ADDRESS OF THE HOLY FATHER PAUL VI
Wednesday, 2 June 1976
Dear sons in Christ,
Your presence here brings back the happy memories of our many visits to the old Beda College. And today we have the same interest in you that we had in so many of the priests that preceded you.
Soon you will leave Rome, and we are happy to be able to send you out personally to your task of Evangelization. You are going forth to preach Christ and to proclaim his saving Gospel to your people. The priorities of your lives in the priesthood, the exigencies of your ministry in the presbyteral order are the same requirements found in the Acts of the Apostles: you are to continue to devote yourselves “to prayer and to the ministry of the word” (Act. 6, 4).
You will eminently fulfil your work as evangelist in the Eucharistic Sacrifice, which you are privileged to offer in the person of Christ, and which is “the source and summit of all Evangelization” (Presbyterorum Ordinis, 5). And rightly you will be looked upon as Christ’s servants, stewards entrusted with the mysteries of God (Cfr. 1 Cor. 4, 1). We exhort you, in the same of the Lord, to be faithful for ever.
In bearing witness to the Good News of God’s grace, you yourselves will be sustained by his power. May the words of Saint Paul be always in your hearts: “Be watchful, stand firm in your faith, be courageous, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love” (1 Cor. 16, 13).
With paternal affection in Christ Jesus, we impart to you our Apostolic Blessing.