Pope says laity not second class Church members

Pope Francis has said that lay people are not second class members of the Church at the service of the hierarchy.

Instead they participate in Christ’s priestly role through their own work in the world.

The Pope said this in a message marking the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council’s Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity.

“The Council . . . does not look at lay people as if they were ‘second class’ members, at the service of the hierarchy and only executors of orders from on high,” stated the Pope.

“But as disciples of Christ who, by force of their Baptism and their nature inserted ‘in the world’, are called to animate every space, every activity, every human relation according to the spirit of the Gospel.”

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