On Sunday, Pope Francis recalled the joy of last week’s World Youth Day Mass in Rio de Janeiro during yesterday’s Angelus address. Thousands gathered in St. Peter’s Square to listen to the Holy Father’s address which was delivered from the window of the Apostolic Palace.
The Holy Father told the pilgrims present that the World Youth Day in general is not a singular moment that end, but a continuous journey which began on the first WYD in 1985.
“Let us always remember: the youth do not follow the Pope, they follow Jesus Christ, carrying his cross. And the Pope leads them and accompanies them on this journey of faith and hope,” the Pope said.
“So, I thank all the young people who participated, some of whom also made sacrifices to do so. And I thank the Lord too for the meetings I had with the Pastors and people of that great country that is Brazil, as well as with the authorities and volunteers. May the Lord repay all those who worked for this great feast of faith.”
The Holy Father also thanked the people of Brazil, regarding them as a great people with “a big heart.” Regarding the youth who attended, Pope Francis expressed his hope that they would take the experience of the event to their daily lives.
“Young people are especially sensitive to the lack of meaning and values that surrounds them. And unfortunately they pay the consequences,” the Pope said. “But meeting with the living Jesus in his great family that is the Church fills the heart with joy because it fills us with true life, with a profound good, that does not pass or go bad: we saw it in the faces of the kids in Rio.”
Reflecting on the Sunday Gospel, the Pope stated that the Word reminds us all of “the absurdity of basing our happiness on having, which he said was relevant in today’s society that “deceives young people with consumerism.”
True wealth, he emphasized, is the loved of God that is shared with one another. “Whoever has experience of this love does not fear death and receives peace of heart,” the Pope said before entrusting this intention to the Blessed Mother.