Skip to comments.Pope Francis answers questions of young people in Assisi
Posted on 10/04/2013 3:54:12 PM PDT by NYer
(Vatican Radio) At the conclusion of his one day visit to Assisi on Friday, Pope Francis met with over 20.000 enthusiastic young people gathered in front of the Basilica of St Mary of the Angels, answering four questions about faith, family, vocations and their fears for the future.
Responding to the first question from a young couple with their new baby, the Pope said it takes courage to form a family, to build solid and lasting relationships in our ephemeral and superficial environment. But the Holy Spirit, he said, has inspired many new initiatives within the Church for young people, for couples in crisis, or for parents and children in difficult situations.
Marriage and the family, the Pope stressed, is a real vocation, but there are also others who are called to the vocation of celibacy and commitment to the Kingdom of God. How can we recognise this calling, a young man and woman had asked him? By listening to the voice of God, he replied, in silence, in prayer, in the Sacraments. Having a living relationship with Our Lord, he said, is like keeping an open window so that we can hear God calling us and telling us what he wants us to do. Every calling is different, he went on, but each one begins with an encounter with God that touches our hearts and involves every part of our being.
Responding to the other two questions about loss of hope in the future and how to participate in this Year of Faith, Pope Francis urged the young people to listen to the voice of St Francis calling them to be servants of the Gospel of Christ. This message of salvation, he said, must not be mere empty words ,but must help us to transform the world through the witness of our life and faith.
Pope Francis prays in front of the tomb of Saint Francis during his pastoral visit in Assisi October 4, 2013. Pope Francis visits Assisi, the Italian town that was home to his namesake St. Francis of Assisi. Pope Francis took his name from the saint who is revered around the world as a symbol of austerity, simplicity, concern for the poor and a love of the environment. REUTERS/Gian Matteo Crocchioni/Pool
Pope Francis prays during a visit to St. Chiara Basilica in Assisi October 4, 2013. Pope Francis visited Assisi, the Italian town that is home to his namesake St. Francis of Assisi. Pope Francis took his name from the saint who is revered around the world as a symbol of austerity, simplicity, concern for the poor and a love of the environment. REUTERS/Giampiero Sposito
God bless and keep him and everyone here.
Love it! I visited Assisi about 5 years ago, and I was really expecting something horribly commercial and synthetic.
When I went into the Basilica to see the Portiuncula, I was completely blown away. It’s an incredibly beautiful site, this little chapel in the midst of a vast church, and there were pilgrims weeping all around me. They hear confessions non-stop, in many languages, and judging by the lines, I thought that this was going to be a life-transforming experience for many.
God bless you and keep you, dearest livius. Thank you so much for telling me about your wonderful experience. I would love to travel to Assissi!
You absolutely must go! I almost didn’t go because I thought it would be just commercial and horrible, and two friends of mine who went to Italy last month almost didn’t go for the same reason. But I talked them into going and they thought it was the high point of their trip, even though they were only there overnight.
Stay a little longer if you can, because in addition to being holy, it’s beautiful!
Sigh. I really want to go to Assisi, too. My mother brought me ceramic plaque of St. Francis when she went there; I’ve glued it back together a couple of times!
It’s certainly worth the trip! You can really sense the holiness of the site, much more so than at other shrines that I have visited.
When I went into the Basilica to see the Portiuncula, I was completely blown away. Its an incredibly beautiful site, this little chapel in the midst of a vast church, and there were pilgrims weeping all around me. They hear confessions non-stop, in many languages, and judging by the lines, I thought that this was going to be a life-transforming experience for many.
Like you, livius, when I first entered the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli, there were oversized paintings and larger than life statues. It seemed so totally unlike the simplicity of St. Francis. But then I turned my head and saw this ...
Checking the guidebook, I read through the history of how this small church was given to Francis by by the Abbot of St. Benedict of Monte Subasio, on condition of making it the mother house of his religious family. It was in bad condition, lying abandoned in a wood of oak trees. He restored it with his own hands. When he was dying, Francis asked the brothers to carry his litter down to the Porziuncola. He placed his hand on the exterior wall and told the brothers that this church was very holy ... that our Lord and His blessed mother watched over it and that whoever entered with a sincere heart would have their prayer answered. It was in the Porziuncola that I submitted my final plea for a child. Nine months later, the response came through my parish of St. Francis of Assisi in NY and the adoption of a child born out of wedlock.