Francis invites youths to carry 'spiritual breath of fresh air' back to home countries
Pope Francis waves as he arrives to conduct the final Mass at Field of Mercy on July 31, in Brzegi near the Polish city of Krakow as part of the World Youth Day. (Photo by AFP)
Take risks and do not let life's obstacles get in the way of encountering the true joy and life that Jesus can give, Pope Francis told more than 1 million young people.
"Don't be afraid to say 'yes' to him with all your heart, to respond generously and to follow him," the pope told pilgrims at the closing Mass July 31 for World Youth Day. "Don't let your soul grow numb, but aim for the goal of a beautiful love which also demands sacrifice."
"When it comes to Jesus, we cannot sit around waiting with arms folded; he offers us life. We can't respond by thinking about it or 'texting' a few words," he told the young people, thousands of whom had spent the night camping at an area dubbed the Field of Mercy.
Pope Francis encouraged the young men and women to not be ashamed in bringing "everything to the Lord in confession, especially your weaknesses, your struggles and your sins."
"Don't be afraid to say 'yes' to him with all your heart, to respond generously and to follow him! Don't let your soul grow numb, but aim for the goal of a beautiful love which also demands sacrifice," the pope said.
Although the Mass brought the World Youth Day celebrations to an end, Pope Francis invited the youth to continue along the path that began with their pilgrimage to Krakow and bring the remembrance of God's love to others.
"Trust the memory of God: his memory is not a 'hard disk' that saves and archives all our data, but a tender heart full of compassion that rejoices in definitively erasing every trace of evil," the pope said.
Before concluding the Mass with the recitation of the Angelus prayer, the pope invited the youths to carry the "spiritual breath of fresh air" back to their countries and communities and "wherever God's providence leads you."
Source: Catholic News Service
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