Subject: ET Bishop Asks Lay Christians to Spearhead Evangelization


Issue No. 361, Monday, September 21, 2004

EAST TIMOR: Bishop Asks Lay Christians to Spearhead Evangelization

Bishop Alberto Ricardo da Silva, the newly appointed Catholic Bishop of Dili in East Timor, has said he is convinced that "this is the time for the laity in the Church".

Rt Rev Da Silva, who was appointed Bishop of Dili by Pope John Paul II on February 27, 2004 and ordained on May 2, 2004, was speaking during a seminar for newly-appointed bishops of mission territories by the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples in Rome, September 5-18, 2004.

"The laity are the main agents of re-evangelization that is so necessary for our country, where people are baptized, but they know very little about the faith and how to live it in the changed social, cultural and economic situation of today; Catholics need to re-evangelise themselves," said Bishop Da Silva.

The Democratic Republic of East Timor came into being on May 20, 2002, after a period of temporary administration by the United Nations. With its 95% Catholic population, East Timor is Asia's most Catholic nation.

The Diocese of Dili has 558 000 Catholic who are served by 96 priests, about 340 women religious, many catechists and other active lay persons. (Source: Fides)

Support ETAN, make a secure financial contribution at

Back to September menu
World Leaders Contact List
Human Rights Violations in East Timor
Main Postings Menu