Downtown Brooklyn

Mass at Barclays Center marks golden jubilee of the Neocatechumenal Way for U.S. Catholics

July 9, 2024 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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DOWNTOWN BROOKLYN — BARCLAYS CENTER BECAME A HUB FOR MORE THAN 20,000 CATHOLICS gathering the weekend of July 7-8 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the in the U.S., according to The Tablet diocesan newspaper and other sources. The faith-based gathering at the borough’s famous sports arena celebrated the Spanish-born Catholic spiritual renewal movement’s arrival in the States. A catechumen is traditionally a course of instruction for people converting to Catholicism; however, this renewal movement includes Catholics who are also on the road to ordination or special ministries, including religious orders.  Cardinal Christophe Pierre, the papal nuncio to the U.S., concelebrated Mass with Brooklyn Diocesan Bishop Robert Brennan and several other bishops and priests. Two lay people, Mr. Francisco José Gómez Argüello, a Spanish painter, and  Ms. Carmen Hernández, a theology graduate, founded the movement, which Pope Saint John Paul II formally recognized in 1990, calling it “an itinerary of Catholic formation, valid for our society and for our times.” During the liturgy, about a thousand young men entering the seminary stood up to receive a blessing from Cardinal Christophe. Around 1,500 young women discerning religious life or missionary vocations also stood to receive a blessing.

The Diocese of Brooklyn (which includes Queens) has several Neocatechumenal Way communities, including 1,100 across the United States.

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