Pope to Youth: God Calls You to Great Things Today

Explains Holy Spirit’s Gifts to Those to Be Confirmed

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VATICAN CITY, JUNE 4, 2012 (Zenit.org).- During his trip to Milan for the 7th World Meeting of Families, Benedict XVI reminded youth that God is calling them each day to something great. He exhorted them to have high ideals and to strive to be saints, saying sanctity is for everyone, also for the young.

The Pope said this Saturday in an address to young people who are about to receive the sacrament of confirmation, or have recently been confirmed.

His address centered on a brief explanation of each of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit.

«The Spirit’s gifts are wondrous realities that allow you to form yourselves as Christians, to live the Gospel and to be active members of the community,» he told them.

The Holy Father compared the whole of the Christian life to a journey, saying it is «like climbing a path that leads up a mountain – and so it is not always easy, but climbing a mountain is something beautiful – together with Jesus; with these precious gifts your friendship with him will become still more real and intimate.»

The Pontiff encouraged the youth to take advantage of Sunday Mass and the sacrament of confession, as well as daily prayer. Regarding confession, he said it is «a meeting with Jesus who forgives our sins and helps us to do the good; receiving this gift, beginning again, is a great gift in life, knowing that I am free, that I can start over, that all is forgiven.»


Benedict XVI also had some practical advice for the youth, «Do not be lazy, but hard working young people, especially in your studies, in view of the future: it is your daily duty and a great opportunity that you have to grow and to prepare the future. Be available and generous to others, overcoming temptations to put yourselves at the center because egoism is the enemy of true joy.»

«Let me tell you also that every day the Lord is calling you to great things, even here today,» he continued. «Be open to what he suggests and if he calls you to follow him on the path of the priesthood or the consecrated life, do not say no to him! It would be misguided laziness. Jesus will fill your heart for the rest of your life! […]

«Have high ideals: everyone can reach the heights, not just a few! Be saints! […] Sanctity is the normal path for Christians: it is not only for a few chosen ones, but is open to all. Naturally, [this can be done] with the light and the power of the Holy Spirit – which we will not lack if we raise up our hands and open our heart! – and with the help of Our Mother.»

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On ZENIT’s Web page:

Full text: www.zenit.org/article-34899?l=english

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