Colombia - Hope in Latin America has a young face

08 September 2017

(ANS - Bogotá) - During the second day of his visit to Colombia, Pope Francis spoke about the role of young people in the meeting with the Latin American Episcopal Council (CELAM) board of directors.

His speech referred to young people and began with a concrete warning to the bishops not to be taken in by caricatures or commonplace regarding youngsters: The Pope told them, "Look them in their eyes and seek in them the courage of hope. It is not true that they are ready to repeat the past. Open concrete spaces for them in the churches to you entrusted; invest time and resources in their formation. Provide incisive educational programs and goals for them to achieve, asking young people, as parents ask their children, to realize their potential, educating their hearts to the joy of being profound, not superficiality. Do not settle for the rhetoric or choices written in pastoral plans and never put into practice."

He referred to the 2019 meeting as a privileged moment to examine the Virgin' example and her total availability to God's plan, and to retrace with young people this path and the future that God has prepared for them ... "It is up to us to present great proposals to young people in order to arouse in them the courage to takes risks, together with God, and to offer and make themselves available, like the Virgin Mary."

Another important and special topic was the role of women in the Church. "It is women who, with meticulous patience, light up and re-ignite the flame of faith. It is our serious duty to understand, respect, appreciate, promote the ecclesial and social strength of what women accomplish," said Pope Francis.

In this sense, he said emphatically, "If we want a novel and vital phase of faith on this continent, we will not obtain it without women."


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