Vatican City, Jun 13, 2010 / 08:58 am
Thousands of pilgrims and faithful gathered at noon Sunday in St. Peter’s Square to pray the Angelus with the Holy Father. Before the prayer, he said that the fruits of the recently ended Year for Priests could never be measured, but are already visible and will continue to be ever more so.
“The priest is a gift from the heart of Christ, a gift for the Church and for the world. From the heart of the Son of God, overflowing with love, all the goods of the Church spring forth,” proclaimed Pope Benedict XVI. “One of those goods is the vocations of those men who, conquered by the Lord Jesus, leave everything behind to dedicate themselves completely to the Christian community, following the example of the Good Shepherd.”
The Holy Father described the priest as having been formed by “the same charity of Christ, that love which compelled him to give his life for his friends and to forgive his enemies.”
“Therefore,” he continued, “priests are the primary builders of the civilization of love.”