Summer, WYD and Pope Francis

Closing Mass of the WYD on Copacabana Beach

You may think  what Summer, World Youth Day and Pope Francis have in common to be together in this post. Well, I can assure you  that they have a lot in common actually. Let us start with Summer. It   is a great time, especially for those who live in North America, as we here  in Canada. It lasts for  a short period of time, when we can enjoy the good weather, the company of our friends in outdoor activities such as camps, picnics and  street festivals, that are all very important if you consider that we live in a really cold place, and that Summer only goes for 3 months, it is a short time but pretty  intense and when you blink it is gone. At  Summer time  everyone has  many plans and expectations and  as in World Youth Day as well (everyone who already participated  to one knows that !) You go with a lot of dreams and desires, want to see the Pope, the people, expecting to get together with other cultures and especially with the youth around the world that endure the same challenges as you and once you are there you gain a great, an awesome experience with Christ and with the Church that is alive and young, and then you realize: the Church has a place for me! I belong to the Church!

WYD is short and intense, it is a great opportunity to see new things, to go beyond our limits, to touch another reality, to grow and to defy the boundaries of our nowadays mentality and is in that point that enters Pope Francis. He made actually a revolution, maybe not that in the   World’s conception ,but really a revolution in our hearts, a revolution of Love.

Pope Francis brought the newness and freshness of the Gospel to our everyday life and this is an experience that we should  embrace with all our being, otherwise will  become like  Summer that is  gone in a blink of our eyes leaving good memories but that  is all. His words for the Youth and  also for the whole Church, during the WYD in Rio, his testimony , his attitude expressed to each person , reveals  that Love is real and actual, that Christ is alive in the Church and in us, that we are Christ´s arms, hands and voice and the most important, he shows us  that doesn´t matter  where we go   or what we do, we will take Him with us and the World will see Him through us.

So, here we go, World, an army of  people that experienced God´s love and will use all means to offer it for all those we will meet in the way.

 Paula Mainardi

Missionary of Shalom Catholic Community


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