On the day of the diocesan WYD and with his eyes turned to Lisbon in 2023, Pope Francis urges young people to be free, authentic, and critically aware of society so that, with Jesus, they can reign for justice, love and peace.
Bianca Fraccalvieri – Vatican City
Being able to dream: this is Pope Francis’ message to young people on the day he celebrates World Youth Day at the diocesan level.
The Pontiff celebrated Holy Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica and in his homily commented on the readings this Sunday for the Solemnity of Christ the King of the Universe. In a special way, he reflected on two images.
The first, taken from the Apocalypse: “He comes in the midst of the clouds”. The second image is that of the Gospel, when Christ, standing before Pilate, says to him: “I am king.”
As for the first, Francis explains that the Lord comes from above, and his kingdom will never end. God comes at night, through the often dark clouds that accumulate over our lives. It is necessary to recognize Him, look beyond the night, looking up to see Him in the darkness.
Lifting your eyes, “get up” this is even the invitation that the Pope makes in the Message dedicated to young people, to accompany this year on the journey towards Lisbon, for the WYD in August 2023. An arduous but fascinating task.
But it was to the verb “dream” that Francisco dedicated the deepest passages of his homily. The Pontiff thanked the young people when they make Jesus the dream of their lives, when they are able to fulfill their dreams with courage, when they dream of fraternity, solidarity, justice and peace – dreams that correspond to those of the Gospel.
“Don’t be afraid to open up to meet Him, who loves your own dreams and helps you to realize them.” A young man who is not capable of dreaming, Francisco said, became old before his time. And he asks them to dream making noise, because it means they don’t want to live in the night, nor asleep or anesthetized. But daydreaming, dreamers who remain open to the surprises of the Holy Spirit.
Free youth, critical conscience of society
On the second image – “I am King” – Francis recalls that the Kingdom of Jesus is different from the kingdoms of the world: “God does not reign, to increase his power and crush others; he does not reign with armies and with force. His is the Kingdom of love, of the one who gives his life for the salvation of others”.
Jesus’ freedom is fascinating, the Pope continues. Let us let it touch us within, move us, and arouse in us the courage of the truth.
We are not here to be enchanted by the sirens of the world, but to take over our life, to cling to life by living it fully.
“In the freedom of Jesus we also find the courage to go against the current: not against someone, like the victimizers and the intriguers who always blame others. Not that; but against the unhealthy current of our selfish, closed and rigid self, to follow in Jesus’ trail.”
Francis exhorts young people to be free, authentic and critical of society’s conscience to, with Jesus, reign for justice, love and peace: