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Friday, 20 December 1963


Dear newly ordained priests, parents and relatives,

Our heart overflows with joy as We look out upon you, newly anointed priests of God, and proud parents and relatives. We lovingly and with satisfaction welcome you, new stewards of the mysteries of God, to assist Us and Our Venerable Brothers in our magnificent ministry.

The great Apostle St. Paul called the ministers of the Gospel, servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. He wanted them to be trustworthy. And this is Our wish for you particulary since you have been ordained here in Rome.

As students of the North American College, you were privileged to witness the Second Vatican Council, where Bishops from every corner of the earth gave testimony to their loyalty to Peter, the «Rock» upon which Christ built His Church. These zealous stewards whom you will assist manifested great strength and fidelity to the Church. You, too, must be strong and faithful in your willingness to preach the Gospel of Christ, and.unless you are, you will not be able to teach this loyalty to those entrusted to your priestly care.

We are happy with you and We shall pray that you will always remain strong and loyal to the Eternal High Priest whose mission you continue.

And now We would like to address a few words to you, the wonderful parents who today have seen a dream fulfilled. We well know the sacrifices which you made for your sons; but these have been rewarded abundantly with the consolations of these days. We are grateful to you for the good example, kind encouragement and constant prayers which helped your sons to the Altar. Realize the precious treasure that is yours in having a son interceding for vou and for all at the Holy Altar of God. We congratulate you and We thank you for your generous offering to the Church.

That you, dear sons, will always be good, exemplary priests, and that you, beloved parents, will always share in the effective selfless work of your sons, We now lovingly and with paternal affection impart to all of you and your dear ones at home Our special Apostolic Benediction.


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