Francis Encourages Taizé Youth

Says Lack of Christian Unity Is ‘Huge Obstacle’ to Church’s Mission

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Pope Francis issued a message through his Secretary of State, Archbishop Pietro Parolin, to the 25,000 young adults participating at the 36th annual European encounter of the Taizé community. The meeting began Saturday and this year is being held in Strasbourg, France. 

In the message, Archbishop Parolin spoke of the closeness the Pope feels to the young adults gathered for the meeting. He spoke of the region as “a land lacerated by wars, which had innumerable victims, but a land that also brings great hope, that of the building of the European family”.

“Europe, which has lived and continues to live difficult moments, needs your commitment, your faith, your courage,” he wrote.

Addressing the theme of the gathering—“Seek the visible communion of all those who love Christ”—he recognized that the young adults “are aware that the division among Christians constitutes an huge obstacle for the realization of the mission that was entrusted to the Church” and that the credibility of the Christian message would be much greater if Christians could overcome their divisions. 

“The Pope shares with you the conviction that we can learn many things from each other, for the realities that unite us are numerous,” he continued. “The Pope is counting on you so that through your faith and witness, the Gospel spirit of peace and reconciliation shines among your peers.” 

He then conveyed that the Pope gives the young people, the Taizé brothers, the pastors and all of the hosts of the meeting his benediction. 

Text from page 
of the Vatican Radio website 

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