Montevideo (Agenzia Fides) - "In the new blessed, Monsignor Jacinto Vera, we contemplate the beauty of a holy life. It is the beauty of the Easter of Christ and the Church which manifest themselves with all their saving power. Those who are hungry are not offered an ideology, but the presence of Christ's love; to those who thirst for God the Word and the sacraments are offered, to those who thirst for peace the one who is the Prince of Peace is offered: Jesus Christ". These are the words of Cardinal Paulo Cezar Costa, Archbishop of Brasilia, Envoy of Pope Francis, who on the afternoon of Saturday, 6 May, presided over the solemn Eucharistic Concelebration at the Estádio Centenário of Montevideo during which Msgr. Jacinto Vera was proclaimed blessed, first Bishop of Uruguay (see Fides, 21/12/2022; 31/1/2023). "The Blessed testifies to us the beauty of following Jesus. Beauty that unifies our life, that allows us to have a vision of the totality of God's plan and design. This indicates a path of unity in times of fragmentation".
Commenting on the biblical readings of the day, the Cardinal highlighted that secularization "is a reality in the life of our Latin American countries", where people are losing the sense of God, of his Gospel. "Secularization should not scare us, but must be an opportunity for witnessing and proclaiming the Faith" he exhorted, inviting us to look at Monsignor Vera's commitment so that the proclamation of the Gospel reaches every corner of the country. "Secularization is a field of evangelization", he underlined, but it is necessary "to enter into the logic of those who are without God, through new methods, paths, above all through culture.
To propose the good news of Jesus Christ. This is the great challenge". The faith has left Uruguay many monuments, history, culture, art, living witnesses, that speak of the faith of our ancestors, "they cry out to us today the proclamation and witness of the faith. This Catholic cultural matrix has given solid foundations to national culture".
In the Gospel, Jesus, responding to Thomas, said: "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no one comes to the Father except through me". "He is God's truth for us – underlined the Cardinal. The Truth for men and women of faith is not a philosophy, an idea, an ideology, but Jesus Christ himself. Jesus is the truth that fulfills life, existence, that opens the existence to the communication of truth, to mission". "It was before the tabernacle that Monsignor Jacinto Vera discovered that the only way to pacify the country divided by discord and political strife was through mission. He did not seek pacification through politics or other means, but rather on the basis of the truth of faith. Peaceful faith. Announced by the mouth and gestures of the blessed, he helped to pacify the country".
In his homily, Cardinal Paulo Cezar Costa emphasized that "it is faith that moved the life of Monsignor Jacinto Vera and that moves our life today. Faith opens our life to active charity, to the proclamation and witness of Jesus Christ". Then quoting Pope Francis, he recalled that "today, in the conscience of the Church, mission involves everyone. Every Christian is a missionary to the extent that he encounters God's love in Jesus Christ". In the conclusion of his homily he reiterated again: "The Church becomes an evangelizer, a missionary when every Catholic assumes his mission as a missionary disciple of Jesus Christ in his workplace, study, leisure, etc. Help us today, in the witness of faith and in the mission, this great blessed Monsignor Jacinto Vera. May each of us renew our mission as a disciple - missionary, Amen".
After the Marian prayer of the Regina Caeli on Sunday, 6 May, Pope Francis thus recalled the beatification of Bishop Jacinto Vera, who lived in the 19th century: " A pastor who took care of his people, he bore witness to the Gospel with generous missionary zeal, promoting social reconciliation in the tense atmosphere of the civil war". (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 10/5/2023)