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Saint Peter's Square
Sunday, 20 May 2018



Dear Brothers and Sisters, Good morning!

The Time of Easter culminates in today’s celebration of Pentecost, centred on the death and Resurrection of Jesus. This Solemnity inspires us to remember and relive the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and the other disciples gathered in prayer with the Virgin Mary in the Upper Room (cf. Acts 2:1-11). On that day the history of holy Christianity began, because the Holy Spirit is the source of holiness, which is not the privilege of the few, but the vocation of all.

Indeed, through Baptism, we are all called to participate in the same divine life of Christ and, with Confirmation, to become his witnesses in the world. “The Holy Spirit bestows holiness in abundance among God’s holy and faithful people” (Apostolic Exhortation Gaudete et Exsultate, n. 6). God “does not make men holy and save them merely as individuals, without bond or link between one another. Rather has it pleased Him to bring men together as one people, a people which acknowledges Him in truth and serves Him in holiness” (Dogmatic Constitution Lumen Gentium, n. 9).

Through the ancient prophets the Lord had already announced his plan to the people. Ezekiel: “I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to observe my ordinances. You ... shall be my people and I will be your God” (36:27-28). The prophet Joel: “I will pour out my spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy.... Even upon the menservants and maidservants in those days, I will pour out my spirit.... All who call upon the name of the Lord shall be delivered (2:28, 29, 32). And all these prophesies are fulfilled in Jesus Christ, mediator and guarantor of the perennial outpouring of the spirit (cf. Roman Missal, Preface after the Ascension). And today is the celebration of the outpouring of the Spirit.

Since that day of Pentecost, and until the end of times, this holiness, the fullness of which is Christ, is bestowed upon all those who are open to the action of the Holy Spirit and strive to be docile to him. It is the Spirit who makes us feel complete joy. The Holy Spirit, by coming to us, overcomes aridity, opens hearts to hope, and spurs and fosters interior maturity in our relationship with God and neighbour. It is what Saint Paul tells us: “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control (Gal 5:22-23). The Spirit creates all this in us. For this reason today we celebrate this richness which the Father gives us.

Let us ask the Virgin Mary to obtain for the Church even today a renewed Pentecost, a renewed youthfulness that will give us the joy of living and witnessing to the Gospel and “to pour out upon us a fervent longing to be saints for God’s greater glory” (Gaudete et Exsultate, n. 177).

After the Regina Caeli the Holy Father added:

Dear brothers and sisters, Pentecost leads us and our heart to Jerusalem. Yesterday evening I joined spiritually in the Prayer Vigil for peace which took place in that City which is holy for Jews, Christians and Muslims. And today let us continue to invoke the Holy Spirit to inspire willingness and gestures of dialogue and reconciliation in the Holy Land and in the entire Middle East.

I wish to dedicate a particular thought to beloved Venezuela. I ask the Holy Spirit to give all the people of Venezuela — all, government leaders, people — the wisdom to come together on the path of peace and unity. I also pray for the inmates who died yesterday.

The event of Pentecost marks the origin of the universal mission of the Church. For this reason the Message for the next World Mission Day is being published today. I am also pleased to recall that yesterday marked 175 years since the foundation of Opera dell’Infanzia Missionaria, an organization which sees children as protagonists of mission, with prayer and small everyday acts of love and service. I thank and encourage all the children who take part in spreading the Gospel in the world. Thank you!

I offer my cordial greeting to you, pilgrims from Italy and from other countries. In particular, to students from the Colegio Irabia-Izaga of Pamplona, to the group from Colégio São Tomás of Lisbon, and to the faithful from Neuss, Germany.

I greet the Schola Cantorum from Vallo della Lucania, the faithful from Agnone and those from “San Valentino in Abruzzo Citeriore, the Confirmation youth from San Cataldo, the Giovani Amici social cooperative of Terrassa Padovana and the Caterina di Santa Rosa educational institute of Rome, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I am pleased to announce that on 29 June a Consistory will be held for the creation of 14 new Cardinals. Their places of origin express the universality of the Church which continues to proclaim to all people on earth the merciful love of God. The inclusion of the new Cardinals in the Diocese of Rome, moreover, manifests the inseparable bond between the See of Peter and the particular Churches spread throughout the world.

Here are the names of the new Cardinals:

1. His Beatitude Louis Raphaël i Sako, Patriarch of Babylon for Chaldeans

2. Archbishop Luis Ladaria Ferrer, sj, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith

3. Archbishop Angelo De Donatis, Vicar General of Rome

4. Archbishop Giovanni Angelo Becciu, Substitute for General Affairs of the Secretariat of State and Special Delegate to the Sovereign Military Order of Malta

5. Archbishop Konrad Krajewski, Papal Almoner

6. Archbishop Joseph Coutts of Karachi

7. Bishop António dos Santos Marto of Leiria-Fátima

8. Archbishop Pedro Ricardo Barreto Jimeno of Huancayo

9. Archbishop Désiré Tsarahazana of Toamasina

10. Archbishop Giuseppe Petrocchi of L’Aquila

11. Archbishop Thomas Aquino Manyo Maeda of Osaka.

Along with them I will join to the College of Cardinals: one Archbishop, one Bishop and one Religious who have distinguished themselves by their service to the Church:

12. Archbishop Sergio Obeso Rivera, Archbishop emeritus of Jalapa

13. Bishop Toribio Ticona Porco, Bishop-Prelate emeritus of Corocoro

14. Claretian Fr Aquilino Bocos Merino

Let us pray for the new Cardinals so that, confirming their adherence to Christ, merciful and faithful High Priest (cf. Heb 2:17), they may help me in my ministry as Bishop of Rome for the good of the holy faithful People of God.

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