· Vatican City ·

Greeting at the Conclusion of Mass

“I will carry you with me in my memory and in my prayers”

17 December 2021

The following is the English text of the Holy Father’s address at the conclusion of Mass, after a greeting from Archbishop Theodoros Kontidis, sj .

Dear brothers and sisters,

At the conclusion of this celebration, I would like to express my gratitude for the warm welcome I received in your midst. I thank you most heartily! Efcharistó [Thank you!].

The Greek language gave to the entire Church the word that sums up the gift of Christ: Eucaristia, thanksgiving. For us Christians, thanksgiving is at the heart of our faith and life. May the Holy Spirit make of everything we are and everything we do a “Eucharist”, a thanksgiving to God and a gift of love to our brothers and sisters.

In this spirit, I renew my heartfelt gratitude to the civil authorities, to the President of the Republic here with us, to my brother bishops, and to all those who, in a variety of ways, helped to prepare and organize this visit. My thanks to every one of you! And thank you to the choir that has helped us to pray so well.

Tomorrow I will be leaving Greece, but I will not leave you! I will carry you with me in my memory and in my prayers. And I ask you too, please, to keep praying for me. Thank you!