During an international retreat of the Neocatechumenal Way held in Porto San Giorgio, Italy, Kiko Argüello announced Feb. 2 that Maria Ascensión Romero will be a new international member of the movement, replacing Carmen Hernandez, who died July 19, 2016. Argüello and Hernandez were the ecclesial movement's co-founders.
Romero joins Fr.Mario Pezzi and Argüello to make up the international team, which according to the the movement’s statutes is to be comprised of three members. Romero was an itinerant missionary for years in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
The Neocatechumenal Way was founded in 1964 in Spain. It draws its inspiration from the practices of the early Catholic Church, providing “post-baptismal” Christian formation in some 40,000 small, parish-based communities. The movement is present all over the world, and says it has an estimated membership of more than 1 million people.
Since the Neocatechumenal Way was founded, the group has sometimes been cautioned by the Vatican for inserting various novel practices into the Masses it organizes. These include practices such as lay preaching, standing during the Eucharistic Prayer, the reception of Holy Communion while sitting, and the passing of the Most Precious Blood from person to person.
This article was originally published by our sister agency, ACI Prensa. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.