Don't be 'armchair Catholics,' pope tells new archbishops

36 new archbishops called upon to be 'apostles on the go'
Don't be 'armchair Catholics,' pope tells new archbishops

Cardinals stand under umbrellas during the celebration of the Mass for the pallium upon new metropolitan archbishops and the solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul on June 29, 2017 in St Peter's Square at the Vatican. (Alberto Pizzoli/AFP)

The Catholic Church's new cardinals and new archbishops must be willing to risk everything, patiently endure evil and bear crosses like Jesus did, Pope Francis said.

"The Lord answers our prayers. He is faithful to the love we have professed for him, and he stands beside us at times of trial." Just as he accompanied the apostles, "he will do the same for you," the pope told five new cardinals and about 30 archbishops named during the past year.

Pope Francis addressed the new cardinals and archbishops during his homily at a Mass in St. Peter's Square June 29, the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul, who are the patron saints of the Vatican and the city of Rome.

The Mass was celebrated the day after Pope Francis created new cardinals from El Salvador, Mali, Laos, Sweden and Spain. Thirty-six archbishops appointed over the course of the past year were also invited to Rome to concelebrate the feast day Mass with Pope Francis. They came from 26 countries.

Among the Asian archbishop to receive their pallium were Archbishop Moses Costa of Chittagong (Bangladesh), Archbishop Joseph Kalathiparambil of Verapoly (India), Archbishop Robertus Rubiyatmoko of Semarang (Indonesia), Archbishop Simon Poh Hoon Seng of Kuching (Malaysia), Archbishop Gilbert A. Garcera of Lipa (Philippines), Archbishop Martin S. Jumoad of Ozamiz (Philippines), Archbishop Joseph Nguyen Chi Linh of Hue (Vietnam).

In what has become the standard practice, the pope did not place the pallium on new archbishops during the liturgy. Rather, after the Mass, the pope handed each archbishop a pallium folded up in a small, simple wooden box tied with a brown ribbon.

The pallium symbolizes an archbishop's unity with the pope and his authority and responsibility to care for the flock the pope entrusted to him.

People must ask themselves whether they are "'armchair Catholics,' who love to chat about how things are going in the church and the world," he said, or if they are "apostles on the go," who are on fire with love for God and ready to offer their lives for him.

Apostles of Christ "know that they cannot just tread water or take the easy way out, but have to risk putting out into the deep, daily renewing their self-offering," he said.

In different parts of the world, "often in complicit silence, great numbers of Christians are marginalized, vilified, discriminated against, subjected to violence and even death, not infrequently without due intervention on the part of those who could defend their sacrosanct rights," the pope said.

Enduring evil means "imitating Jesus, carrying our burden, shouldering it for his sake and that of others," knowing that the Lord is by one's side.

Full story: Pope tells archbishops not to be ‘armchair Catholics,’ but apostles

Source: Catholic News Service

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