go beyond the confines

Jul 23, 2013

I suspect the most reliable place to look for inspiration this week is Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Yesterday Pope Francis arrived to spend the week with an expected 2 million young people (aged 18-35) from all over the world. Each day I will share a couple of paragraphs from the pope’s address to the gathering. If you want more you can get to the complete talk from the link at the bottom of each posting.

These words from the pope are certainly his own, but they have been prepared in collaboration with the young people of the world, and those in positions of leadership in the Church. So, as I say, it would be difficult to find more solid inspiration anywhere this week.

The paragraphs below are from the pope’s response to the welcome he received on arriving yesterday.
…I have learned that, to gain access to the Brazilian people, it is necessary to pass through its great heart; so let me knock gently at this door. I ask permission to come in and spend this week with you. I have neither silver nor gold, but I bring with me the most precious thing given to me: Jesus Christ! I have come in his name, to feed the flame of fraternal love that burns in every heart; and I wish my greeting to reach one and all: The peace of Christ be with you! 
…As you know, the principal reason for my visit to Brazil goes beyond its borders. I have actually come for World Youth Day. I am here to meet young people coming from all over the world, drawn to the open arms of Christ the Redeemer. They want to find a refuge in his embrace, close to his heart, to listen again to his clear and powerful appeal: “Go and make disciples of all nations”… 
…[The young]  also find in Christ the answer to their highest aspirations, held in common, and they can satisfy the hunger for a pure truth and an authentic love which binds them together in spite of differences…
…Christ offers them space, knowing that there is no force more powerful than the one released from the hearts of young people when they have been conquered by the experience of friendship with him. Christ has confidence in young people and entrusts them with the very future of his mission, “Go and make disciples”. Go beyond the confines of what is humanly possible and create a world of brothers and sisters! And young people have confidence in Christ: they are not afraid to risk for him the only life they have, because they know they will not be disappointed… 
…Here it is common for parents to say, “Our children are the apple of our eyes”. What a beautiful expression of Brazilian wisdom this is, applying to young people an image drawn from our eyes, which are the window through which light enters into us, granting us the miracle of sight! What would become of us if we didn’t look after our eyes? How could we move forward? I hope that, during this week, each one of us will ask ourselves this thought-provoking question…

Complete text at this link 

Video news bulletin at this link

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