Over the years, the mission of The People of Hope has centered on a life of prayer, evangelization, and family life. Our covenant has two key dimensions – individual commitments to know, love, and serve the Lord, as well as communal pledges to help one another live for Jesus. The People of Hope desires to help stem the tide of evil in today’s society by:
- Living a Christian life in community in such a way as to help influence life in the Church and in society
- Proclaiming God’s love, holiness, and justice, by our life and our words
- Participating in the mission of the Church to evangelize
In general, we want to be an instrument in the Lord’s hands for the transformation of this world, so that it increasingly reflects His glory.
The Mission as Individuals
As individuals, we want to respond to God’s invitation by personal conversion to the Lord and by dedication to a life of righteousness, growth in holiness, and service as disciples of Jesus Christ. By His grace we have become sons and daughters of God, filled with His Holy Spirit, desiring to live out all our relationships in the power of the that Spirit. We want to be disciples who put our hand to the plow without looking back (cf. Luke 9:6), take up our crosses daily (cf. Luke 9:23-27), and serve rather than be served (cf. Mark 10:45).
A Community of Disciples
In response to a particular call of God, we have freely bound ourselves with others who have been called in the same way. We accept the mission our Lord has entrusted to us as a people:
- To be brothers and sisters of one another in the Lord
- To become more and more a people of praise and worship
- To share our lives and our resources with one another
- To make our resources and ourselves available for mission
To sum up, we live out our Christian commitment as a community of disciples, united by covenant, a common way of life, and dedication to a common mission, all of this consistent with the “Criteria of Ecclesiality” for lay groups enunciated by Pope John II in his1988 apostolic exhortation, Christifideles Laici (The Lay Members of Christ’s Faithful People), as expressed in section 30 of that document, as follows:
“It is always from the perspective of the Church’s communion and mission, and not in opposition to the freedom to associate, that one understands the necessity of having clear and definite criteria for discerning and recognizing such lay groups, also called ‘Criteria of Ecclesiality’. The following basic criteria might be helpful in evaluating an association of the lay faithful in the Church:
- The primacy given to the call of every Christian to holiness, as it is manifested ‘in the fruits of grace which the Spirit produces in the faithful’ (109)
- The responsibility of professing the Catholic faith, embracing and proclaiming the truth about Christ, the Church and humanity, in obedience to the Church’s magisterium, as the Church interprets it
- The witness to a strong and authentic communion in filial relationship to the Pope, —- (112), and with the local bishop, —- (113)
- Conformity to and participation in the Church’s apostolic goals, that is, ‘the evangelization and sanctification of humanity and the Christian formation of peoples’ conscience, so as to enable them to infuse the spirit of the gospel into the various communities and spheres of life’ (115)
- A commitment to a presence in human society, which in the light of the Church’s social doctrine, places it at the service of the total dignity of the person”
— Given at St. Peter’s in Rome, Dec.30, 1988, on the feast of the Holy Family by Pope John Paul II.