The Archbishop of Birmingham, the Most Reverend Bernard Longley welcomed more than two hundred candidates for election on Sunday at the Mother Church of the Archdiocese, St Chad’s Cathedral.
The candidates came from 47 parishes – a snapshot of the whole picture – there are 220 parishes in the Archdiocese of Birmingham, so many more candidates who were unable to come to the Cathedral on Sunday will be received into the Church at Easter.
In his homily, the Archbishop said: “The Catholic Church embraces you today and your lives are to reflect what it means to be catholic. You will be part of a universal family of believers held together by Christ through the faith we proclaim, the sacraments we celebrate and the pastors we follow. Pope Francis is the Church’s supreme pastor and we sense our communion with him very powerfully in this celebration.”
He highlighted that the candidates had been especially chosen: “You are already united with all of us in a special way as we begin our Lenten pilgrimage, but you can feel strengthened by the knowledge that through our prayers and sustained by our actions the Church elects or
chooses you in a way that expresses the choice of Christ himself. That is what lies at the heart of today’s Rite of Election.”
And called on them “to go out and bear witness to your faith in the communities where you live and work, among your families and friends by the example of holy and generous lives.”
To download Archbishop Longley’s homily please use the link in the top right-hand corner of this article.
News: Rite of Election
For more information, faith stories and Statistics from the Rite of Election across England and Wales.