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The Pope to young people: Shout with your lives that Christ lives and reigns!

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At the mass for the passage of the symbols of WYD, in which a representation of Central American and Panamanian boys, gave the Cross of the Day and the icon of the Virgin Salus Populi Romani to the Portuguese, who will celebrate in 2023 the next WYD, in this liturgical ceremony, the Pope in his homily advised young people, told them not to renounce big dreams, they depend on big decisions, as today’s Gospel says. And he advised them: “Each one of us becomes what we choose, for better or for worse”

Patricia Ynestroza-Vatican City

The Pope in his homily, addressing the youth of the world, asked them not to give up “big dreams. Let us not be content with what is due. The Lord does not want us to cut our horizons, he does not want us parked on the fringes of life, but moving towards high goals, with joy and boldness. We are not made to dream about the holidays or the weekend, but to fulfill God’s dreams in this world. He has made us capable of dreaming to embrace the beauty of life. And the works of mercy are the most beautiful works in life. If you have dreams of true glory, not of the glory of the world that comes and goes, but of the glory of God, this is the way. Because works of mercy give glory to God more than anything else. “

Making big dreams takes big decisions

And to realize these great dreams, the Holy Father advised young people that they must make great decisions. And this is what today’s Gospel speaks of. At the moment of “final judgment the Lord is based on the decisions we make. It almost seems that he does not judge: he separates the sheep from the goats, but whether it is good or bad is up to us. He only deduces the consequences of our decisions, reveals them and respects them ”.

So that the life of each one, “life, he said, is the time of firm, fundamental, eternal decisions. Banal choices lead to a banal life, big choices make life great ”.

Each of us becomes what we choose

In effect, each of us becomes what we choose, for better and for worse. “If we choose to steal we become thieves, if we choose to think about ourselves we become selfish, if we choose to hate we become furious, if we choose to spend hours in front of the mobile we become dependent.” But if we choose God, if we choose God, “we become more loved every day and if we choose to love we become happy.” Because as the Pope affirmed, the “beauty of decisions depends on love. Jesus knows that if we live closed and indifferent we remain paralyzed, but if we spend ourselves for others we become free. The Lord of life wants us full of life and gives us the secret of life: it is possessed only by giving it up ”.

Any decision has its obstacles

But any decision we make has its obstacles, which make choices arduous, and these are: fear, insecurity, unanswered whys. However, to overcome these obstacles, Francisco affirmed that “love asks us to go further, that we not remain subject to the whys of life, waiting for an answer from Heaven to arrive. No, love impels us to go from the whys to the for whom, from why I live to who I live for, from why this happens to me to for whom I can do good. For whom? Not only for myself: life is already full of decisions that we make looking to our benefit, to have a degree, friends, a house, to satisfy our own hobbies and interests. But we run the risk that the years go by thinking about ourselves without beginning to love. Manzoni gives us some beautiful advice: «You should think more about doing good than being well; and thus it would end up being better »(The couple, chapter XXXVIII)”.

And in this 21st century, the previous obstacles to achieving those great dreams are joined by the consumption fever, which “drugs the heart with superfluous things. There is the obsession with fun, which seems the only way to avoid problems, and instead only postpones problems. In these times, the Pope said that there is a fixation on claiming one’s rights, forgetting the duty to help. Another obstacle is the great illusion about love, which seems like something that “you have to live by dint of emotions and“ I like it ”, when loving is above all: gift, choice and sacrifice. To choose, especially today, is not to allow oneself to be domesticated by homogenization, it is to not allow oneself to be anesthetized by the consumer mechanisms that deactivate originality, it is to know how to give up by pretending and showing oneself. Choosing life is fighting against the mentality of throwaway and all and fast, to lead existence towards the goal of Heaven, towards the dreams of God ”.

Instead of telling us what I want to do, say what is good for me

Many choices arise every day in the heart. The Pope gives one more piece of advice to his young people, one last piece of advice so that they “train to choose well. If we look inside ourselves, we see that two different questions often arise in us. One is: What do I want to do? It is a question that is often misleading, because it suggests that the important thing is to think about yourself and follow all the desires and impulses that one has. However, the question that the Holy Spirit suggests to the heart is another: not what do I want to do, but what is good for you? Here is the choice for each day: What do I want to do or what is good for me? From this inner search, banal choices or life choices can be born. Let us look at Jesus, let us ask him for the courage to choose what is good for us, to follow his footsteps on the path of love, and find joy ”.

Works of mercy that transform our lives

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In his homily, the Pope, referring to the Gospel of Saint Matthew’s day, spoke of the list of “the gifts that the Lord gives us, the gifts that he desires for the eternal weddings with us in Heaven.” Jesus, “before giving us his love on the cross, leaves us his last will. He tells us that the good that we do to one of his younger brothers — hungry, thirsty, foreigners, poor, sick, incarcerated — we will do to him. “

They are the works of mercy, which transform our life into eternity. The Pope said that each of us can ask ourselves: Do I put them into practice? Do I do something for those who need it? Or do I do good only to loved ones and friends? Do I help the one who cannot give me back? Am I a friend of a poor person? Because in each one of our brothers, those who need us most, He is there, Jesus. “I am there”, Jesus tells you, “I wait for you there, where you cannot imagine and where you may not even want to look, there in the poor.”

“I’m there, where the dominant thought — according to which life goes well if it goes well for me — shows no interest. I’m thereJesus says to you too, young man who seeks to fulfill the dreams of life. “

A young saint, whose charisma is always current

And remembering the conversion of Saint Martin of Tours, the Pontiff continued his homily: “I’m thereJesus told a young soldier centuries ago. He was eighteen years old and not yet baptized. One day he saw a poor man who asked people for help, but he did not receive it because “everyone was passing by.” And that young man, “understood that if others had no compassion, it was because the poor man was reserved for him.” But he had nothing with him, just his military cape. Then he tore it in half and gave one half to the poor man, being mocked by some around him. The next night he had a dream: he saw Jesus, dressed in the piece of the cloak with which he had covered the poor man. And he heard him say: «Martín me you have covered with this dress “Saint Martin was a young man who had that dream because he had lived it, even without knowing it, like the righteous in today’s Gospel.”

Diocesan WYD on the day of the Solemnity of Christ the King

At the end of the Mass, at the time of the passage of the WYD cross, it was announced that from now on, diocesan WYD, instead of being celebrated on Palm Sunday, will be celebrated on the Solemnity of Christ the King.

Words of the Pope addressing the youth of the world:

At the end of this Eucharistic celebration, I cordially greet all those present and all those who follow us through the media. I address a special greeting to the young people of Panama and Portugal, represented by the two delegations that will soon make the significant gesture of the passing of the Cross and the icon of the Virgin Mary, Salvation of the Roman People, symbols of the World Youth Days. It is an important step in the pilgrimage that will take us to Lisbon in the year 2023.

And as we prepare for the next intercontinental day of WYD, I would also like to relaunch its celebration in the local Churches. Thirty-five years after the creation of WYD, after having listened to different opinions and the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, competent in youth ministry, I have decided to transfer the diocesan celebration of WYD to Sunday of Ramos to Domingo de Cristo Rey, starting next year. In the center remains the Mystery of Jesus Christ the Redeemer of man, as Saint John Paul II, the initiator and patron of WYD, always demonstrated.

Dear young people: Shout with your lives that Christ lives and reigns! If you keep quiet, the stones will scream! (cf. Lc 19,40).

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