LETTER OF HIS HOLINESS BENEDICT XVI
To my Venerable Brother
At the end of the Week of Spiritual Exercises in which you proposed the meditations on the theme of fellowship with God, I would like to express to you, Venerable Brother, my cordial gratitude for the precious service you have offered to me and to my co-workers.
In commenting on certain passages from St John’s First Letter you have guided us on the route of a discovery of the mystery of communion into which we are integrated with our Baptism. I also thank you for this itinerary which you wisely prepared. The silence and prayer of these days and, in a special way, the Eucharistic adoration, were filled with profound gratitude to God for the “great love” (1 Jn 3:1) he has given us and with which he bound us to himself in a filial relationship which from this moment constitutes our deepest reality and will be fully manifested when “our eyes will see his face and we will be like him” (Roman Missal, Eucharistic Prayer III).
To be able to grasp in your very presence and in your style, Venerable Brother, the particular witness of faith of the Church which believes, hopes and loves on the African continent gave me special joy: a spiritual patrimony that constitutes a great wealth for the entire People of God and for the whole world, especially in the perspective of the New Evangelization. As a son of the Church in Africa, you enabled us to experience once again that exchange of gifts which is one of the most beautiful aspects of ecclesial communion, in which the variety of geographical and cultural provenances finds a way to express itself harmoniously in the unity of the Mystical Body.
As I invoke for you, dear Brother, an abundance of divine rewards, and express every good wish for your demanding ministry, I warmly impart to you a special Apostolic Blessing which I willingly extend to the priests and faithful entrusted to your pastoral care.
From the Vatican, 3 March 2012
BENEDICTUS P P. XVI
© Copyright 2012 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana