Diverse Youths Invited to Pre-Synodal Meeting

The Blessed Mother

(ANS – Rome – March 1) – “From March 19 to 24, about 300 young people from all over the world will come to Rome for a preparatory meeting of the October Synod,” Pope Francis announced a few weeks ago. “There will also be young non-Catholics, non-Christians, non-believers, so as to listen to the broadest range of young people possible.”

Pope Francis himself is the promoter of this decision because “it will allow young people to express their expectations and desires, as well as their uncertainties and their concerns in the complex events of today’s world,” said the statement announcing the event.

The current situation represents a challenge for the organizers, since most young people will be chosen by episcopal conferences, the Eastern Churches, institutes of consecrated life, seminaries, associations, and ecclesial movements. Slots are reserved also for young people of other faiths or of none.

The names of participants are starting to emerge. Four young people were nominated in Brazil: David Rodrigues da Silva, Julena Martins Barros, Ariany de Oliveira Leite, and Matheus Vinicius de Oliveira Santos.

The path of Matheus, for example, is very significant because of the vocational journey he has carried out: after fruitful activity in his parish, he heard the call to the priesthood and is part of a new wave of future priests formed under the papacy of Pope Francis.

The Swiss bishops will send three young people: Jonas Feldmann, 25, a non-practicing Catholic; Sandro Bucher, 25, a journalist; and Medea Sarbach, 23, a student of theology and practicing Catholic.

The Vatican Dicastery for the Laity, the Family and Life is collaborating with the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops in this event to try to include representatives from the worlds of education, culture, work, sports, arts, volunteer service, and youth in general. Among the guests there will also be disabled young people, former drug addicts, and immigrants.

March 8, 2018 - 10:15am
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