A 'priest of the towel'

2013-09-18 L’Osservatore Romano

Pope Francis also laid his hands on the head of Msgr Konrad Krajewski – since last 3 August in charge of the Elemosineria Apostolica [the Papal Alms and Blessings Office] – during the rite of episcopal ordination on Tuesday afternoon.  17 September, at the Altar of the Chair in St Peter's Basilica. The Holy Father took part in the entire celebration, taking his place on the right side of the altar; and at the end of the explanatory rights he exchanged the embrace of peace with the new bishop.

At the Eucharistic celebration – at which Cardinal Giuseppe Bertello, President of the Governorate of Vatican City State, presided as consecrator with the two co-consecrators, Archbishop Piero Marini, President of the Pontifical Committee for International Eucharistic Congresses, and Władysław Ziólek, Bishop emeritus of Łódź – 10 cardinals were present. Five of them concelebrated, together with 45 bishops and more than 300 priests. Archbishop Angelo Becciu, Substitute of the Secretariat of State, presented the  candidate for episcopal ordination at the beginning of the rite. He then read out the Pope's mandate.

At the end, after the singing of the Te Deum, the new bishop addressed a brief greeting to those present. “Today I would like to thank Pope Francis for his prayers and his trust”, he said, emphasizing that the Holy Father was giving him “the possibility to worship and touch Jesus in poor, abandoned and marginalized people. He is enabling me to discover the face of Jesus in the face of my neighbour. He wants me to go and seek them out without waiting for them to knock at the door of the Vatican”.

Your Holiness”, he continued, addressing the Pope, “I know that I must be “a priest of the basin and towel”.