Pope Francis’ Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation has been out for some days now. An internet search will surface many commentaries, as well as the link to the Vatican site. On any of those opinion pages, you can get the document boiled down to what the commentator thinks is important. You can get opinion here, too. But you won’t miss any word, sentence, or section. If you believe you see something of significance in the days and months ahead, latch onto it. Ponder it. Comment if you wish.
As always, the title derives from the first phrase of the Latin document: Christus Vivit is translated as “Christ lives” or “Christ is alive.” So we get Pope Francis’ first priority in his message to young people.
1. Christ is alive! He is our hope, and in a wonderful way he brings youth to our world, and everything he touches becomes young, new, full of life. The very first words, then, that I would like to say to every young Christian are these: Christ is alive and he wants you to be alive!
Second priority: the nearness of Christ.
2. He is in you, he is with you and he never abandons you. However far you may wander, he is always there, the Risen One. He calls you and he waits for you to return to him and start over again. When you feel you are growing old out of sorrow, resentment or fear, doubt or failure, he will always be there to restore your strength and your hope.
The Old Testament passage this brings to mind is the 139th Psalm. In the Gospels, Luke 15, of course. But that could just be the recent memory of hearing the faithful Father preached at Mass.
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