Together with so many from around Australia and the world, the Secular Franciscan Order in Australia mourns the recent loss of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, and Cardinal George Pell, both towering figures in the Catholic Church.
On numerous occasions Pope Benedict met with the Franciscans. Of note was his address to the “Chapter of the Mats” in 2009, where he reminded the three Orders of the Franciscan family to:
“Go, and continue to ‘repair the house’ of the Lord Jesus Christ, his Church. Like Francis, always begin with yourselves. We are the first house that God wants to restore. If you are always able to renew yourselves in the spirit of the Gospel you will continue to help the Pastors of the Church to make her face as Christ’s Bride ever more beautiful. This is what the Pope expects of you today.”
It was also with great sadness that we learnt of the death of Cardinal George Pell. He has left behind a remarkable legacy for his strong leadership in the Catholic Church in Australia, as well as the Holy See. Our nation and Church has lost a monumental figure, and a fierce defender of the faith and Christian morals.
May they rest in the loving heart of our Lord Jesus Christ.