Every five years, bishops make a visit to Rome to give a report on the state of affairs in their diocese. During the visit, the Bishop meets with the Holy Father, as well as the numerous offices that oversee the day-to-day business of the Universal Church.
These visits are referred to as the ad limina apostolorum, or, to the threshold of the apostles. One of the primary goals of such visits is for each bishop to renew his apostolic ministry, as a successor to the Apostles, by visiting and celebrating Mass at the tombs of St. Peter (St. Peter’s Basilica) and St. Paul (St. Paul Outside the walls.) Masses are also celebrated at the other major basilicas in Rome.
On Saturday, I depart for my first ad limina visit. As I depart, please know that I carry the People of God of this great state and diocese with me in prayer. We have much to be proud of with regards to the vibrancy of the faith and ministries present here, and it gives me great comfort to make such a positive report during this visit to the Holy Father and Holy See.
Yes, we also have work to do in further advancing God’s Kingdom and strengthening the good that is already present, but we build upon a strong foundation, and move into the future with great hope and expectation of our Savior’s return.
Please pray for me during these days, and rest assured all of you go with me in heart and prayer ‘to the threshold of the apostles.’