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Cardinal Marengo’s address after the Eucharistic celebration

Joyful witnesses of the Gospel

 Joyful witnesses of the Gospel  ING-036
08 September 2023

The following is the English text of Apostolic Prefect of Ulaanbaatar Cardinal Giorgio Marengo’s words of greeting to Pope Francis at the end of Holy Mass on Sunday, 3 September, in the Steppe Arena.

Holy Father, we are about to receive your blessing at the end of the Eucharist, celebrated in Mongolia for the first time by the Successor of St Peter. Your presence here is for us a source of deep emotion, difficult to express in words. You strongly desired to be among us as a pilgrim of peace and bearer of the fire of the Spirit. We feel as if we are with the apostles at the lakeshore, like on that day when the Risen One was waiting for them with a burning brazier. You reminded us of this last year at the consistory when speaking of the fire that must burn in us. The charcoal fire illuminates, warms and gives comfort, even if no flames are visible.

Now that we have experienced how dear this people of God in Mongolia is to you, we wish to accept your invitation to be joyful and courageous witnesses of the Gospel in this blessed land. Please continue to support us by word and example; we can do nothing other than put into practice what we have seen and heard from you in these days.

So please accept this symbolic gift: it is the word “bayarlalaa”, meaning “thank you” in Old Mongolian Script. It was written by a young woman who studied in our educational institutions, where she learned to love her country more and more, cultivating its ancient literary tradition. This word comes from the verb “bayarlakh”, which means “to rejoice”. We say “thank you” because our hearts are filled with joy, the joy of the Gospel, the Evangelii Gaudium that you convey to us. Thank you, Your Holiness! Please bless us.