"The Missionary is like a candle. He lights the light and passes it on to others. To be an evangelizing missionary is to bring the light of Christ, but to bring it, we must first light it in our hearts. Every Christian must make the Gospel shine in his or her life and spread the joy of the Word of God to others," says Fr Lasarte.
"It is a great joy to be in this blessed land! This is the first time I have been in Bolivia," continues the Salesian, a Uruguayan Salesian missionary who has worked for many years in Africa, in Angola, and currently serves the Congregation at the Salesian Missions Dicastery.
During his stay in Bolivia, Fr Lasarte will also visit the Province, the Salesian communities and the Salesian houses in order to know and encourage the missionary Spirit. "Participation in this great event makes me realize that in Bolivia a great movement has awakened and that this is, without a doubt, a missionary community, a missionary Province, a living Province that will have a future," he adds.
Fr Lasarte was asked to visit the Salesian communities to encourage various pastoral proposals and to accompany Salesian missionary volunteer service. In this regard, he says: "It is wonderful to make young people passionate about service and mission and if this becomes reality, the Province, the mission, the charism, will have a great future ahead."
"The first thing a missionary must do," he urged, "is to know how to transmit faith in a natural way, with joy, bearing witness with love and with words. The missionary is called to evangelize, sometimes leaving his communities, leaving everything behind him, to sow hope and the Gospel."
This V American Missionary Congress highlights the challenges of ecclesial communities, that is, to create missionary groups that keep alive in communities, parishes and families the meaning of "going out to go to the encounter, the meeting with others, and bringing the Gospel."