Mass, Juli 7, 2017 / © PHOTO.VA - OSSERVATORE ROMANO

Gift of Workers of the Vatican Industrial Center

A “Particular” Crucifix for the Pope

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“Jesus comes, He knows what work is; He understand us well. He understands us very well,” said Pope Francis at the beginning of his homily of the Mass celebrated on Friday, July 7, 2017, for workers of the Vatican’s industrial center, who received him joyfully, on the occasion of his visit, and gave him  a crucifix made with materials they usually employ for their work.
The visit lasted almost an hour and a half and was reported in detail in the Saturday, July 8, 2017 edition of “L’Osservatore Romano”.
Every part of the crucifix, offered by the Director of the Technical Services on behalf of all, was made by a different Department: the base by the carpenters, the first part by the electricians, the two arms and the bolt on top by the hydraulics engineers and finally the crucified Christ by the smiths.
Pope Francis, who arrived by car, was received by the workers, the employees and those in charge of the technical services, in their work clothes, in a hangar, among tools and machines. The latter was transformed for the occasion, thanks to the contribution of Franciscan Missionary Sisters of Mary, in a nave decorated as is proper for a Eucharistic celebration. The Pope himself gave Communion to the participants and concelebrated the Mass with Father Rafael Garcia de la Serrana Villalobos, Director of the Technical Services, and by Augustinian Father Bruno Silvestrini, parish priest of Saint Anne’s.
During the Prayers of the Faithful, there were prayers for the Pope, the Bishops, the workers, the unemployed and finally for the workers to be able to receive a just salary and not be rendered slaves. The choir was made up of some of the workers.
Before ending his visit, the holy Father conversed with all while sharing a coffee with the those present, and the choir of workers dedicated a song to him of contemporary Argentine singer Fito Paez, “Yo Vengo a Ofrecer Mi Corazon” (I Come to Offer my Heart).
After the Mass, the Bishop of Rome recalled, as he did in the homily, the mourning that affected Sandro Mariotti, isi butler, whose father Luigi died recently. Luigi belonged to the Vatican’s Building Service, said Pope Francis, and from time to time he worked in John Paul II’s apartment who found him still working one evening and invited him to go home to his four children because, he said, “at this hour a father must be with his children.”

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Giuseppe Cesareo

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