Here is a ZENIT translation of the address Pope Francis gave today to Functionaries and Agents of the Inspectorate of Public Security at the Vatican, for the exchange of New Year’s greetings.
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Dear Agents of Public Security!
I am happy to meet with you, also this year, to express to you my gratitude for your valuable service to the Apostolic See and to Vatican City. I greet you all cordially, beginning with Dr. Maria Rosa Maiorino, whom I thank for her courteous words. To each one of you, who form part of the Inspectorate of Public Security at the Vatican, I renew the expression of my appreciation for the work you do with professionalism and a sense of duty. And I am also grateful for your presence during the pastoral visits I undertake in Italy. I greet, and thank for their presence, the Prefect, Alessandro Pansa, Head of the Italian Police; the Vice Heads; the Quaestor of Rome, Dr. Nicolo D’Angelo, and the other representatives of the State Police.
Our meeting today is also more significant because it is held in the context of the Holy Year of Mercy, this event of spiritual importance, which has already seen flocking to Rome in these first days, many pilgrims from all over the world. You Directors, Functionaries and Agents of Public Security are also called to a greater commitment so that the celebrations and events connected with the Extraordinary Jubilee unfold in a regular and profitable way. The external order, over which you watch with attentive concern, will not fail to favor the interior order, permeated of serenity and peace.
Christmastide has just ended, but in many places – such as here in Saint Peter’s Square – the Crib is still exhibited, which invites us to keep within ourselves, following the example of Our Lady, the mystery we have celebrated. Mary has offered us Jesus as the beginning of a new life. That Child is the true consoler of hearts, the true light that illuminates our life, overcoming the darkness of sin. In Him we contemplated the merciful face of God the Father, and we received the renewed invitation to be converted to love and to forgiveness. May this spiritual experience accompany us during the whole of the Holy Year. May the Jubilee of Mercy be for all an intense time of the spirit, time of reconciliation with God and with brothers. We are all in need of being reconciled, all of us. We all have some issue with a brother, in the family, with a friend … And this is the time of reconciliation, to make peace. In this perspective, I also wish each one of you to live in the best way possible the forthcoming months, receiving the gifts of grace that this event of salvation offers. I hope you will experience the interior consolation, which the shepherds of Bethlehem experienced.
Dear brothers and sisters, may the Lord protect you in the fulfilment of the task you carry out in collaboration with the other Security Forces. May Mary Most Holy, Mother of Jesus and our Mother, be always at your side. May she obtain the divine blessing on your aspirations and plans, and help you, with her maternal assistance, to walk in the footsteps of her Son Jesus. From my part, I assure of a constant remembrance in prayer. And this is true. When I go out to the Square, when I go out and see you, I pray for you, and I do so from my heart. And I ask you, please, to pray for me, because this isn’t easy work! Pray for me, this is what I ask of you. I wish you and your families a Happy New Year and I bless you from my heart.[Original text: Italian] [Translation by ZENIT]