20 March – Launch of Pastoral Letter from Pope Benedict XVI to the Catholics of Ireland – St Patrick’s Cathedral, Armagh
POPE BENEDICT XVI TO THE
CATHOLICS OF IRELAND
20 MARCH 2010
HOMILY GIVEN BY
CARDINAL SEÁN BRADY
ST PATRICK’S CATHEDRAL, ARMAGH
After this Mass I will present to you the Pastoral Letter of Pope Benedict. In that context, I thought the Gospel acclamation this morning very powerful. It says: Blessed are those who, with a noble and generous heart, take the Word of God to themselves and yield a harvest through their perseverance
The Pastoral Letter is not the Word of God. It is the word of the Successor of Peter – who is the Vicar of Christ – the word made flesh.
I know that you are a noble and generous hearted people. I urge you to take this word and read it for yourselves. Read it, little by little. It is written in clear, simple language but it contains deep and rich sentiments. If you persevere in reading it – prayerfully and carefully – I have no doubt but that you will reap a rich harvest both for yourselves and for those you love.
During these weeks of Lent I ask you to make time to pray for an outpouring of God’s mercy and the Holy Spirit’s gift of holiness and strength upon the Church in Ireland.
We must all take the word to heart so that we can have a personal friendship with Jesus. His wounds are the means by which the power of evil is broken and we are reborn to life and hope.