Pope Francis has delivered a harsh warning to young people that they must stay away from the consumerist sirens of life because the consequences can be “bad”.
The Pope called on young people in South America to create the “sanctity of home”.
“You have to make room for your family, your community. Only when you do that will you be able to find the strength to go out and do what you need to do,” he said.
Pope Francis was speaking to some 200,000 young people in Brazil’s northern city of Manaus.
“How can I be sure that my house is safe, and my family? This is the moment to find the most complete way to be with my family, my home. It is in this home that I live and grow up,” the Pope said.
He was speaking in the shadow of a colossal Amazonian rainforest during World Youth Day (WYD) celebrations.
The Pope was addressing young people from almost 100 countries gathered for the week-long event.
‘Committed to call’
The occasion has been characterised by very different visions of the future, marking a generational challenge and divide between some young people and the Church.
Last night, the thousands gathered for the first WYD Church vigil were asked to each identify 10 reasons for a Christian life.
But tonight the message from the Catholic Church has focussed on shared struggles, such as poverty, drug addiction and ethical issues of freedom and the needy.
The Gospel of the Sermon on the Mount was first preached by Jesus to his followers in Jerusalem in the town of Bethlehem.
The WYD theme this year is called Joci em Premio. It translates as ‘Advent is Engraved’.
Pope Francis said he was “completely committed to proclaim Jesus’ words to you’
The Pope told the young people: “The Gospel promises the recognition, the comfort, and the dignity of the lowly poor, the least of them.”
He also said he hoped that the message would show that “Jesus humbles his way to your feet in his own life”.
After the speech, many of the crowd spontaneously sang ‘Feliz Navidad’, or Happy Christmas.
The Pope continued by telling them that the text from the Sermon on the Mount was being repeated in the homily of the Angel Gabriel during the time of Jesus’ birth.
“Jesus asks you to see yourself first, to be reminded of a vision from your life. This is called ‘Holiness’ or ‘substance’, that is ‘J’ for Jesus. And that is part of the Christian mission,” he said.