Pope Francis on August 11, 2018, joined 70,000 Italian youth in Rome’s Circus Maximus. The gathering included questions from the young people, answers from the Holy Father, and musical entertainment.
The 70,000 young people hail from various dioceses of Italy, in Rome for weekend encounters with the Pope. The events culminate a weeklong walking pilgrimage that some 40,000 young people began on August 3 through the territories of their dioceses, called “Per Mille Strade”, the Italian for “Across Thousand Roads”.
A featured part of the entertainment came from “The Sun”, considered the most fashionable rock band of Catholic inspiration today, in Italy and beyond. “We are atypical rockers, but fortunately we are! Because our lives are full of joy, love, and fullness!” Francesco Lorenzi says, speaking for him and his bandmates. He does not hide that giving testimony to one’s faith is penalizing in the music business: “We will not become U2, but God has freed our souls and gives us so much joy through our work.”
Pope Francis tends to draw a positive reaction from young people. Just 10 days ago, on July 31, 2018, he welcomed to St. Peter’s Square a joyful and sometimes noisy group of some 60,000 youth age 13-23, visiting from 18 nations.
They came to Rome for the 12th International Pilgrimage of Altar Boys and Girls, running from July 28 – August 4. The event is sponsored by Coetus Internationalis Ministrantium (C.I.M.).