Pope Francis has published a letter to all priests, both diocesan and religious, “to thank you in the name of the holy and faithful People of God for all that you do for them, and to encourage you never to forget the words that the Lord spoke with great love to us on the day of our ordination. Those words are the source of our joy: ‘I no longer call you servants… I call you friends.’”
The pope also expressed his gratitude for the “holiness of the faithful People of God,” saying “let us be grateful for each of them, and in their witness find support and encouragement.”
The Holy Father published the letter on Aug. 4, 2019, the 160th anniversary of the death of the Curé d’Ars St. John Vianney, who is the patron saint of parish priests.
Read the full letter on the Vatican website (multiple languages)