Monsignor Kovács Gergely was consecrated and installed as the new Roman Catholic Archbishop of Alba Iulia in a ceremony celebrated on Saturday at the St. Michael Cathedral of Alba Iulia, with dozens of ecclesiastical officials – cardinals, bishops, representatives of the other Churches in Transylvania – attending.
Thousands of faithful, mostly from the Harghita and Covasna counties, but also from Hungary, braved the cold to witness the event on the esplanade of the cathedral, the best preserved medieval vestige of Central Europe, the beginnings of which can be traced back before the year 1000, Agerpres informs.
Kovács Gergely, 52, was born in Targu Secuiesc and before his appointment to this position by a decree issued by Pope Francis on December 24, 2019, served as head of office at the Pontifical Council of Culture.
“Let’s walk together!’ is the exhortation of Holy Father Pope Francis, but also of Bishop Áron Márton: ‘We must learn to commit ourselves to one another and work together in all walks of life’. (…) Being geographically scattered, our archdiocese is characterized by diversity. We must move forward together: preserving our own cultural identity, but also respecting the differences, the others. Respect, appreciation and mutual support will help us in the common work meant to please God. Let’s walk together!,” said the new Roman-Catholic Archbishop of Alba Iulia in his address, according to the translation provided to the media by the organizers.
President Iohannis: Let us respect identities, beliefs, overcome divisions
In the message conveyed on Saturday on the occasion of the installation of Monsignor Kovacs Gergely as the new Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Alba-Iulia, President Klaus Iohannis references Pope Francis’ exhortation made at the Marian Shrine of Sumuleu Ciuc “to walk together” and “respect our identities and beliefs, but at the same time overcome divisions”.
“The appointment of Your Holiness as leader of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Alba Iulia by His Holiness Pope Francis and your consecration as minister of the faithful of this archdiocese gives me the happy opportunity to congratulate you and send you the most sincere wishes of good health, spiritual joy and fruitful service in this important mission entrusted to you by the Roman Catholic Church. Through the appointment of Your Excellency, we understand that His Holiness sends the archdiocese, but also the entire Romanian society, another message of love and encouragement. We recall with pleasure last year’s state, pastoral and ecumenical visit of His Holiness to Romania. At Sumuleu Ciuc, the Holy Father Pope Francis repeated the call for us to walk together, to be 21st-century pilgrims. He urged us to respect our identities and beliefs, but at the same time overcome divisions, imagine and build together the world of tomorrow, which we will hand over to the future generations,” President Iohannis said in his message.