Cardinal Amato called the martyr a “man of deep spirituality ... having a strong desire to see the achievement of unity between the Orthodox and Catholic Churches.”
After recounting Blessed Ghika's life, the cardinal reflected on three aspects of his pastoral charity: an ecumenical heart; his active involvement in serving refugees, the sick, and those wounded in war; and his passion and death under a Stalinist regime.
The beatified martyr “proposed holiness as the indispensable means for promoting Christian unity,” Cardinal Amato said. He emphasized that ecumenism must be based on love and good faith, avoiding “unnecessary and harmful polemics.”
According to Cardinal Amato, Blessed Ghika “saw that the persecution and martyrdom of millions of Orthodox Christians, especially in Russia and Eastern Europe by communist regimes, would guarantee a true resurrection which, in the logic of the Paschal mystery, would lead to the resurgence of unity.”
The blessed's apostolate of caring for the poor included visiting prisoners, guarding Jews from deportation to death camps during World War II, and directing American food aid to Orthodox monasteries in Moldova during a 1946 famine, Cardinal Amato said.
Finishing his homily, he upheld the martyr's example of faith and prayer during his long martyrdom. Comparing Blessed Ghika to the prophet Isaiah, Cardinal Amato recalled his last words: “I am dying with a clear conscience that I did all I could (for) the true Church of Christ, during a sorrowful time for my country and for the civilized world.”
The cardinal added that the beatification Mass “should be lived as a prophetic sign of reconciliation and peace, a sad reminder of a past that should not be repeated.”
Because of Blessed Ghika's link with the Paris archdiocese, the Mass was attended by the city's bishop, Cardinal André Vingt-Trois, along with “a group of French pilgrims,” according to Grigore.
Fr. Terhes explained that the martyr’s example is one of courage for Catholics, through both his conversion and “by deciding not to comply with the law of an ungodly government.” The priest praised Blessed Ghika's decision to remain in Romania “knowing that would face the risk of being arrested.”
As Christians, Fr. Terhes reflected, “we can learn from his example that regardless of our heritage or family, each one of us is called to serve Jesus Christ.”