Brendan Gilligan

OTHER NEWS

Northern Ireland bishops urge MLAs to reject abortion legislation

In a letter addressed to the Members of the Northern Ireland Legislative Assembly (MLA), the country’s bishops express their concern over the "extreme" nature of Westminster’s Regulations regarding a new law decriminalising abortion in Northern Ireland. Ahead of the...

Bishop hails key workers as the ‘new icons of esteem’

Speaking in his homily during the latest weekly Mass for the sick, their families, care workers and NHS staff, Bishop of Middlesbrough Terence Drainey said he believed the increasing desire to foster the common good seen in recent months will last beyond the current...

Pope asks consecrated virgins to help the poor, stand up for justice

Women who have discerned a call to consecrate their virginity to God in service to the Church must be living signs of God's love in the world, especially where too many people live in poverty or suffer from discrimination, Pope Francis said. "Be women of mercy,...

Healing people more important than the economy, says Pope Francis

Pope Francis said on Sunday that healing people was "more important" than the economy, as countries around the world continue to ease lockdown restrictions. The Pope made his first address from his window overlooking St Peter's Square in three months. Many thronged to...

Pope urges Romanian leaders to care for country’s poor, disadvantaged

Pope Francis told Romanian leaders a country’s success is measured by how it treats and cares for its most vulnerable citizens, especially the poor and disadvantaged.

The path to building an inclusive society is one where every person is seen as a brother or sister and “where the weak, the poor and the least are no longer seen as undesirables that keep the ‘machine’ from functioning,” the pope told civil authorities and diplomats today (Friday), the first day of his visit to Romania.

“Only to the extent that a society is concerned for its most disadvantaged members, can it be considered truly civil,” he said.

The pope had been welcomed at Henri Coanda International Airport in Otopeni, 10 miles north of the centre of Bucharest, by President Klaus Iohannis and his wife, Carmen Iohannis, as well as the country’s bishops.

Hundreds of well-wishers cheered and waved flags bearing the blue, yellow and red colours of Romania as well as the yellow and white colours of Vatican City State.

Thousands more lined the streets of Bucharest to welcome the papal motorcade as Pope Francis made his way to Cotroceni Palace, the presidential palace, where he met privately with President Iohannis.

Signing the palace guestbook, the pope wrote: “May God bless the Romanian people and may they walk united in peace and prosperity under the maternal gaze of the Virgin Mary.”

The pope was then greeted by Romanian Prime Minister Viorica Dancila before making his speech to the country’s civil authorities and members of the diplomatic corps.

Thirty years after the fall of communist control of the country, the pope reflected on the path towards democracy “from a regime that oppressed civil and religious liberty, isolated the nation from other European countries and led to the stagnation of its economy and the exhaustion of its creative powers.”

Nevertheless, the pope said, Romania still faces challenges, especially “the several million people who have had to leave their homes and country in order to seek new opportunities for employment and a dignified existence.”

“I pay homage to the sacrifices endured by so many sons and daughters of Romania who, by their culture, their distinctive identity and their industriousness, have enriched those countries to which they have emigrated and by the fruit of their hard work have helped their families who have remained at home,” he said.

Emphasising the need for “heart and soul” to confront the challenges, Pope Francis said that the Christian churches can help promote political and social actions that places human dignity and the common good above all.

The Catholic Church, he said, hopes to “contribute to the building up of a society and of civil and spiritual life in your beautiful land of Romania.”

Photo: Pope Francis walks with President Klaus Iohannis of Romania during a welcoming ceremony at the entrance of the Cotroceni Palace in Bucharest, Romania.

Share

OTHER NEWS

Northern Ireland bishops urge MLAs to reject abortion legislation

In a letter addressed to the Members of the Northern Ireland Legislative Assembly (MLA), the country’s bishops express their concern over the "extreme" nature of Westminster’s Regulations regarding a new law decriminalising abortion in Northern Ireland. Ahead of the...

Bishop hails key workers as the ‘new icons of esteem’

Speaking in his homily during the latest weekly Mass for the sick, their families, care workers and NHS staff, Bishop of Middlesbrough Terence Drainey said he believed the increasing desire to foster the common good seen in recent months will last beyond the current...

Pope asks consecrated virgins to help the poor, stand up for justice

Women who have discerned a call to consecrate their virginity to God in service to the Church must be living signs of God's love in the world, especially where too many people live in poverty or suffer from discrimination, Pope Francis said. "Be women of mercy,...

Healing people more important than the economy, says Pope Francis

Pope Francis said on Sunday that healing people was "more important" than the economy, as countries around the world continue to ease lockdown restrictions. The Pope made his first address from his window overlooking St Peter's Square in three months. Many thronged to...