Spanish Bishops Want to Make the Most of Pope's Visit

Urge Youth to Speak of Christ «Without Fear»

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MADRID, Spain, MAY 8, 2003 ( Spanish bishops are hoping to make the effects of John Paul II’s visit felt for a long time.

The bishops have written a note entitled «Revive Christian Roots,» in which they ask young people to speak «of Christ without fear or complexes,» and exhort them to «become apostles of young people themselves.»

«We nourish the hope that the good seed, which the Pope has sown with his word and the testimony of his life, will be generously fruitful among us. It is our responsibility to care for it, fertilize and water it as servants of the Lord’s estate,» affirms a statement of the Executive Committee of the Spanish episcopal conference.

«We still have the message engraved in our soul, full of faith and religious vigor, which he addressed to the very numerous young people who attended the unforgettable meeting at Cuatro Vientos, so full of emotions, of harmonious affection and thoughts, of paschal happiness and hope, of joy in the Spirit,» the committee writes.

The two events the Pope presided over, in the Cuatro Vientos air base with young people and the canonization Mass in Columbus Square, had a marked vocational character, and the Pope himself appealed to the faithful on numerous occasions to reflect if God was calling them to the priesthood or the consecrated life.

In their note the bishops also recall the Pope’s «invitation to follow Jesus Christ in the priesthood or the consecrated life, giving them the personal testimony of his 56 years of a dedicated life as a priest.»

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