Young people from Chiavari offer "pesto" to Pope Francis 05/09/2017 © L'Osservatore Romano

Young people offer "pesto" to Pope Francis © L'Osservatore Romano

Ahead of Synod, Pope to Meet & Pray With 70,000 Young People in Circus Maximus

Event to Take Place Saturday Evening, Along With Mass Sunday Morning

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Ahead of Synod, Pope Francis is to meet, chat and pray with 70,000 young people in Rome’s Circus Maximus.
According to the Italian Bishops’ Conference’s (the CEI’s) Office for Social Communications, the Saturday Aug. 11, 2018 encounter at Rome’s Circus Maximus will be kicked off with a Q & A and followed by music and entertainment.
On behalf of young Italians, Elena, 30, will give a greeting to the Holy Father, in which the gift – a surprise – that they intend to deliver to him at the end of the greeting will also be described.
Afterward, the dialogue between Francis and the young people will begin, consisting of three questions posed to the Pope, to which he will respond.
The first question will be asked by two young people–Letizia, 23, and Lucamatteo, 21–who will ask about building one’s unique identity and dreams.
Martina, 24, will ask the second question on the theme of discernment in life and on the idea of ​​commitment and responsibility towards the world.
The third question will be asked by Dario, a 27-year-old nurse who deals with palliative care, and will cover the topic of faith and the search for meaning.
After the Pope’s third intervention, a young woman who lost the use of her legs, Nicoletta Tinti, will be introduced, and she herself will perform. The Pope will greet her and at this point the Prayer Vigil will begin.
After the Q & A and prayer, the Pope will leave and the evening’s celebrations will continue from 9:30 – 11:30 p.m. with various musicians, bands and entertainment.
The next morning, the young people will participate in the Sunday morning Mass in St. Peter’s Square. The Eucharistic Concelebration will be presided by Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti, the president of the Italian Bishops’ Conference.
In an exclusive interview, Zenit learned the beautiful conversion story of Francesco Lorenzi, rock singer of the band ‘The Sun’ –who will be performing Saturday evening–and how now Christ and their faith are at the heart of their lives and work. Read it clicking below:

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Deborah Castellano Lubov

Deborah Castellano Lubov is Senior Vatican & Rome Correspondent for ZENIT; author of 'The Other Francis' ('L'Altro Francesco') featuring interviews with those closest to the Pope and preface by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin (currently published in 5 languages); Deborah is also NBC & MSNBC Vatican Analyst. She often covers the Pope's travels abroad, often from the Papal Flight (including for historic trips such as to Abu Dhabi and Japan & Thailand), and has also asked him questions on the return-flight press conference on behalf of the English-speaking press present. Lubov has done much TV & radio commentary, including for NBC, Sky, EWTN, BBC, Vatican Radio, AP, Reuters and more. She also has contributed to various books on the Pope and has written for various Catholic publications. For 'The Other Francis': or

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