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Papa Francis The First | His Holiness Papa Francisco

A Grain of Wheat...

Yesterday was the 35th anniversary of the death of Archbishop Oscar Romero. Last Sunday, Archbishop Gomez of Los Angeles preached a powerful homily honoring Oscar Romero.

“One must not love oneself so much as to avoid getting involved in the risks of life that history demands of us. … But whoever out of love for Christ gives themselves to the service of others will live, like the grain of wheat that dies. … Only in dying does it produce the harvest. … Whoever offers their life out of love for Christ, and in service to others, will live like the seed that dies.”ii
Just a few minutes after he spoke those words, Monseñor Romero was dead. Shot through the heart by an assassin’s bullet as he offered the gifts of bread and wine for the holy Eucharist.

Pope Francis has many of the same qualities as well as the deep faith we saw in Oscar Romero. It’s not surprising that he will beatify Romero in May. They come from the same people, and they are remarkable for being one with the people they pastor. Pope Francis has demonstrated countless times the courage to speak the truth, to call for mercy but also for justice, to follow the way of Christ wherever it leads.

I recall that when I came to Franciscan Media, then St. Anthony Messenger Press, in 1992, we had just published Romero’s diary, and I was proud to be associated with the company that was doing such good work. I am thrilled that we’re now publishing a series of books spotlighting the best of the writings and homilies of Pope Francis.

Photo courtesy of Catholic News Service/Octavio Duran


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"And now let us begin this journey, the Bishop and people, this journey of the Church of Rome, which presides in charity over all the Churches, a journey of brotherhood in love, of mutual trust. Let us always pray for one another. Let us pray for the whole world that there might be a great sense of brotherhood.

I will now give my blessing to you and to the whole world, to all men and women of good will."

-Papa Francis quote

He does not know you, yet he prays for you.
He will most likely never meet you, yet he loves you.

This is your chance to show your love, for as the Bible teaches, "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven."