Tourism, both as an activity carried out by people during their free time and as a working sector in which many exercise their profession and as a set of activities that characterize a place as a tourist destination, is present in a large part of contemporary society. Thus integrated into the daily life of communities, tourism is a dimension that diocesan pastoral care must consider as its ordinary component and, as such, figure among the sectors that are the subject of regular attention by the local Ordinary and his Councils. consultative.
Among the objectives of the pastoral care of tourism at the diocesan level, the following must not be omitted.
Offer a Christian vision of tourism that leads the faithful to live this reality with a commitment to faith and witness and with a missionary attitude. This objective will be taken into consideration in preaching, catechesis and in the use of the means of social communication. Similarly, efforts will be made to offer adequate training in schools to make people appreciate the values of tourism in keeping with the dignity and development of individuals and peoples.
To train pastoral workers who can specifically promote pastoral work in this sector. When the needs of the diocese so require, some suitable priests and lay people will be offered the opportunity for a broader specific formation.
Study the reality of tourism in the diocese, formulate the pastoral criteria and propose the actions to be undertaken in the Presbyteral and Pastoral Councils. Religious attention to tourists, integrated into the diocesan program of pastoral activity, must be carried out according to terms suited to their language and culture, without this constituting a separate reality, avoiding causing discomfort to the life of the local community.
Adopt measures in the periods of greatest tourist affluence to optimize the service of the most visited parishes, providing, if necessary, for the transfer of priests from other parishes and the collaboration of priests from other dioceses or other countries.
Formulate the reception of tourists by the diocesan Church through a letter from the Bishop, especially at the beginning of the periods of most intense tourist activity and through aids which facilitate information and participation in the celebrations and in the life of the local Church.
Promote the formation of groups and associations, as well as the collaboration of volunteers, for the management of the Church’s patrimony open to visitors and for the reception of tourists, so as to be able to offer sufficiently long opening hours.
Building parishes and community centers more suitable for the pastoral care of tourism, taking into account the new urban and social realities.
Maintain contacts with the leaders of other Christian confessions in order to take measures that can contribute to a better religious service of their faithful, following the criteria and norms established by the Holy See and by the Episcopal Conferences.
Encourage collaboration with local public and administrative authorities, with associations of operators and workers and with other organizations affected by tourism.
Create a diocesan Commission for the pastoral care of tourism which coordinates and animates the pastoral care of the sector, and which includes experts from the various categories of people in the world of tourism.
(Taken from: Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, Guidelines for the Pastoral Care of Tourism, 2001)