let yourselves be possessed by his love
holy thursday
capoliveri, livorno


beloved sons, today i look upon you with joy and with motherly predilection.

this is your feast day.

this is your pasch.

gathered about the bishops, you are renewing the promises which you made on the day of your priestly ordination.

they are the promises of your love and your fidelity to jesus, who has chosen you and has called you to share in his high and eternal priesthood.

by means of you, jesus is still able to immolate himself each day for your salvation.

let yourselves be possessed by his love.

how much jesus loves you.

for love of you, the word of the father became incarnate in my virginal womb, submitted himself to the limitations of time and place, was born into his human life, and grew up like a flower in the garden of my motherly love.

for love of you, jesus knew exile during his infancy, poverty and fatigue during his adolescence, misunderstanding and rejection during the years of his public mission.

for love of you, he was subjected to betrayal and outrage, to judgement and condemnation, to crucifixion and death on the cross.

how much jesus loves you.

let yourselves be possessed by his love.

‘having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.’

above all, for love of you, jesus has instituted the new sacrifice and the new priesthood.

thus, in every part of the earth, from the east to the west, there may be presented to the heavenly father a pure offering, the perfect sacrifice which appeases his divine justice, which makes reparation for all the sin of man, for the salvation and the life of the world.

and you, beloved sons, you are the priests chosen by him, to renew everywhere this, his sacrifice of the new and eternal alliance.

let yourselves be possessed by his love.

do not look at your miseries.

do not be discouraged by your weaknesses.

do not count your sins.

do not go back over your infidelities, but let yourselves be possessed by his love, because the divine charity of the heart of jesus surpasses infinitely every human ingratitude.

in these last times, how many are those priests who weep over their falls, who succumb under the forces of evil which has now been unleashed, who yield to the enticements of a world again become pagan, and who fall under the subtle snares of my adversary and yours.

beloved sons, even if there is being repeated the action of peter who denies, or that of judas who betrays, or that of the apostles who flee and abandon jesus, open your hearts today to hope, because jesus loves you.

his love overcomes your every human weakness.

on this, your day, let joy be great and peace profound.

with the voice of a mother who ever assists you and leads you, consoles you and encourages you, i invite you today to let yourselves be possessed by his love, so that you too may be priests according to his divine and merciful heart.