On Sunday, during a Eucharistic celebration presided over at Avila, Spain, by Cardinal Ricardo Blazquez Perez, and some thirty Bishops and numerous priests, and attended by some 6,000 European young people, the Secretary of the Spanish Bishop’s Conference, Father Gil Tamayo, read this Message of Pope Francis, signed by the Cardinal Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin:

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Lord Cardinal Ricardo Blazquez Perez

Archbishop of Valladolid

President of the Spanish Episcopal Conference

Pope Francis cordially greets the organizers and participants in the European Youth Meeting, being held in Avila, to grow, reflect and give witness of their faith and their love of the Church, following the example and the teaching of Saint Teresa of Jesus, on the 5th centenary of her birth.

Saint Teresa’s expression, ”in hard times, strong friends of God,” has special resonance when it refers to young people and their yearning for truth, goodness and beauty. Therefore, the Holy Father encourages all not to conform themselves to a mediocre life without aspirations, and to force themselves instead to grow in a profound life of friendship with Christ, to become every day more aware of the immense gift received in Baptism and in Confirmation, which spurs us to love Christ in our brothers.

His Holiness, in reminding you of the need to grow always in love for the Church and for brothers, asks you to pray for him and, at the same time, entrusts you with affection to the protection of the Virgin Mary, and he imparts from his heart the requested Apostolic Blessing.


Cardinal Pietro Parolin

Secretary of State of His Holiness

[Translation by ZENIT]