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Message of the Cardinal Secretary of State to the young participants in the gathering organized by the Taizé Community in Madrid, 28.12.2018

The following is the message sent by Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin to the young participants in the gathering organized by the Taizé Community, taking place in Madrid from today until 1 January 2019:


Message of the Cardinal Secretary of State

Dear young people,

You have come in large numbers from all over Europe and also from other continents, to experience in Madrid the 41st meeting organized and inspired by the Community of Taizé; you are invited not to forget hospitality. This is the theme that will guide your reflections, enlighten your prayer and that you will take up again at international meetings in Taizé, or in Beirut and Cape Town. From this perspective, Pope Francis wants to assure you of his great spiritual closeness. And, following the recent assembly of the Synod of Bishops in Rome on “Young people, the faith and vocational discernment”, he wishes to reiterate that with all the Church, he trusts in you. The Holy Father also thanks you for having chosen to participate in this gathering, to open the door of your heart to the Lord and His Word, to make visible and nurture a culture of encounter, accepting each other with respect for your differences.

The Pope encourages you “never [to] lose the enthusiasm of enjoying others’ company and friendship, as well as the pleasure of dreaming together, of walking together. Authentic Christians are not afraid to open themselves to others and share with them their own important spaces, making them spaces of fraternity” (Message for the 33rd World Youth Day, 25 May 2018). He thus invites you to make a place for the Lord in your life and to discover that, thanks to friendship with Jesus, it is possible to live a generous hospitality, to learn to be enriched by the differences of others and to nurture your own talents to become builders of bridges between churches, religions and peoples.

The Pope also asks the Holy Spirit to help you, young Protestants, Catholics and Orthodox, to grow in trust in God Who accepts you and loves you as you are, and Who calls you to welcome difference as a way of communion.

May the example of Mary, whose love is full of daring and self-giving, stimulate you to live concretely “that charity which urges us to love God above all else and above ourselves, to love those with whom we share our daily life” (ibid). With a heart full of hope, the Holy Father encourages you, with the grace of God, to welcome and support your older brothers and sisters in the faith, to use your talents, your energy and your strength to improve the world. and to ensure that every person can find his or her place in the great human family. He counts on you and your enthusiasm to take up the challenge of hospitality, especially by making you close to wounded humanity and those who are kept apart, rejected or excluded, small and poor!

In entrusting you to the Lord so that you may welcome Him, following the example of the Virgin Mary, and allowing Him to fill you with his joy, the Holy Father warmly gives his blessing to you, the young people participating in this meeting, to the Brothers of Taizé, and to all those who, in Madrid, open their doors and welcome you.

Cardinal Pietro Parolin

Secretary of State of His Holiness