TO PARTICIPANTS IN THE CONFERENCE ORGANIZED BY THE CONGREGATION FOR THE CLERGY
Hall of Blessing Friday, 12 March 2010
Your Eminences, Dear Brothers in the Episcopate and in the Priesthood, Distinguished Participants,
I am glad to meet you on this particular occasion and I greet you all with affection. I address a special thought to Cardinal Cláudio Hummes, Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, and thank him for his words to me. My gratitude also goes to the entire Dicastery for the dedication with which it coordinates the many initiatives of the Year for Priests that include this Theological Convention on the theme: "Faithfulness of Christ, Faithfulness of the Priest".
I am delighted with this initiative that has gathered more than 50 Bishops and more than 500 priests, many of whom are national or diocesan directors of the clergy and of continuing formation.
Your attention to the themes that concern the ministerial priesthood is one of the fruits of this special Year, which I chose to inaugurate precisely in order "to deepen the commitment of all priests to interior renewal for the sake of a more forceful and incisive witness to the Gospel in today‘s world" (Letter for the Inauguration of the Year for Priests, 6 June 2009; L‘Osservatore Romano English edition, 24 June, p. 3).