(...) This pains me. I worry when I see young people who have “thrown in the towel” before the game has even begun, who are defeated even before they begin to play. I am saddened to see young people who walk around glumly as if life had no meaning. Deep down, young people like this are bored… and boring, who bore others, and this upsets me. But it is also hard, and troubling, to see young people who waste their lives looking for thrills or a feeling of being alive by taking dark paths and in the end having to pay for it… and pay dearly. Think of so many young people you know, who have chosen this path. It is disturbing to see young people squandering some of the best years of their lives, wasting their energies running after peddlers of false illusions, and they do exist, (where I come from, we call them “vendors of smoke”), who rob you of what is best in you. This pains me. I am sure that among you there are no such persons, but I want to tell you: there are young people that have gone into retirement, who have thrown in the towel before the game has even begun, there are young people who are enthralled by false illusions and end up in nothingness. We are gathered here to help one another, because we do not want to be robbed of the best of ourselves. We don’t want to be robbed of our energy, our joy, our dreams by false hopes. So I ask you: are you looking for empty thrills in life, or do you want to feel a power that can give you a lasting sense of life and fulfilment? Empty thrills or the power of grace? What do you want: deadening thrills or the power of fullness? What do you want? [the power of fullness!] I cannot hear you very well. [the power of fullness!] To find fulfilment, to gain new life, there is a way, a way that is not for sale, that cannot be purchased, a way that is not a thing or an object, but a person. His name is Jesus Christ. I ask you: can you buy Jesus Christ? [No!] Can Jesus Christ be bought at the shops? [No!] Jesus Christ is a gift, a gift from the Father, the gift from our Father. Who is Jesus Christ?

All together! Jesus Christ is a gift! All together! [He is a gift!] He is the Father’s gift. Jesus can give you true passion for life. Jesus can inspire us not to settle for less, but to give the very best of ourselves. Jesus challenges us, spurs us on and helps us keep trying whenever we are tempted to give up. Jesus pushes us to keep our sights high and to dream of great things. You might say to me, “but Father, it is so difficult to dream of great things, it is so difficult to rise up, to be always moving forwards and upwards. Father, I am weak, I fall, and I try but so many times I fall down”. Mountaineers, as they climb mountains, sing a very beautiful song whose words go like this: “in the art of climbing, it is not important that you do not fall down, but that you do not stay down”. If you are weak, if you fall, look up a little for there is Jesus’ hand extended to you as he says: “Rise up, come with me”. “And what if I fall again?” Rise again. “And what if I fall yet again?” Rise yet again. Peter once asked the Lord: “Lord, how many times?” And the reply came: “seventy times seven”. The hand of Jesus is always extended, ready to lift us up again when we fall. Do you understand? [Yes!] In the Gospel, we heard how Jesus, on his way to Jerusalem, stopped at a home – the home of Martha, Mary and Lazarus – and was welcomed. He stopped, went in and spent time with them. The two women welcomed him because they knew he was open and attentive. Our many jobs and responsibilities can make us a bit like Martha: busy, scattered, constantly running from place to place… but we can also be like Mary: whenever we see a beautiful landscape, or look at a video from a friend on our mobile phone, we can stop and think, stop and listen… In these days, Jesus wants to stop and enter our home: your home, my home, enter into our hearts; Jesus will look at us hurrying about with all our concerns, as he did with Martha… and he will wait for us to listen to him, like Mary, to make space for him amid the bustle. May these be days given over to Jesus and to listening to one another. May they help us welcome Jesus in all those with whom we share our homes, our neighbourhoods, our groups and our schools. Whoever welcomes Jesus, learns to love as Jesus does. So he asks us if we want a full life. And in his name, I ask you: do you want a full life? Start right this moment by letting yourself be open and attentive!

Because happiness is sown and blossoms in mercy. That is his answer, his offer, his challenge, his adventure: mercy. Mercy always has a youthful face. Like that of Mary of Bethany, who sat as a disciple at the feet of Jesus and joyfully listened to his words, since she knew that there she would find peace. Like that of Mary of Nazareth, whose daring “Yes” launched her on the adventure of mercy. All generations would call her blessed; to all of us she is the “Mother of Mercy”. Let us call upon her together: Mary, Mother of Mercy. All of us: Mary, Mother of Mercy. All together, let us ask the Lord, each repeating in the silence of his or her heart: “Lord, launch us on the adventure of mercy! Launch us on the adventure of building bridges and tearing down walls, be they barriers or barbed wire. Launch us on the adventure of helping the poor, those who feel lonely and abandoned, or no longer find meaning in their lives. Launch us on the journey of accompanying those who do not know you, and telling them carefully and respectfully your Name, the reason for our faith. Send us, like Mary of Bethany, to listen attentively to those we do not understand, those of other cultures and peoples, even those we are afraid of because we consider them a threat. Make us attentive to our elders, to our grandparents, as Mary of Nazareth was to Elizabeth, in order to learn from their wisdom. I ask you: do you speak to your grandparents? [Yes!] That is good! Seek your grandparents, they have the wisdom of life and can tell you things that will stir your hearts. Here we are, Lord! Send us to share your merciful love. We want to welcome you in our midst during this World Youth Day. We want to affirm that our lives are fulfilled when they are shaped by mercy, that this is the better part, the sweetest part, and that it will never be taken from us.


03/11/2016 09:00:00



03/10/2016 APOSTOLIC JOURNEY OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS TO POLAND ON THE OCCASION OF THE XXXI WORLD YOUTH DAY (27-31 JULY 2016)

03/10/2016 Apostolic Journey to Poland

03/11/2016 APOSTOLIC JOURNEY OF HIS HOLINESS POPE FRANCIS TO POLAND ON THE OCCASION OF THE XXXI WORLD YOUTH DAY (27-31 JULY 2016)

03/04/2015 Community of the Lamb

03/01/2016 Holy Mass with bishops, clergy and of Pennsylvania. 26 september 2015. Apostolic Journey of his Pope Francis to Cuba, to the United States of America (18-28 Setember 2015)