Pope prays for young people, their diligence and courage

IMAGE: CNS photo/Paul Haring

By Cindy Wooden

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — As he often does with a group made up of people of
different faiths or no faith, Pope Francis gave young people in Palermo a
special blessing, but not a ritual one.

After the pope’s meeting with teenagers and young adults
Sept. 15, some Catholics on Twitter expressed outrage that there was no formal
apostolic blessing in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Instead, the pope asked God to look upon the thousands of
young people gathered with him in Palermo’s Piazza Politeama.

After giving his formal speech, Pope Francis apologized to
the young people for delivering it while seated when they were all standing.
But, he said, “my ankles are really sore.”

“Now I would like to give you a blessing, but I know
that among you there are young Catholics, Christians, members of other
religions and a few agnostics,” he said. “For this reason, I will
give everyone a blessing, and I will ask God to bless the seed of restlessness
that is in your heart.”

The pope clasped his hands, bowed his head and prayed:
“Lord, Lord God, look upon these young people. You know each one of them.
You know what they think. You know that they want to go forward, to make a
better world.

“Lord, make them seekers of goodness and happiness.
Make them diligent in their journey and in their encounters with others. Make
them bold in serving; make them humble in seeking their roots and nurturing
them to bear fruit, to have an identity, to belong. May the Lord, the Lord God,
accompany all these young people on their journey and bless each one.

– – –

Copyright © 2018 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. www.catholicnews.com. All rights reserved. Republishing or redistributing of CNS content, including by framing or similar means without prior permission, is prohibited. You may link to stories on our public site. This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. To request permission for republishing or redistributing of CNS content, please contact permissions at cns@catholicnews.com.

Original Article