Archbishop Farrell’s words of welcome for Archbishop Luis Mariano Montemayor

Archbishop Farrell’s words of welcome for Archbishop Luis Mariano Montemayor

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Archbishop Montemayor and Archbishop Farrell

Archbishop Dermot Farrell’s Words of Welcome on the Occasion of the Liturgical Reception of Archbishop Luis Mariano Montemayor, Apostolic Nuncio, in St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral, Dublin

Sunday, June 11, 2023

Brothers and sisters, dear friends in Christ, it is with joy that we gather here in the Pro-Cathedral this morning on this Feast of the Bread of Life, God’s gift to us, the Body and Blood of Christ—Corpus Christi, as we call it in our liturgical tradition. It is a feast in which we give thanks for the closeness of our Lord in the sacrament of the Eucharist, and for his faithfulness to his people whom he has called into life, and into the wonderful adventure of following his Son on the journey through time, the journey to the fullness of life (see John 10:10).

This morning we also celebrate the closeness and the faithfulness of the Holy Father to the Church in Dublin, as we welcome liturgically the new Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Luis Mariano Montemayor, the Holy Father’s representative in Ireland. Archbishop Montemayor, on behalf of the faithful, clergy, religious, and those who live a consecrated life, I welcome you to Dublin—to the place, and to the Church called into life in this place. We are very glad that you have come to be with us.

You know the pastoral and ecclesial landscape in Dublin and across the Island of Ireland is being transformed. As reflected in the results of the recent census, the Ireland of today is becoming more diverse, and parts of the island have—for the first time in our history—a distinctly multi-cultural feel. Walk a few hundred metres from this Pro-cathedral, and you will encounter a vibrant Asian community, right in the centre of this city. This vibrancy and diversity—both cultural and religious—are to be welcomed. Here in Dublin, the faith of these new communities brings much life: I have been both moved and heartened by the celebration of the living faith of our sisters and brothers from the Philippines, from Poland, from the lands of Latin America, as well as the faith of our sisters and brothers from the many Orthodox Churches who have found a home in Ireland. This celebration here this morning, in the presence of the Cantores Minores from Helsinki Cathedral, joining our Palestrina Choir in singing the praises of God, also bears witness to ongoing ecumenical exchange, so essential if the Body of Christ is to become all that our Heavenly Father wills us to be. Our Lutheran sisters and brothers are most welcome.

Of course, this cultural and religious diversity brings both challenges and opportunities for the Church in Dublin. Archbishop Montemayor, as one who has worked in the diplomatic service of the Holy See since 1991—you have been Apostolic Nuncio to places as far flung as Columbia (2018–23), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (2015–18) and Senegal, Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, as well as Apostolic Delegate to Mauritania (2008–15)—you bring a breadth of experience and a knowledge of the universal Church. It is this global Church that Pope Francis, himself a pastor from the Global South wants to put before us. Coming most recently from Columbia, you are familiar with the legacy of civil conflict and the challenges of building peace and reconciliation. In that same spirit you bring with you a reminder of Pope Francis’s call to move beyond being a self-referential Church towards renewal and conversion, towards our mission “to transform society” by embodying Christian values in the world (see Address of Pope Francis to the Members of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, 22nd April 2023).

Archbishop Montemayor welcomed to St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral

In your mother tongue there is a saying, “Mi casa, tu casa”—my house is your house. Maybe we can say this morning “Nuestra casa, tu casa.” Our house, our church is your house, your church. Tá fáilte romhat. You are welcome, truly welcome, among us. May the Lord bless your ministry and your mission, as—in the words of the Letter to the Ephesians—you seek “to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Eph 4:3).

+Dermot Farrell,
Archbishop of Dublin