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Regional bishops to make ‘Ad Limina’ visit in February

File photo of the regional arch/bishops posing with the Pope Benedict XVI on 6 June 2008 in their ad limina visit 10 years ago, Vatican City.

PENAMPANG – Members of the Bishops’ Conference of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei will make their ‘ad limina’ visit in Rome on 4-9 Feb 2018.

In a circular received by on Jan 4, Bishop Francis Sebastian of Penang, president of the bishops’ conference, asks for prayers from all the faithful in the three countries to pray for this event.

“…we wish for all Catholics, through prayer and solidarity, to feel a part of the Ad Limina visit, which confirms and celebrates that which we profess each week when we express our belief in the ‘one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church,’ the bishop writes.

The Ad Limina visit is formally called ‘ad limina apostolorum,’ which means ‘to the thresholds of the apostles’ Peter and Paul, who were martyred in Rome.

This visit is made by the Ordinaries of a Region (e.g. Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei), which include the cardinal, archbishops and bishops in charge of a diocese.

The visit consists of three parts:

  1. A personal visit to the tombs of Sts Peter and Paul.  It connects the present successor to the Apostles (bishops, archbishops, cardinal) to the two major Apostles credited with the spreading of the faith.
  2. A visit and interview with the Holy Father on Feb 8.  This is a time when the cardinal, archbishops and bishops renew their obedience and loyalty to Pope Francis, the successor of Peter, and receive his teaching in the form of a reflection and they render oral reports on the state of their individual arch/dioceses.
  3. A scheduled visit to the various offices of the Roman Curia, presenting the written report to the Secretariat of State.  Each diocese is sent a questionnaire of the information being requested by the Vatican.  This five-year report provides statistical and written descriptions of all the priests, deacons, religious and laity serving in the diocese; the state of the sacramental life of the diocese; the financial health of the diocese as a whole; the types of programmes being offered which can range from prison ministry to evangelisation to family life to ecumenism and inter-religious dialogue; the process of Catholic education in Catholic Mission schools and parishes; evangelisation efforts to the active, inactive and unchurched; and the current status of our priestly vocations.  This report also presents the successes and challenges since the last report give

The last ad limina visit was made 10 years ago in June 2008.

The circular will be read at all Masses on the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time Jan 20-21.

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