June 29, 2010
. The Mass held on Tuesday is one of the Vatican's most symbolic ceremonies; it celebrates the feast of Saints Peter and Paul, the patron saints of the Church. Arnolfo di Cambio's ancient bronze statue of Saint Peter is decorated for the mass; it's adorned with papal ornaments, the miter and the ring of the fisherman.
The pope also gathers the metropolitan archbishops named during the previous year to give each a pallium. The pallium is a white woolen band with six black crosses and symbolizes the bishop's unity with the pope.
A gesture increases the symbolism of the pallium: each is placed over the Apostle Saint Peter's tomb and are solemnly taken to the pope at the beginning of Mass.
Benedict XVI repeated that the most damaging persecutions the Church can suffer are those that come from within.
"The worst injuries the Church can suffer are those that contaminate the faith and Christian lives of its members and communities because they erode the Church's integrity."
The attendance of a delegation from the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, the highest authority of the Orthodox Church, gives the ceremony even greater symbolism. The pope prayed with a metropolitan before the tomb of Saint Peter to ask for the unity of all Christians, and the emotional ceremony ended with a warm goodbye.
The archbishops who received palliums are:
- Archbishop Luis Gerardo Herrera O.F.M. of Cuenca, Ecuador.
- Archbishop Alex Thomas Kaliyanil S.V.D. of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
- Archbishop Gerard Tlali Lerotholi O.M.I. of Maseru, Lesotho.
- Archbishop Antonio Fernando Saburido O.S.B. of Olinda and Recife, Brazil.
- Archbishop Albert Legatt of Saint-Boniface, Canada.
- Archbishop Gualtiero Bassetti of Perugia - Citta della Pieve, Italy.
- Archbishop Andrea Bruno Mazzocato of Udine, Italy.
- Archbishop Gabriel Mblinghi C.S.Sp. of Lubango, Angola.
- Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan, Philppines.
- Archbishop Constancio Miranda Weckmann of Chihuahua, Mexico.
- Archbishop Bernard Longley of Birmingham, England.
- Archbishop Juan Jose Asenjo Pelegrina of Seville, Spain.
- Archbishop Jerome Edward Listecki of Milwaukee, U.S.A.
- Archbishop Samuel Kleda of Douala, Cameroon.
- Archbishop Jesus Sanz Montes O.F.M. of Oviedo, Spain.
- Archbishop Anton Stres C.M. of Ljubljana, Slovenia.
- Archbishop Joseph Atanga S.J. of Bertoua, Cameroon.
- Archbishop Stephen Brislin of Cape Town, South Africa.
- Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr of Cincinnati, U.S.A.
- Archbishop Alberto Taveira Correa of Belem do Para, Brazil.
- Archbishop Andre-Mutien Leonard of Mechelen-Brussels, Belgium.
- Archbishop Antonio Lanfranchi of Modena - Nonantola, Italy.
- Archbishop Dominik Duka O.P. of Prague, Czech Republic.
- Archbishop Ricardo Antonio Tobon Restrepo of Medellin, Colombia.
- Archbishop Jose Domingo Ulloa Mendieta O.S.A. of Panama, Panama.
- Archbishop Francis Kallarakal of Verapoly, India.
- Archbishop Desire Tsarahazana of Toamasina, Madagascar.
- Archbishop Ricardo Blazquez Perez of Valladolid, Spain.
- Archbishop Hyginus Kim Hee-joong of Kwangju, Korea.
- Archbishop Luis Madrid Merlano of Nueva Pamplona, Colombia.
- Archbishop Thomas Gerard Wenski of Miami, U.S.A.
- Archbishop Peter Smith of Southwark, England.
- Archbishop Jozef Kowalczyk of Gniezno, Poland.
- Archbishop Pierre Nguyen Van Nhon of Hanoi, Vietnam.
- Archbishop Matthias Kobena Nketsiah of Cape Coast, Ghana.
- Archbishop Bernard Bober of Kosice, Slovakia.
- Archbishop Carlos Garfias Merlos of Acapulco, Mexico.
- Archbishop Luigi Moretti of Salerno - Campagna - Acerno, Italy.