Monday, July 29, 2013

"God calls you to make definitive choices"

While World Youth Day is fresh in my memory, there is one other speech I was able to watch live on television that I found significant and full of meaning: Pope Francis' address to the 15,000 WYD volunteers who had been working on WYD in Rio for the past two year, an event that happened right after his address to the coordinating committee of CELAM. In light of my previous post note what he said to these dedicated young people: "The service you have given during these days brings to mind the mission of Saint John the Baptist, who prepared the way for Jesus. Every one of you, each in his or her own way, was a means enabling thousands of young people to “prepare the way” to meet Jesus. And this is the most beautiful service we can give as missionary disciples."

Below is the heart of his message of gratitude to these young women and men:
God calls you to make definitive choices, and he has a plan for each of you: to discover that plan and to respond to your vocation is to move toward personal fulfillment. God calls each of us to be holy, to live his life, but he has a particular path for each one of us. Some are called to holiness through family life in the sacrament of Marriage. Today, there are those who say that marriage is out of fashion; in a culture of relativism and the ephemeral, many preach the importance of “enjoying” the moment. They say that it is not worth making a life-long commitment, making a definitive decision, “for ever”, because we do not know what tomorrow will bring. I ask you, instead, to be revolutionaries, to swim against the tide; yes, I am asking you to rebel against this culture that sees everything as temporary and that ultimately believes that you are incapable of responsibility, that you are incapable of true love. I have confidence in you and I pray for you. Have the courage “to swim against the tide”. Have the courage to be happy.



The Lord calls some to be priests, to give themselves to him more fully, so as to love all people with the heart of the Good Shepherd. Some he calls to the service of others in the religious life: devoting themselves in monasteries to praying for the good of the world, and in various areas of the apostolate, giving of themselves for the sake of all, especially those most in need. I will never forget that day, 21 September – I was 17 years old – when, after stopping in the Church of San José de Floresto [to] go to confession, I first heard God calling me. Do not be afraid of what God asks of you! It is worth saying “yes” to God. In him we find joy!
Go be missionary disciples!

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