Dearest brothers and sisters of the diocese of Pontoise!
You are gathered today in the joy of this “Grand Assembly” of Pentecost. Together with you, like the pastor with his flock, there presides my dear brother in the episcopate, Msgr. Stanislas Lalanne, to whom I address a special greeting.
How good it is to see how fifteen thousand Christians pray with hearts willing to receive the Holy Spirit of God! His effective action will bring you abundant fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, benevolence, goodness, faithfulness, meekness and self-mastery (cf. Gal 5: 22-23).
Today, more than a thousand young people and adults will receive the sacrament of Confirmation. You will thus become bold witnesses of God’s love in a wounded world, especially in the existential peripheries where countless men and women await the Lord’s consolation. May that consolation arrive through you, authentic missionary disciples of Christ; may it reach those who are discouraged along the way, through the tenderness of your words and the caresses of your deeds, and in this way propagate God’s mercy and love, spreading it like the perfume of the holy oil of Confirmation that you will receive today!
May Mary, the Mother of Jesus who gathers us in prayer, help you to receive the Holy Spirit fruitfully in your life. I bless you all with affection. And please, do not forget to pray for me! Thank you.