26 March 2013
While blessing the sacramental oils at the Archdiocese’s annual Chrism Mass, Bishop Pat Power urged his congregation to take up the new pope’s challenge to be protectors.
“Pope Francis tells us being a protector means protecting all creation and the beauty of the world in the spirit of St Francis of Assisi,” he told the gathering at St Christopher’s Cathedral.
He said the Pope had brought “fresh hope and joy”, and he hoped this would make a difference to the numbers of people who felt alienated by the Church.
“When I celebrated this Chrism Mass two years ago and again last year as I was retiring, I expressed sadness that so many good people no longer feel at home in the life of the Catholic Church,” he told the large congregation at St Christopher’s Cathedral.
“I stated on both occasions that in my ministry as bishop, I have tried to reach out to those on the edges both in the Church and in the wider community. I don’t think any of us can be comfortable in the family of the Church without asking what is causing so many of our sisters and brothers to walk away.”
He prayed that “if those alienated people I spoke about are able to see us take up the challenges Pope Francis has put before us, they may be given new heart and hope”.
The Chrism Mass, at which the clergy of the Archdiocese gather for the blessing of the holy oils to be used in the sacraments in parishes during the year, is a key Holy Week ceremony.
To see the full text of Bishop Power's homily, click here.