The latest issue of Alfa y Omega, the weekly newspaper of the Archdiocese of Madrid, reported on the Advent announcement of Kiko Arguello, founder of the Neocatechumenal Way.
Arguello explained that during the recent "ad limina" visit of Nicaraguan bishops to Rome, the Holy Father pointedly asked them: "What do you think of the Neocatechumenal Way?"
According to Arguello, after various bishops gave their opinion, the Pope said: "The statutes of the Neocatechumenal Way are about to be approved and signed. You must support and help the development of these communities, which are one of the Church´s greatest strengths, and are doing so much good throughout the world."
Once the statutes are approved, the Neocatechumenal Way will have juridical existence at the heart of the Church.
The Neocatechumenal Way, or Neocatechumenate, emerged in the mid-1960s in a poor Madrid neighborhood where young painter Kiko Arguello decided to live, taking with him only a Bible and a guitar.
Arguello said that the Way is neither a spontaneous group nor an association -- neither is it a spiritual movement nor a select group within the parish.
It is a way lived in the scheme of small communities composed of people of different ages, social conditions and cultures, who live their faith fully within the present parish structure and in communion with the bishop.
The Neocatechumenal Way now boasts 1,500 communities in 800 dioceses and 5,000 parishes. It has opened some 40 seminaries worldwide.