ADDRESS OF POPE JOHN PAUL II
Saturday, 22 January 2005
1. This year too, I welcome you with joy on the occasion of the feast of St Agnes, your heavenly patroness. I offer each one of you a cordial greeting. I first greet Cardinal Camillo Ruini and thank him for his words of filial devotion and spiritual closeness on your behalf. I greet your Rector, Mons. Ermenegildo Manicardi, the superiors, alumni and all who collaborate with your formation, dear students, who have embarked on the educational curriculum that the Church proposes in order to train for the ordained ministry.
During your years at the Collegio Capranica the Lord's grace shapes your
personalities so that you acquire an effective presence in the Christian
community and in society.
Above all, may the Eucharist be your lives' reference point: may the sacrament which is "the sum and summary of our faith" (Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 1327) become in the reality of daily life the source of grace that prompts your action and the summit of perfection to which you constantly aspire.
3. Twenty-five years ago I had the opportunity to visit your Almo Collegio. Recently you desired to commemorate this event with a congress dedicated to the theology of priesthood and the historical forms that from the outset have characterized the formation process at your Institute. May this important anniversary be a further incentive to you to grow in communion with the Successor of Peter and in love for the Church.
May the Virgin Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, and beloved St Agnes, the mystical bride of the Lamb, sustain you with their intercession and example. I cordially impart my Blessing to you all.
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