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Pope's Mass: Priests are Spiritual Fathers

2013-06-26

POPE FRANCIS

"When a man does not have this desire, something is missing in this man. Something is wrong. All of us, to exist, to become complete, in order to be mature, we need to feel the joy of fatherhood: even those of us who are celibate. Fatherhood is giving life to others, giving life, giving life… For us, it is pastoral paternity, spiritual fatherhood, but this is still giving life, this is still becoming fathers.”

The Pope celebrated the Mass with roughly  80 priests, to mark the 60th anniversary of Italian Cardinal Salvatore De Giorgi’s priestly ordination. 

PARTIAL HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)

"When a man does not have this desire, something is missing in this man. Something is wrong. All of us, to exist, to become complete, in order to be mature, we need to feel the joy of fatherhood: even those of us who are celibate. Fatherhood is giving life to others, giving life, giving life… For us, it is pastoral paternity, spiritual fatherhood, but this is still giving life, this is still becoming fathers.”

"A father who knows what it means to protect his children. And this is a grace that we priests must ask for ourselves: to be a father, to be a father. The grace of fatherhood, of pastoral paternity, of spiritual paternity. We may have many sins, but this is the "commune sanctorum": we all have sins. But not having children, never becoming a father, is like having an incomplete life: a life that stops half way through. And therefore we have to be fathers. And that’s a grace that the Lord gives us. People say to us: "Father, Father, Father ...". They want us to be just that, fathers, with the grace of pastoral fatherhood.”

"We thank God for this grace of fatherhood in the Church, which is passed from father to son, and so on ... And I think, finally, these two icons and one more: the icon of Abram who asks for a child, the icon of Abraham with a stick in his hand, defending his family, and the icon of the elderly Simeon in the Temple, when he receives the new life : this is a spontaneous liturgy, the liturgy of joy , in Him. And to you, the Lord today gifts great joy.”


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