Phnom Penh (Agenzia Fides) – “We are here to celebrate the life that God gives us in his Holy Spirit. May peace and joy, forgiveness and faith, love and truth abide in us and lead us to God our Father who loves us so much. The Sacrament of Confirmation, which I will impart to 20 Cambodian, Korean and Filipino young people and adults, reminds us of our mission as baptized: to live the Good News and share it”: this is what Bishop Olivier Schmitthaeusler, Apostolic Vicar of Phnom Penh, said during the Pentecost Mass, celebrated in the Cambodian capital, before an assembly of over 2,000 faithful, in which he administered the sacrament of Confirmation to young people of different nationalities.
In the homily, the Vicar cited the experience of the tower of Babel as “the anti-Pentecost”, a moment in which “men want to become bigger and stronger than God”, while “the Spirit makes us understand each other in different languages because God lives in each of us and unites us in his infinite love”. “Man was created by God and to live with God in the most intimate part of himself. The tower of Babel wanted to destroy this intimate vocation of man”, he adds.
The Vicar continued: “Every human life is the tabernacle of the presence of God. The life of God lives in us. We are a small tabernacle of God’s presence. The frightened apostles saw tongues of fire on their heads. Do we see these little red lights shine in our hearts and in our eyes? The Spirit of God is in us”. Mgr. Schmitthaeusler then recalled that in the sacrament of Confirmation “the Holy Spirit joins our fragile and weak spirit so that our life is enlightened by the presence of God”, giving everyone “responsibility, courage, strength, wisdom, desire to fulfill the will of God”. “Life is sacred, every breath of life is the breath of God. Let us open our hearts and our hands to others, let us build this fraternal family united by the divine presence”, he exhorted.
The Vicar then emphasized missionary awareness, given that the “infinite Love expands our hearts and sends us”, inviting believers to leave their comfort zone, in the family, in the parish, “to go to the streets, to our neighbors, the homeless and the unloved”, where human life is humiliated or abused.
On 26 May, the Bishop also celebrated the rite of Confirmation for 30 candidates in the church of St. Peter in Po Thom, asking the faithful to ask themselves questions: “How to promote the development of the Church and society?” In virtue of the Sacrament of Confirmation, he remarked, “we must find a way to engage ourselves in society, to establish relations with all humanity, to live with love, sincerity and justice, to take care of the marginalized, in order to create one great family”. (PA) (Agenzia Fides, 10/6/2019)