What happened during the meeting?
We experienced three broad moments of reflection. The first day was dedicated to the synodal path, with particular attention to the method used: because the Synod on Youth teaches in the first place a style of walking, of giving everyone a chance to speak, of listening. The second day was dedicated to the Apostolic Exhortation Christus Vivit, so that everyone could make it their own. In the third we discussed the great theme of reception: how to inaugurate new paths, new itineraries, new perspectives?
Finally, on Saturday morning, the Pope welcomed us in audience, greeted the young people one by one and presented the themes of the three upcoming WYDs, punctuated by the verb "Get up" – (stand up, rise – tr note) in a perspective of Resurrection and awareness of what young people can say and give to the world and to the Church.
What are the main perspectives now?
I refer to the words that have emerged from the Synodal journey: first of all, "Synodality". The great request of the young to the Church is for it to know how to live and work together, that it be a luminous sign of fraternity. The young people reminded us that communion is the first and most important form of evangelization.
The second word is "Vocation". Each one of us is called to give their part, in a missionary perspective. The big question that Pope Francis asks all young people is not "Who am I?"; but "Who am I for?"
And the third is "Discernment". Pope Francis does not offer us pre-packaged solutions, but asks young people to put themselves in front of the Lord in a contemplative and exciting dynamic, in which we are all active subjects.
What does all this mean for the Salesian Family?
Mainly it means making young people travel companions. Not the young as recipients, but as active subjects of the Pastoral. Don Bosco, indeed, always believed in young people: the founding act of the Congregation was signed by boys aged 14-15. The Church today asks us a renewed enthusiasm to start from there.
Looking at the General Chapter, what kind of Salesians for today's youth?
A Salesian who trusts young people; who knows how to question themselves before the challenges of our time, in a renewed cultural industriousness; and that he is aware of his specific vocation towards the youngest and poorest young people.