Can. 781 Because the whole Church is of its nature missionary and the work of
evangelisation is to be considered a fundamental duty of the people of God, all Christ's
faithful must be conscious of the responsibility to play their part in missionary
Can. 782 ß1 The Roman Pontiff and the College of Bishops have the responsibility for
the overall direction and coordination of the initiatives and activities which concern
missionary work and cooperation.
ß2 As the sponsors of the universal Church and of all the Churches, all Bishops are to
have a special solicitude for missionary activity, especially by arousing, fostering and
sustaining missionary initiatives in their own particular Churches.
Can. 783 Members of institutes of consecrated life, because of the dedication to the
service of the Church deriving from their very consecration, have an obligation to play a
zealous and special part in missionary activity, in a manner appropriate to their
Can. 784 Missionaries, that is, those who have been sent by the competent
ecclesiastical authority to engage in missionary activity, may be chosen from the
indigenous population or from others, be they secular clergy, or members of institutes of
consecrated life or of a society of apostolic life, or other lay members of Christ's
Can. 785 ß1 Catechists are to be given a role in missionary work. These are lay
members of Christ's faithful who have received proper formation and are outstanding in
their living of the christian life. Under the direction of missionaries, they are to
present the Gospel teaching and engage in liturgical worship and in works of charity.
ß2 Catechists are to receive their formation in schools founded for this purpose. If
there are no such schools, they are to be formed under the direction of the missionaries.
Can. 786 Missionary activity properly so called, whereby the Church is founded amongst
peoples or groups where it has not taken root before, is performed principally by the
Church sending heralds of the Gospel, until such time as the new Churches are fully
constituted, that is, have their own resources and sufficient means, so that they
themselves can carry on the work of evangelisation.
Can. 787 ß1 By the testimony of their words and of their lives, missionaries are to
establish a sincere dialogue with those who do not believe in Christ, so that, taking
their native character and culture into account, ways may be opened up by which they can
be led to know the good news of the Gospel.
ß2 Missionaries are to ensure that they teach the truths of the faith to those whom
they judge to be ready to receive the good news of the Gospel, so that, if they freely
request it, they may be admitted to the reception of baptism.
Can. 788 ß1 Those who have expressed the wish to embrace faith in Christ, and who have
completed the period of their preliminary catechumenate, are to be admitted to the
catechumenate proper in a liturgical ceremony; and their names are to be inscribed in the
book which is kept for this purpose.
ß2 By formation and their first steps in christian living, catechumens are to be
initiated into the mysteries of salvation, and introduced into the life of faith, liturgy
and charity of the people of God, as well as into the apostolate.
ß3 It is the responsibility of the Episcopal Conference to establish norms concerning
the arrangement of the catechumenate, determining what should be done by catechumens and
what should be their prerogatives.
Can. 789 By means of appropriate formation, neophytes are to be led to a deeper
knowledge of the Gospel truths, and to the fulfilment of the duties undertaken in baptism.
They are also to be imbued with a sincere love of Christ and his Church.
Can. 790 ß1 In mission territories, it is the responsibility of the diocesan Bishop:
1ƒ to promote, regulate and coordinate both new initiatives and established works
concerning missionary activity;
2ƒ to ensure that there are proper agreements with the Moderators of those institutes
which dedicate themselves to missionary activities, and that relationships with them are
for the good of the mission.
ß2 The provisions made by the diocesan Bishop in accordance with ß1, n. 1 are binding
on all missionaries, including religious and their helpers residing in his territory.
Can. 791 In order to foster missionary cooperation, in each diocese:
1ƒ vocations to the mission are to be promoted;
2ƒ a priest is to be appointed to promote missionary initiatives, especially the
'Pontifical Missionary Works';
3ƒ a day for the missions is to be celebrated annually;
4ƒ each year an appropriate financial contribution for the missions is to be sent to
the Holy See.
Can. 792 The Episcopal Conference is to establish and promote means by which those who
come to their territory from the missions, for the purpose of work or study, are to be
given a fraternal welcome and helped with suitable pastoral care.