Detroit — The faithful of the Archdiocese of Detroit aren’t the only ones praying for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the archdiocese following last year’s Synod 16.
It turns out the archdiocese has a powerful prayer warrior in Rome, too.
In a letter made public by the office of Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron, Pope Francis offered his prayers and congratulations for the archdiocese in the wake of the historic synod.
In the letter, dated Dec. 19, 2016, the pope told Archbishop Vigneron he prays that the synod “will provide sure guidance and direction to God’s People in Detroit as they strive to appropriate, live and proclaim the joy of the Gospel.”
The pope’s letter was a response to Archbishop Vigneron’s own letter sent to the Holy Father last year thanking him for the Extraordinary Holy Year of Mercy, the archbishop’s office said.
Pope Francis’ response was forwarded to the archdiocese by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States.
The pope’s letter reads, in full:
“To the Most Reverend Allen H. Vigneron, Archbishop of Detroit: Thank you for your kind letter expressing gratitude for the Extraordinary Holy Year of Mercy. I appreciate your thoughtful gesture and I was most pleased to learn of the spiritual fruits borne by the celebration of the Jubilee in the Archdiocese of Detroit.
“Please be assured of my prayers for you and for the clergy, religious and lay faithful entrusted to your care. In a particular way, I join you in praying that the recently-concluded Archdiocesan Synod will provide sure guidance and direction to God’s People in Detroit as they strive to appropriate, live and proclaim the joy of the Gospel. To all of you I cordially impart my Apostolic Blessing.
“From the Vatican, 19 December 2016. Franciscus.”
Archbishop Pierre also added his own congratulations and prayers, writing, “I too wish to express my gratitude and congratulations for the many successful initiatives you have undertaken to meet the pastoral challenges in the Archdiocese of Detroit, including your recently-concluded Synod.”
The Holy Year of Mercy in the Archdiocese of Detroit included the popular pilgrimage to the Holy Door at the Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament, through which more than 10,000 pilgrims passed during the jubilee year.