· Cardinal Parolin for the discharge of the commander of the Pontifical Swiss Guard ·
As the 34th commander of the Pontifical Swiss Guard, Colonel Daniel Anrig's service was “generous and competent”. This was stated by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Secretary of State, who expressed “gratitude, closeness and esteem” to the Colonel, along with the “paternal affection of Pope Francis” and the “acknowledgement of all the collaborators of the Holy See, especially of the Secretariat of State”. On the occasion of the discharge of Col. Anrig, who was appointed on 19 August 2008, the Cardinal celebrated Mass on Saturday afternoon, 31 January, in the Church of Santa Maria della Pietà near the Teutonic Cemetery. The Mass was followed by the passing of command to the Vice Commander, Lieutenant Colonel Christoph Graf, in the courtyard of honour.
In the homily, referring to the Gospel passage which “presents Jesus who teaches and works with authority”, Cardinal Parolin recalled that “the supreme act” of “his authority is the total gift of Himself on the Cross”. He noted that there, in the Swiss Guards' chapel, “we are able to admire a fresco of the Crucifixion commissioned by Commander Kaspar Röist not many years before offering his own life defending the Pope during the sack of Rome”. And “Röist himself is represented next to the Lord's Cross”, not only for having commissioned the piece, “but as if to indicate the commander's place: a man of faith, who does not hesitate to proclaim Jesus Christ crucified and to serve the successor of Peter with all his strength, also accepting each day's cross and – as the wording of the guards' oath states – sacrificing, where necessary, even life in his defence”.
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