· The Bishop of Rome takes possession of the Cathedral of St John Lateran ·
God is patient with us because he loves us. And those who love “are able to understand, to hope, to inspire confidence; they do not give up, they do not burn bridges, they are able to forgive”. This is “God’s way of doing things” in the words of Pope Francis, who presided at Mass on 7 April, Divine Mercy Sunday, the Second Sunday of Easter, at the Basilica of St John Lateran when he took possession of the Roman Cathedra.
To the thousands of faithful overflowing the Cathedral of Rome and the many who followed the ceremony on the maxi-screens in the square outside, the Pope spoke again about the beauty of the experience of mercy, recalling that the Lord “always waits for us, even when we have left him behind” and is always “ready to embrace us”, bearing witness to the parable of the prodigal son. In this story, he said, “Jesus shows us this merciful patience of God so that we can regain confidence, hope”. It is like a “dialogue between our weakness and the patience of God”, he explained quoting Romano Guardini and assuring us that the Father “is never far” and he “always waits for us”.
Then the Holy Father invited us to respond to “God's patience” with the “courage to return to him, however many mistakes and sins there may be in our life”. Like Thomas “we too can enter into the wounds of Jesus”, and thus we experience that for God “we are not numbers”, “we are important... even if we are sinners”. It is all about finding “the courage”, the Pope said, “to trust in Jesus’ mercy, to trust in his patience, to seek refuge always in the wounds of his love”.
This invitation had already been heard a few hours before in St Peter's Square at the recitation of the Regina Caeli: the Lord — the Bishop of Rome recalled — “always awaits us, loves us, has pardoned us with his Blood and pardons us every time we go to him to ask his forgiveness. Let us trust in his mercy!”.
St. Peter’s Square
Nov. 12, 2019
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