After speaking more briefly of his other pastoral visits during the year, he concluded (my translation):
We must not deceive ourselves, certainly: the secularism of our times and the pressure of the ideological presumptions to which the secularist conscience tends, with its exclusive claim to definitive rationality, pose no small problem. We know this and we are aware of the burden of the struggle that is imposed on us in these times. But we also know that the Lord keeps his promise: "Behold, I am with you all days, even to the end of the world." (Mt 28.20) In this joyful certainty, welcoming the incentive of the reflections of the Aparecida for us also to renew our being with Christ, let us go forward with trust into the New Year. Let us go under the maternal gaze of the Aparecida; of Her as the one designated "handmaid of the Lord". Her protection keeps us safe and full of hope.