2016-03-14 11:17:00

Reflections on the anniversary of Pope Francis' election

(Vatican Radio) “We need the bold, Francis revolution of tenderness, mercy and normalcy now more than ever before.” In a reflection published on the Salt + Light website, Father Thomas Rosica, CSB, the English language attaché to the Holy See Press Office, looks back on three years of Pope Francis’ papacy. Mercy, said Fr Rosica, is a hallmark of Pope Francis’ ministry: “His rallying cry has been ‘mercy’ for the past three years.”

Father Rosica acknowledges that some people see in Pope Francis “a bold, brazen revolutionary sent to rock the boat,” while others worry that “he has caused a massive shipwreck.” But for the Canadian priest, “the only revolution that Pope Francis has inaugurated is a revolution of tenderness.”

During the past three years, Pope Francis has also inaugurated “a revolution of normalcy.” These, said Fr Rosica, “are the revolutions at the heart and soul of Pope Francis’ ministry.”

If someone asks, “Will the Francis reform succeed?” Fr Rosica answers with a resounding “Yes!”

Francis’ reform is inevitable because it is not emanating from Assisi, Loyola, Manresa or even from Rome, as significant as those holy places may be! It is based on a great story coming other lands where we find Bethlehem, Nazareth, Nain, Emmaus, Mount Tabor, Galilee, Jerusalem and the Decapolis: the lands of the Bible. Pope Francis has based his Petrine Ministry on the Gospel of the fisherman of Galilee who was Son of God and Lord, Savior and Redeemer of the human family.

Father Rosica concluded his reflection with a Prayer for Pope Francis:

Lord our God,

We thank you for always providing shepherds to guide the Church.

We thank you most especially for Francis,
the one you have chosen to be our chief shepherd
and guide at this moment in history.

Bless him with health and vision, boldness and courage,
wisdom and compassion, and boundless joy and hope.

Make him an instrument of your peace, compassion and mercy,
In your mercy you called Francis and you call each of us
to cling to Jesus, the rock of fidelity and truth.

May Pope Francis inspire us to be better Christians,
faithful Catholics and architects and citizens
of the civilization of love that your son entrusted to us.

We ask this in Jesus’ name, who lives with you forever and ever.


(Born on the wings of World Youth Day 2002 in Canada, Salt + Light is a unique instrument of the New Evangelization. It is dedicated to being – and helping others become – the salt of the earth and the light of the world. The mission of Salt + Light is to proclaim Jesus Christ and the joy of the Gospel to the world by telling stories of hope that bring people closer to Christ and the Catholic faith.)

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