Rev. Joseph Corpora to be appointed Missionary of Mercy by Pope Francis

Author: Michael O. Garvey

Rev. Joseph Corpora, C.S.C. Rev. Joseph Corpora, C.S.C.

Rev. Joseph Corpora, C.S.C., director of university-school partnerships for the University of Notre Dame’s Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE), has received a mandate from Pope Francis to be a Missionary of Mercy.

The Missionaries are some 800 priests worldwide selected by the pope to be special confessors and “living signs” of God’s forgiveness during the Holy Year of Mercy officially proclaimed in his letter, Misericordiae Vultus (The Face of Mercy), last year. Father Corpora will be among those traveling to Rome to meet with Pope Francis and to be commissioned on Ash Wednesday (Feb. 10) in a celebration at St. Peter’s Basilica.

“I am very excited, grateful and humbled by the Holy Father’s invitation,” Father Corpora said, "and I hope everyone at Notre Dame will pray for me that I might do some good in spreading the mercy of God by being a person of mercy and compassion. I know something of God’s mercy because my deepest self-definition is that I am a sinner whose sins are forgiven. God has been so merciful to me.”

In his Misericordiae Vultus letter, Pope Francis described the service he expects of the Missionaries. “During Lent of this Holy Year,” he wrote, “I intend to send out Missionaries of Mercy. They will be a sign of the Church’s maternal solicitude for the People of God, enabling them to enter the profound richness of this mystery so fundamental to the faith. There will be priests to whom I will grant the authority to pardon even those sins reserved to the Holy See, so that the breadth of their mandate as confessors will be even clearer. They will be, above all, living signs of the Father’s readiness to welcome those in search of his pardon.”

In addition to his work with ACE, Father Corpora works in Notre Dame’s campus ministry, serving as chaplain to Latino students. He also is a priest-in-residence in Dillon Hall.