In keeping up with tradition, Pope Francis ordained thirteen new priests, at St. Peter's Basilica.
They lined up before the Pope as the ordination ceremony took place. In his homily, Pope Francis described how they should carry out their new role as priests. He placed a large emphasis on one particular trait.
"For the love of Jesus Christ: never tire of being merciful! Please! You have the same capacity to forgive as the Lord, who did not come to condemn, but to forgive. Have mercy, lots of it!”
He also told them that if they come to feel like they're becoming "too forgiving,” they should remember that it was Jesus himself who set the example. The Pope added that a good shepherd enters to the doors of mercy, and the doors of mercy "are the wounds of the Lord.”
"It pains greatly when I find people that no longer go to Confession because they were reprimanded, scolded. They felt the Church's doors shut in their faces! Please, don't do this. Mercy, mercy!”
After the homily, each of the new priests, one by one, stepped up to the altar and knelt before the Pope. Taking their hands, he took their oath of allegiance.
-Do you swear to me and to my successors respect and obedience?
-Yes. I swear.
After taking their oath, the ordination rite continued with prayers for the new priests. They then changed into their dalmatic and stole.
Afterward, they went up again to the Pope, who consecrated them with Holy Oil, and placed a Gospel on their hands. The ordination ended with the Pope giving each new priest the kiss of peace.