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Pope honors new Jesuit saint, emphasizes joy of encountering the risen Christ

April 25, 2014

On the evening of April 24, Pope Francis presided at a Mass of thanksgiving for the canonization of St. José de Anchieta (1534-97), a Spanish Jesuit priest and missionary to Brazil.

The Mass took place at Sant'Ignazio Church in Rome.

When St. José de Anchieta was 19, St. Ignatius of Loyola sent him to Brazil. “He founded a nation,” Pope Francis preached. “He put the cultural foundations of a nation in Jesus Christ. He had not studied theology. He had not studied philosophy. He was a boy. But he had felt the gaze of Jesus Christ.”

During his homily, Pope Francis reflected on the joy of Christ’s disciples when they realized he had truly risen from the dead. The Church, he continued, grows by means of this “apostolic joy,” the “foundational joy” of proclaiming Jesus Christ.


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