The Diocese of Rome met yesterday, May 9, 2019, with its Bishop, Pope Francis, in its Cathedral, the Basilica of Saint John Lateran, to close the pastoral year, which was dedicated to the theme “Memory and Reconciliation.”
According to the Press Office of the Diocese of Rome, the Pope was accompanied for the occasion by the Cardinal Vicar Angelo De Donatis, the Auxiliary Bishops, priests, men and women religious as well as hundreds of laymen belonging to parishes and other ecclesial realities of the Diocese of Rome, including representatives of ecclesial groups, chaplaincies and Catholic schools of the city.
“Vatican News” reported that the meeting included a moment of prayer, the reading of a biblical text and an intervention by the Bishop of Rome. The event ended with the prayer of Compline.
Compline is the last prayer of the Liturgy of the Hours; it is prayed before night rest.
Letter of the Vicar of Rome
Cardinal De Donatis announced the meeting days earlier with a letter sent to the Diocese. In it he affirmed: “the journey of this pastoral year has been very fruitful. After “celebrating” the memory of years spent in growing diocesan communion, “we have entered in the dimension of reconciliation. I know that the prefecture’s penitential celebrations were lived intensely and were a lovely ‘sign’ of communion and renewal. The pastoral visits to the parishes encourage me a lot and I see very encouraging signs of participation and sensibility,” he said
The diocesan meeting with the Pope is inserted in the third part of the annual journey, in which “we want to live listening to the city,” added the Cardinal. The Holy Father will continue to point out the next stages of the diocese’s itinerary.
The next meeting with the Pontiff will take place in St. Peter’s Square on the Vigil of Pentecost, June 8.
Alessandro Gisotti, Director ad interim of the Holy See Press Office, said that during the diocesan meeting, ”the Holy Father greeted a Roma family of the Roman district of Casal Bruciato, victim in recent days of threats and racist insults.”
With his gesture, the Pope wished to express his “closeness and solidarity with the family and the clearest condemnation of all forms of hatred and violence.”