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Wednesday, November 6, 2013


Vatican City, 6 November 2013 (VIS) – The communion of holy persons who grow through participation in spiritual goods, and above all the Sacraments, the charisms and charity, was the theme of Pope Francis' catechesis during today's general audience.

In the Sacraments, each one of us is “incorporated in Christ and united with the entire community of believers. Therefore, if one the one hand there is the Church who 'makes' the Sacraments, on the other there are the Sacraments which 'make' the Church, edifying her, generating new sons, and joining them to the holy people of God”. Furthermore, “the Sacraments offer us the impetus to become missionaries, and the apostolic commitment to taking the faith to all places, even the most hostile, is the most authentic fruit of a steadfast sacramental life, inasmuch as it constitutes participation in God's salvific plan, which aims at bringing salvation to all”.

The second aspect of communion in holy things is the communion of charisms. “The Holy Spirit dispenses a multitude of gifts and spiritual graces to the faithful … for the edification of the Church”, explained the Pope. “Therefore, they are not given for the benefit of the recipient, but for use by the people of God. … The charisms are particular graces, given to some for the good of many others”, and “they are born in the conscience and experience of certain persons, called to put their gifts at the service of the community. In particular, these spiritual gifts are are of benefit to the sanctity of the Church and her mission”.

Charity is the third aspect of this communion with spiritual goods. “The charisms are important in the life of the Christian community, but they are always means of growing in charity, which St. Paul places above the charisms. Without love”, Pope Francis emphasised, “even the most extraordinary gifts are in vain, while the smallest of our gestures of love brings good to all. … This brotherly solidarity is not a rhetorical figure, a figure of speech, but rather an integral part of communion between Christians. If we live this solidarity, we are a sign to the world, a 'sacrament' of God's love”.

This is not that easy charity that we offer between ourselves, but instead something deeper: it is a communion that makes us able to enter into the joy and the pain of others in order to sincerely make them our own. And often we are too arid, indifferent and detached, and instead of transmitting brotherliness, we transmit ill-humour, coldness and selfishness. And with ill-humour, coldness and selfishness, one cannot help the Church to grow; the Church grows only with the love that comes from the Holy Spirit”.

And I would now like to ask of you an act of charity”, said the Holy Father to the tens of thousands of faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square, and added jokingly, “Don't worry! It's not a collection! Before coming to the Square, I went to see a seriously ill child aged just one and a half. Her mother and father pray and implore the Lord to cure their daughter. She is called Noemi and she smiled, poor girl. Let us carry out an act of love; we do not know her but she is a baptized child, she is one of us, a Christian. Let us ask the Lord to help her in this moment and to give her health: first in silence, and then let us pray the Hail Mary”.

Silence fell over the square for a moment, after which the Pope said, “And now let us pray together to the Virgin for the health of Noemi. … Thank you for this act of charity”, he concluded, after more than fifty thousand people recited the Hail Mary in unison.


Vatican City, 6 November 2013 (VIS) – After today's general audience, the Pope extended his customary greetings to more than forty-five thousand participants gathered in St. Peter's Square. He dedicated some words to the Hungarian Romany population who are participating in a national pilgrimage to Rome in these days. “You have brought with you the cross that was blessed in this square ten years ago by Blessed John Paul II”, he said. “From Christ's cross, sign of love, mercy and reconciliation, continue to draw the necessary hope and strength to be apostles among your people”.


Vatican City, 6 November 2013 (VIS) - Today, the Holy Father received in audience Henrique Capriles Radonski, governor of the state of Miranda, Venezuela.


Vatican City, 6 November 2013 (VIS) - Today, the Holy Father:

- appointed Archbishop Santo Gangemi, apostolic nuncio to Papua Nuova Guinea and the Solomon Islands, as apostolic nuncio to Guinea.

- appointed Fr. Ailton Menegussi of the clergy of Sao Mateus, Brazil, as bishop of Crateus (area 21,817, population 394,000, Catholics 361,000, priests 31, permanent deacons 4, religious 38), Brazil. The bishop-elect was born in Nova Venecia, Brazil in 1962, and was ordained a priest in 1998. He has served in a number of roles, including parish vicar in Sao Mateus; rector of the minor seminary “Joao XXIII” in Sao Mateus; rector of the major seminary of Sao Mateus in Carapina, archdiocese of Vitoria do Espirito Santo; spiritual father of the major seminary “Maria, Mae da Igreja”; co-ordinator of the diocesan vocational team in Sao Mateus; and member of the council of formation of the diocese of Sao Mateus. He is currently priest of the parish “Sao Francisco de Assis” in Barra de Sao Francisco.

- appointed Bishop Salvatore Ronald Matano of Burlington, U.S.A., as bishop of Rochester (area 18,400, population 1,580,000, Catholics 461,297, priests 235, permanent deacons 145, religious 148), U.S.A. Bishop Matano was born in Providence, U.S.A. in 1946, was ordained to the priesthood in 1971 and received episcopal ordination in 2005.

- appointed Fr. Pierre Jubinville, C.S.Sp., as bishop of San Pedro (area 20,002, population 453,000, Catholics 416,000, priests 28, religious 47), Paraguay. The bishop-elect was born in Ottawa, Canada in 1960 and ordained to the priesthood in 1988. He holds a licentiate in religious sciences from the Institut Catholique de Paris. He has carried out missionary works in Kongolo, Democratic Republic of Congo, and has served in a number of pastoral roles, including: missionary in Mexico, missionary in Paraguay, priest in the parish of “San Francisco de Asis” in Lima, San Pedro; and superior of the Spiritan community in Asuncion, Paraguay. He is currently first general assistant of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit in Rome.

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