“… These are my sins, Father.”
The good priest folded his arms and looked down, thinking intently about my laundry list of sins and grievances I had brought to Confession. After a few moments, he met my gaze and asked,
“Are you familiar with the Angelus?”
There are few moments in our lives when we are both fully known and fully loved, but those are defining moments when we see that our identities are not our masks or our failures or our successes. In moments of authentic knowing and loving we can see that our identity is "child of God", broken, redeemed, known and loved.
Pope Francis visited San Paolo della Croce, a parish on the outskirts of Rome. As part of his visit, he heard confessions, ministered to the elderly and the sick, and spent time answering questions from the parish’s youngest members. Our Holy Father has had some remarkable interactions with children of all kinds during his pontificate (here, here, and here), but there was one at San Paolo that struck me deeply.