Student Thanks Pope Francis on His Third Anniversary

Each year, Bishop Edward K. Braxton invites Catholic school students to write a personal letter to Pope Francis on the anniversary of his election as pope.

Pope Francis, celebrated the third anniversary of his election to the Chair of Peter on March 13th. From the many outstanding letters sent to him by the principals, the bishop chose the letter written by eighth-grader, Mandy Fields, from St. Theresa of Avila in Salem.

The bishop sent the letter, along with his personal greetings and the greetings of the priests, deacons, religious and lay faithful of the diocese to the Vatican by means of the diplomatic pouch of the Apostolic Nunciature.

The bishop encourages all the people of the diocese to continue to pray for the 266th successor of St. Peter as he continues his journey as leader of the Catholic Church. He sent his own letter to Pope Francis on his third anniversary

Following is the letter from Mandy Fields:

Dear Pope Francis,
Congratulations on your upcoming third anniversary on March 13, 2013 of this year. With your help, many have turned to God where they are able to find hope once again. People are finally realizing that this world is not a dark, black and white photograph, but a place full of color and life where everybody should be loved. They are opening their hearts to one another and showing the love of God in a positive way. In my community I see many people showing acts of kindness towards each other.

Sadly this world is not perfect, only God, and we do not always do as we should. That’s why we should forgive others and be kind to everyone. When you called the Jubilee Year of Mercy I had hope and knew that this world was capable of a great change. We should all be forgiving and loving. When are we proving that we are a child of God when we don’t show respect for one another? We should never bring each other down, but raise each other up. As you said, “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” We should not only say what we did wrong at Reconciliation, but truly say sorry face to face to our brothers and sisters that we had done wrong to. I hope that this year will really show people that we are all called to be a follower of Christ and that we should show that through what we do. One action or one word can make a huge difference in not just one person’s life but the world itself.
Thank you for being a great example for others. Your work to make this world better is really showing. I thank you for showing how just one person can have such a big impact on others to change as a community, as a nation, and as a world. I really enjoy having you as pope, and I can’t express how much you have influenced me and many others to change. God has really shown his work in my life.  Thank you for all your work, time and effort. I pray that God will keep you safe from any danger and harm. May God keep shining down His wisdom and love on the world so that more beauty and grace will become of it.

Mandy Fields
St. Theresa of Avila School, Salem