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ADDRESS OF POPE FRANCIS
TO THE YOUNG PEOPLE
FROM THE ITALIAN DIOCESE OF PIACENZA-BOBBIO

Basilica Vatican Basilica - Altar of the Chair
Wednesday,
28 August 2013

 

Thank you for this visit!

The bishop told me that I have done a great thing by coming here. But I did it for selfish reasons. Do you know why? Because I like being with you! And this is selfishness.

Why do I like being with young people? Because you have the promise of hope in your heart. You are bearers of hope. It is true that you live in the present but you are looking towards the future... you are architects of the future, artisans of the future. Now — and this is a joy for you — it is a beautiful thing to walk towards the future with dreams and with many beautiful things. And it’s also your responsibility. Become artisans of the future. When they say to me: “But, Father, what difficult times these are.... Look, we cannot do anything!”. What do you mean you cannot do anything? Then I explain that we can do a lot! And when a young person says to me: “These are difficult times Father, we cannot do anything!” Well! I send him or her to a psychiatrist! Because it’s true, it’s impossible to understand! It’s impossible to understand a young person, a boy, a girl, who does not want to do something great or bet on great ideals, great for the future. They will do what they can but the stakes are on great and beautiful things. And you are artisans of the future. Why? Firstly because inside you, you have three desires: the desire for beauty. You like beauty and when you make music, produce theatre, and paint — beautiful things — you are looking for beauty, you are searching for beauty. Now secondly: you are prophets of goodness. You like goodness and being good. And this goodness is contagious, it helps everyone else. And now third: you thirst for the truth. Seek the truth. “But, Father, I possess the truth!”. You are wrong because you cannot possess truth, we cannot carry it, we must encounter it. It is an encounter with the truth that is God, that we must search for. These three desires that you have in your heart, you must carry forward to the future and make the future beautiful with goodness and truth. Have you understood? This is a challenge; it is your challenge. But if you are lazy, if you are sad — a sad young person is not nice — if you are sad... well, this beauty will not be beauty, this goodness will not be goodness and this truth will be something else.... Think about this carefully: putting your stakes on the great ideals, the ideal of making a world of goodness, beauty and truth. You can do this, you have the power to do it. If you do not do it, it is because of laziness. I wanted to tell you this, this is what I wanted say to you.

I wanted to tell you this and say to you, have courage, go forward and make noise. Where there are young people so should there be noise. Then things settle down but the dream of a young person is to make noise forever. Go ahead! In life there will always be people who suggest that you slow down, blocking your path. Please go against the current. Be courageous boys and girls: go against the current. Some say to me: “No, not that but... just drink some alcohol, take a few drugs”. No! Go against the tide of this civilization that is harming itself. Do you understand this? Go against the current; and this means making noise, go ahead but with the values of beauty, goodness and truth. I wanted to tell you this. I wish you all well, do good work with joy in your heart: joyful young people! And therefore I would like to give you my blessing. But first let’s pray together to Our Lady who is the Mother of beauty, the Mother of goodness and the Mother of truth, that she may give us the grace of courage, because Our Lady was courageous, this woman she had courage! She was good, good, good! Let’s ask her, who is in heaven, who is our Mother, that she give us the courage to go forward, to go against the tide. All together, just as you are, let’s pray a Hail Mary to Our Lady.

After reciting the Hail Mary and imparting his blessing the Holy Father concluded.

I ask you to pray for me because this job is a “taxing” job, far from easy.... Pray for me!

 



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