"It's a beautiful moment when you see the unity of the universal church and it's also a moment of responsibility and commitment for me," he told Catholic News Service after he celebrated Mass on the feast of Corpus Christi in Rome's Church of St. Ignatius June 26.He said he was excited about the upcoming pallium ceremony in St. Peter's Basilica June 29 "because I've seen the importance of our communion with the Holy Father, and it also shows the concern of the Holy Father for the people in the United States and the people of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles."Forty-five archbishops from around the world, including five from North America, were to receive a pallium — a circular band of white wool marked with six black crosses — on the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul. All archbishops named within the past year may receive the pallium from the pope in June as a symbol of the archbishop's authority as pastors and unity with the pope.Archbishop Gomez, 59, received his first pallium in 2005 after he was named archbishop of San Antonio. He was installed in March as Los Angeles’ fifth archbishop.Archbishop Gomez led about 300 people on a Rome pilgrimage, which included attending the pallium ceremony at St. Peter's, special Masses celebrated by the archbishop and visits to Rome's other basilicas and sacred places.Richard Pardi of Woodland Hills was part of the archdiocese-sponsored pilgrimage. He told CNS that the pallium ceremony reflects the importance of ritual in the Catholic faith."These rituals go back hundreds and hundreds of years," Pardi said. “And that gives substance to our belief, that it's not just us, it was our fathers, our grandfathers and our whole history of our family that goes back to the beginning of Jesus' crucifixion.”Those who couldn't make the trip could still feel part of the events by following the updates on the archbishop's official Facebook page, which featured status updates as well as photos from the pilgrimage."Dear Fellow Pilgrims: Wherever you are this week, remember that each one of you is a cherished member of the Body of Christ. Each of us is on a spiritual journey to Christ, Our Lord," the archbishop posted on his wall when he arrived in Rome June 24."I carry your intentions with me as we will visit and pray at the ancient holy sites of our Catholic faith," he added.A YouTube video of the archbishop delivering his homily on a very hot Sunday in Rome showed pilgrims laughing when he said his remarks would be very brief because in the front of the church near the lectern was "a little warm — I don't know about that side" back by the pews.The first Hispanic to serve as archbishop of Los Angeles, Archbishop Gomez leads the nation's most populous archdiocese, now numbering nearly 5 million Catholics who come from myriad cultures and traditions.The archdiocese offers Mass in 42 languages, but the ethnically diverse parishioners come together for an annual Mass for cultures at the city cathedral, he said."When I celebrated that Mass, that's when I really realized this is not San Antonio anymore," he laughed, as he recalled the presence of so many people from Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America.The diversity of Catholic traditions and cultures in Los Angeles is in a way a microcosm of the diversity and unity of the universal church. "We are together in the same faith," he said, where no matter what language or popular devotions the different parishioners use, they all show "the same love for the Eucharist, for the pope" and God.When people think of Los Angeles, most people think of Hollywood and movie stars, he said. Yet what he has found most striking "is the faith of the people. The churches are packed every Sunday, which is beautiful.”He said he sees his first duty as an archbishop is to take care of his priests, both in their formation and in promoting vocations to religious and consecrated life, although he also remains committed to the lay faithful.The archbishop, who was ordained a priest of the Opus Dei prelature, said, "It's important we respond to our Christian vocation where we are whether we are priests or deacons or religious or lay faithful.""We have to be generous and joyful in living our vocation," which is to live holy lives, he said."I think my role as an archbishop is to help everybody be together, to be inspired, excited about the Christian faith and especially to give them hope because life is not easy."By presenting the hope of the Gospel and reminding people of God's love for everyone, people will be able to find the strength and joy to face today's challenges, he said.—CNS{gallery width=100 height=100}gallery/2011/0701/pallium/{/gallery}