“Let us welcome Pope Francis with an open Heart”

The pastoral letter, focusing on the Papal visit will be read in churches today and tomorrow.

Pope Francis waves as he arrives for the weekly general audience at the Vatican, September 11, 2019. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

A great blessing which will help the Maltese grow in faith was the way the Bishops of Malta and Gozo described the impending visit by His Holiness Pope Francis.

In a pastoral letter, focusing on the Papal visit, Archbishop Charles Scicluna, Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Gozo, Bishop Mario Grech and Joseph Galea-Curmi, Auxiliary Bishop of Malta penned a warm message to the faithfull.

The pastoral letter will be read in Churches on Saturday and Sunday.

In the pastoral letter the bishops mentioned how in his meditation on the passage from the Acts of the Apostles that narrates St Paul’s shipwreck on Malta, Pope Francis had beautiful words for the Maltese people “The Maltese are good, they are gentle, they were already welcoming at that time.”

With unusual kindness

In the Pastoral letter Archbishop Scicluna, Apostolic Administrator Mario Grech and Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Galea Curmi wrote that in his short but meaningful visit to Malta, Pope Francis will celebrate and pray with the Maltese and Gozitan people and will show us how we can live in true reconciliation together and treat each other with dignity and “unusual kindness”.

Every human life is precious

The Pastoral letter mentions how the Pope, during his visit, would also like to meet migrants just as he did in other places he visited in the Mediterranean.

The letter makes reference to a recent heartfelt appeal by Pope Francis: “As Christians, we must work together to show migrants God’s love revealed by Jesus Christ. We can and we must bear witness that there are not just hostility and indifference but that every person is precious to God and loved by him.”

Archbishop Scicluna, Apostolic Administrator Mario Grech and Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Galea Curmi wrote that when the Pope visits our country, they would like him to recognise that for those who believe in Jesus Christ, every human life is precious and is to be embraced with love and tenderness – from conception and through all stages of life until natural death.

Witnesses of a living faith

In the pastoral letter, the bishops ask for praying to the Holy Spirit that this visit will help people to live their faith with conviction and to be authentic witnesses by leading a life of integrity, honesty, truth, justice and social commitment, whilst passing on our faith to future generations.

The Pastoral letter invites the Maltese and Gozitan people to prepare for this special visit, mainly through prayer.

Read the pastoral letter here.