Pope's Address to the Papal Gentlemen

This morning, Pope Francis received in audience — in the Clementine Hall of the Apostolic Vatican Palace — the Gentlemen of His Holiness accompanied by their families.

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Here is a translation of the words of greeting that the Pope addressed to those present.

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Dear Friends,

I greet you and thank you for your service, which consists in receiving and accompanying the different personalities that come to meet the Successor of Peter, as well as in attending ceremonies and official receptions. Through you, dear Gentlemen, the different Authorities and other Personalities, who come to visit the See of Peter, have their first contacts with this House and receive their first impressions. As your name states, useful for this purpose are gifts of courtesy and cordiality, useful in making people feel at ease. These human qualities find their most authentic root in a life animated by faith, which gives witness of evangelical coherence without staining it with a worldly attitude.

We are now at the end of the Christmas season and we have all been touched by the wonder of God made a baby in the grotto of Bethlehem, by the wonder of the Son of God who becomes, out of love for us, Son of Mary and makes himself small and fragile. Let us be attentive and pray so that this interior light does not dissolve and that we be able to bring to our daily, family and professional life, the joy of the faith, which is expressed in charity, benevolence and tenderness.

I entrust you and your families to Mary, Mother of God and our Mother, that she may accompany you and sustain you. I bless you and wish you a serene and profitable year. And let us pray for one another!

[Translation by ZENIT]
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