Pope Francis to World Apostolic Congress delegates: Find new ways to express God’s mercy

MANILA -- Pope Francis urged the delegates of the 4th World Apostolic Congress on Mercy (WACOM 4) not to give up in searching for and sharing the mercy of God.

"Carry on seeking and finding new ways to express God's mercy," the pontiff said in his message, which was read by Papal Legate Archbishop Philippe Cardinal Barbarin at the start of the Eucharistic Celebration held at the Quadricentennial Pavilion of the University of Santo Tomas in Manila Tuesday evening.

The Archbishop of Lyon, France added, "He also wants you to look for appropriate answers to the social problems of our time."

Barbarin led the concelebrated Mass during the second day of WACOM 4, with Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas as homilist.

For his part, the president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) dared the attendees to be merciful.

"Dare to be merciful, do not be afraid to be merciful," Villegas said.

This year's event carries the theme, "Communion in Mercy; Mission for Mercy", to accelerate the culture of mercy in the Church and in the world.

Villegas noted that fear also prevents the people from being merciful.

"The gospel of mercy will disturb the promoters of the culture of death when you fight the enemy, when you fight evil," he said.

The Lingayen-Dagupan prelate also cited the fear of waiting. "Mercy challenges us to wait for the kairos for the right time, to wait for God's time. We say time is gold, time is money, time lost cannot be recovered... Do not be afraid to wait. Love is patient and love always waits. Do not be afraid to wait even if it takes forever. Do not be afraid to keep quiet and allow the Lord to speak," he said.

WACOM is an international gathering of Divine Mercy devotees and promoters, such as bishops, priests, religious brothers and sisters and the laity. It is convened every three years.

The five-day Church event, which began on Monday, will be held at the National Shrine of Padre Pio in Santo Tomas, Batangas on Wednesday, the National Shrine of the Divine Mercy in the Diocese of Malolos on Thursday, and the Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar in the Diocese of Balanga on Friday. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency