Do not make excuses about not having time to pray, he added. “Remove the other things, because praying is the bishop’s first duty.”
Pope Francis also advised the bishops-elect to go out of their way to make time for their priests: “If you learn that a priest has called you, call him the same day or the day after. And with this he will know that he has a father.”
“May the Lord make you grow on this path of closeness, in this way you will better imitate the Lord, because he has always been close and is always close to us, and with his closeness, which is a compassionate and tender closeness, he carries us forward,” Francis concluded his homily. “And may Our Lady watch over you.”
During the consecration, the bishops-elect promised to preach the gospel with faithfulness and perseverance, to protect the deposit of faith, to care for Catholics as a father, to be welcoming and merciful to the poor, to obey the pope, to pray tirelessly, and “to go in search of the lost sheep to bring them back to the fold of Christ.”
Marini and Ferrada then prostrated themselves on the ground while the Litany of Saints was sung.
Afterward, Pope Francis laid his hands on each of the men as they knelt in front of him. Other bishops also laid their hands on the heads of the bishops-elect.
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