Here is a translation of the Message sent, in the name of the Holy Father Francis, by the Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, to the participants in the 43rd European Meeting animated by the Community of Taize, being held online this year due to the pandemic, from December 27, 2020, to January 1, 2021, on the theme: “Hoping in Season and Out of Season.”
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To the participants in the 43rd European Meeting animated by the Community of Taize,
Dear Young People,
For over forty years, the Community of Taize has prepared a European Meeting every year in a big city of the Continent, and several generations of young people have taken part in it. Pope Francis is happy to join you, again this year, in thought and prayer. The health situation this time, not permitting such a gathering, you have given proof of creativity and imagination: although dispersed, you are linked in an unprecedented way thanks to the new means of communication. And, at the same time, you extend this meeting to young people of all the Continents. May these days, during which you pray together and support one another in faith and confidence, help you to hope “in season and out of season,” , as the theme of the message stresses, which will accompany you throughout the year 2021.
The very fact that you “meet,” even though you do so, exceptionally, in a virtual way, already puts you on the path of hope As the Holy Father said in his Encyclical Fratelli Tutti, “no one can face life in an isolated way. We have need of a community that supports us, which helps us and in which we help one another mutually to look ahead” (n. 8). Don’t be one of those that sow despair and arouse constant mistrust, this would be to neutralize the strength of the hope that the Spirit of the Risen Christ offers us. On the contrary, let yourselves be inhabited by this hope, it will give you the courage to follow Christ and to work together with and for the most destitute, in particular those that find it hard to face the difficulties of the present time. “Hope is audacious, it is able to look beyond personal comfort, little securities and compensations that shrink the horizon, to open oneself to great ideals that make life more beautiful and more dignified. Let us walk in hope!” (Fratelli Tutti, n. 55). Throughout this year, may you be able to continue to develop a culture of encounter and of fraternity, and to walk together towards this horizon of hope revealed by Christ’s Resurrection.
The Holy Father blesses each one of you, dear young people; he also blesses the Brothers of the Community of Taize, as well as your families and all those around the world taking part with you in this international meeting.
Cardinal Pietro Parolin
Secretary of State of His Holiness[Original text: French] [ZENIT’s translation by Virginia M. Forrester]