Pope Francis Will Issue Apostolic Exhortation on Holiness Next Week

Pope Francis Will Issue Apostolic Exhortation on Holiness Next Week

VATICAN CITY – A statement released by the Holy See Press Office this week confirmed that Pope Francis will be releasing an apostolic exhortation next week. The title of the exhortation is Gaudete et exsultate, “Rejoice and be glad”.

Archbishop Angelo De Donatis, the vicar general of the Diocese of Rome, will present the apostolic exhortation on April 9.  Italian journalist Gianni Valente and Paola Bignardi, a former president of Catholic Action Italy, will also be speaking that day.

So just what is an apostolic exhortation? According to a guide for Church documents published by EWTN, an apostolic exhortation is used by the Pope “to communicate to the Church the conclusions [the Pope] has reached after consideration of the recommendations of a Synod of Bishops. He has also used it in other circumstances, such as to exhort religious to a deeper evangelical life.” Apostolic exhortations are considered to be some of the highest ranking papal documents, ranking after Encyclical Letters.

Gaudete et exsultate is Pope Francis’s third apostolic exhortation. He issued Evangelii gaudium in 2013. The release of Amoris laetitia in 2016 led to controversy due to a portion of chapter 8 of the document that discussed divorced Catholics and the reception of the Eucharist.

Read more: Amoris Laetitia and Synodal Chaos! The Controversy Explained!

Apostolic exhortations are usually written as the Pope reflects on a Synod of Bishops. In the case of Gaudete et exsultate, the Pope’s writings will reflect on the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s letter to bishops. The letter was issued in the beginning of March and discussed topics concerning  Christian salvation.

A subject mentioned regularly in this letter is the concept of Placuit Deo. This refers to the problems with Pelagianism and Gnosticism. Pope Francis is expected to explain his thoughts on the threat of the “new Pelagianism” and “new Gnosticism”, as well as offer encouragement to those striving towards holiness today.