HomeNewsPope Francis encourages seminarians to embrace pastoral leadership with compassion

Pope Francis encourages seminarians to embrace pastoral leadership with compassion

Pope Francis urged seminarians to embody Christ’s love as they prepare for priesthood during a meeting in Seville, Spain on the eve of Good Shepherd Sunday.

During his address, the pontiff emphasized the importance of seminarians surrendering themselves to God and their communities, especially to those most in need. 

“With your hearts in God, with open hands, and a big smile, share the joy of the Gospel with all those you encounter,” he advised. 

He highlighted four key areas of focus for their formation: spiritual life, studies, community life, and apostolic activity, noting that an integrated approach in these areas is essential for their development into effective shepherds.

Pope Francis also referenced Blessed Cardinal Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, a respected figure in Andalusia known for his pastoral care and impact on priests. 

The Pope recalled Spínola’s views on the balance between virtue and knowledge, cautioning that “knowledge without virtue puffs up and does not build, and virtue without knowledge builds but does not instruct.”

He encouraged the seminarians to make the most of their time in the seminary, cultivate their faith, and prepare to spread the Gospel with a loving heart, open arms, and a welcoming smile. 

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