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Thursday, 3 November 1983


Dear friends in Christ,

It is a joy to extend warm greetings to Bishop Welsh and to all the members of the pilgrimage from the Diocese of Allentown. I warmly welcome you to the Vatican in this Jubilee Year of the Redemption.

Pilgrimages provide an excellent opportunity for deepening of faith. Thus, I was pleased to learn that you have sought to make your pilgrimage a special time of prayer and reconciliation. When we pray, we open our hearts to our Redeemer, inviting him to come to us and to fill us with his light and peace. And when we seek reconciliation with God we also open our hearts to Christ, as we acknowledge our sins and need to be forgiven. Indeed, it is true to say that the Sacrament of Penance is an act of faith in Christ and in the power of his Redemption. When we turn to Christ in prayer or the Sacrament of Penance, we are professing our belief that his Cross and Resurrection are more powerful than sin and the source of freedom and life.

Saint Paul reminds us that “it was God who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the work of handing on this reconciliation” (2 Cor 5, 18). As you continue your pilgrimage, I pray that God will bless you abundantly with the grace of reconciliation. May he unite your hearts as one in the love of Christ our Saviour, and may he grant you strength for handing on to others the gift of reconciliation.

May the Lord be with you all.


© Copyright 1983 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana


Copyright © Dicastero per la Comunicazione - Libreria Editrice Vaticana