Pontifical Missionary Union
The Pontifical Missionary Union (PMU) was created on the 31st October, 1916, an inspiration of Blessed Paolo Manna with the aim of animating and forming the faithful baptized in their missionary responsibility through the pastoral service of the bishops and priests according to the motto “All the Church for all the world”.
Since being given its original identity of service to the faith and the mission of all baptized by Saint Paul VI in 1966, it follows a new way of working of missionary formation of the entire People of God.
The year 2016 saw the start of a work of listening, study and discernment in order to understand and serve the local needs of permanent formation for the faith and evangelization of the particular Churches, in particular for those linked to the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples (CEP), in their various ecclesial subjects (lay faithful, families, the young, catechists, bishops, priests, deacons, men and women religious with particular attention to religious communities which are locally founded and of diocesan law).
The International Centre of Missionary Animation (CIAM) was created on the 31st May 1974 in the wake of the Bishops’ Synod, the outcome of which was marked by the Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi, by Cardinal Angelo Rossi, Prefect to the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples.
In the light of the only mission of Jesus Christ, delivered to the Church through the Holy Spirit, the formation commitments of the mission are called to a creative involvement of the faith, prayer, testimony and charity of every Christian.
It is about living and educating ourselves to the only ecclesial communion where the Universal Church, particular Churches, Churches of recent foundation, fruit of the missionary work of the last centuries, missionary and consecrated life institutes, ecclesial movements and new communities of Christian life can serve the salvation of all, the transmission of faith and the transformation of the world to dialogue with the conscience and freedom of everyone, with the people, their cultures and religions.
The universal opening of the faith in a permanent state of mission interests, however, all the Christians of the whole world, beginning with our own necessity for the evangelization of every local Church. By permanent formation we intend all that concerns the growth, development, purification, solidity, maturation of the Christian faith, meant as the personal encounter with Jesus Christ alive in his Church. The mission, in its paradigmatic origin of relationship of the Christian faith with the world, especially in its non-Christian dimension and absence of faith, represents the universal opening and ecclesial responsibility towards the fullness of the human dignity of everyone, as sons and daughters of God, their salvation from sin and death and the interest of Christian charity towards all humanity, called to be the family of God.
In line with the original charismatic intuition of the PMU and the reasons given for the creation of the CIAM, the formation of the mission of the Church (missio ad-inter gentes) and the missionary animation of the entire People of God on the basis of the various vocations of the baptized faithful, continue to be the reasons for their existence and the nature of their commitment. The PMU and CIAM are invited to propose a missionary formation together with the particular Churches that will stimulate them towards the necessity of taking responsibility for evangelization and testimony towards their people and their country and towards people and cultures afar. A formative service, while being useful to local pastoral needs, continues to stimulate, provoke and induce reflection, actions and commitments that take into serious consideration the mission relationship which exists between belonging to Jesus Christ and being sent into the world, thus opening to the universal dimensions of Christian life.