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Catholic News Service is a leading agency for religious news. It was founded by U.S. bishops in 1920, and is an office of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Pope Francis embraced a woman as he met with disabled people during his general audience in St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican June 13.Photo Credits: Paul Haring | Catholic News ServiceVATICAN CITY — The worst enemies in a young person’s life aren’t the problems they may face, Pope Francis said.
biggest dangers are being unwilling to adapt, mediocrity by settling
for the status quo, and fear, he said at his general audience in St.
Peter’s Square June 13.
“It is necessary to ask the heavenly
father for the gift of healthy restlessness for today’s young people,
the ability to not settle for a life without beauty, without color,” he
said. “If young people are not hungry for an authentic life, where will
humanity end up?”
The pope said he was beginning a new series of
audience talks on the Ten Commandments and how Jesus leads people from
the law to its fulfillment.
He asked pilgrims to reflect on the
reading from the Gospel of Mark and Jesus’ response to a young, wealthy
man who asked what was needed to inherit eternal life. This question
reflects the burning human desire for a full and dignified life, the
pope said, but the challenge is “how to get there? What path to take?”
pope said some people believe this restlessness, this desire to live a
better life, is too dangerous and should be tamped down.
like to say, especially to young people, our worst enemy is not concrete
problems” no matter how serious or tragic they may be.
biggest danger in life is a bad spirit of adapting that is not meekness
or humility, but is mediocrity, pusillanimity,” that is, cowardice or
fear, and making the excuse for doing nothing by saying, “that’s just
the way I am.”
“Where will humanity end up with young people who are tame (and) not restless?” he asked.
to Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati’s insistence that it is better to live
fully than to just get by, the pope asked the crowd whether a kid who
is “mediocre has a future or not.” The pope agreed with their answer,
“No. He just sits there. He doesn’t grow” and mature.
maturity, he said, is coming to realize and accept one’s limits, and it
is also seeing what is lacking in one’s life, just as Jesus said the
rich young man: “You are lacking in one thing. Go, sell what you have,
and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven; then come,
This invitation to leave behind everything and follow
the Lord is “not a proposal of poverty, but of riches,” the real
treasure of everlasting life, he said.
If told to choose between having “the original” or just a copy, who would choose just a copy, the pope asked.
the challenge: to find the original, not the copy. Jesus doesn’t offer
substitutes, but offers real life, real love, real wealth,” he said.
difficult to see why young people would choose then to follow those
Christians who are not choosing “the original, if they see us putting up
with half measures. It is terrible to encounter Christians (who only
go) halfway, dwarf Christians who only grow a certain height and have a
tiny, closed heart,” he said.
Young people need the example of Christians who invite them to grow, “to go beyond” and look for more.
have to start from reality,” with the way things are, “in order to take
that leap into what is lacking. We have to scrutinize the ordinary in
order to open ourselves up to the extraordinary.”
CITY — As 32 nations get ready to vie for the World Cup in Russia, Pope
Francis greeted players, organizers and soccer fans who will be
following “this event that overcomes all borders.”
important sports event become an occasion for encounter, dialogue and
fraternity between different cultures and religions, promoting
solidarity and peace between nations,” said the Argentine pope, who is
an avid soccer fan.
He made his remarks in an appeal at the end of his general audience in St. Peter’s Square June 13.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup will be held in Russia from June 14 to July 15.
ball being used in the first match — Russia vs. Saudi Arabia — had been
taken to the International Space Station by a Russian cosmonaut in
March and returned to Earth June 3.
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