The following is the Message sent by the Holy Father Francis on the occasion of the 145th anniversary of the founding of the Italian newspaper “Il Messaggero”:
Message of the Holy Father
To Dr. Francesco Gaetano Caltagirone
President of Il Messaggero
I am particularly glad to send you and your collaborators my greetings on the occasion of the 145th anniversary of the founding of Il Messaggero, and I welcome the reflection you are carrying out on this occasion.
Your national daily newspaper, which has traversed Italian history from the end of the nineteenth century to the present day, reporting on it, bringing together the different faces of the country and reflecting on the challenges that have marked it, still represents a strong point in journalism and information. Yours is a task I would like to encourage and promote especially for its ethical dimension, since we find ourselves in a social and cultural age in which it is becoming increasingly difficult to discern the truth from fake news.
In the context of this commemoration, you are also dwelling on the significance of the forthcoming Jubilee 2025, an event that will closely concern the city of Rome, but which will affect Europe and the entire world. The Eternal City will once again become the pole of attraction for relaunching the Christian message and rekindling hope for those who, in life's travails and inner yearnings, will come here as pilgrims.
From the rich biblical tradition, we inherit the meaning of the Jubilee year, primarily as a favourable and propitious time to restore reconciliation with God and among ourselves to the centre of our lives, breaking the chains of evil, slavery and violence that disfigure the beauty of human dignity. On such occasions, the Catholic Church wishes to recall the importance of rethinking our own existence and of asking for forgiveness for our shortcomings, in the certainty that the God of mercy and compassion will come to renew us and reconcile us.
It is not, however – it is useful to remember – just a religious practice as an end it itself, but a process that, despite initiating from individuals, involves all interpersonal relationships, with the intention of promoting a more just and fraternal view of society, in which errors and faults are forgiven, those who make mistakes are helped to recover, justice is restored and, in this way, reconciliation and the construction of a more solidarity-based and above all more human world are promoted.
In this sense, the Jubilee has a value that is not exclusively religious, but which also implies an ethical, moral, social and cultural rebirth, capable of healing the wounds caused by injustice and the various forms of violence, of overcoming economic inequalities and discrimination, of restoring a collective climate of trust and hope, and of initiating processes of integral human growth, with special attention to the weakest and most vulnerable.
It is therefore a year in which the biblical theme of “liberation” takes shape, with all its anthropological and community implications: embarking on actions and processes capable of liberating people, cities, nations and peoples from every form of slavery and degradation.
It will then be particularly important to reflect on what we experienced and suffered during the pandemic, which “made us experience first-hand not only the tragedy of dying alone, but also the uncertainty and fleetingness of existence, and in doing so, has changed our very way of life”; with reference to this, it will be necessary to live the forthcoming Jubilee with enthusiasm and participation, which “can contribute greatly to restoring a climate of hope and trust as a prelude to the renewal and rebirth that we so urgently desire” (Letter to Archbishop Fisichella for the Jubilee 2025).
I conclude by thanking you for the valuable service you render to the community, reiterating my best wishes for this important event. I greet you, sending my blessing to each one of you. And I ask you, please, to pray for me.
Vatican City, 6 June 2023