Pope Francis Asks "Do you make room for Jesus in your day...Does Jesus enter there? Do not be afraid to devote time to him in prayer..." FULL TEXT
ADDRESS OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS
TO THE CHILDREN OF ITALIAN CATHOLIC ACTION
Sala Clementina - Saturday, December 18, 2021
Dear boys and girls, welcome!
For me it is a joy to meet you on this Christmas date, and above all this [refers to a child] is courageous, he will make a fortune in life! Let him go, leave him alone ... I like it. Let's look: he has initiative, he has courage, he is someone who is looking for unknown things. So you, boys and girls, must be: boldly go forward!
With you are the National President of the Italian Catholic Action, prof. Giuseppe Notarstefano, the Assistant General, Mons. Gualtiero Sigismondi, together with the national leaders and some educators. I warmly greet them and through them I thank the many people who are generously committed to your formation by dedicating time and resources to the Association.
Your journey of faith this year is expressed by the slogan Made to measure for you , inspired by tailoring .I like this theme, which makes you think of tailor-made clothes, with accessories suitable for various people. It is beautiful because each of us is a unique person. No two are alike, no: one, unique! We are not photocopies, we are all original! And the bad thing is when we want to imitate others and do the things that people do, other people, and from originals we will become photocopies. This is bad. Everyone must defend their originality. Blessed Carlo Acutis, your contemporary, often repeated it. And in fact it is important that everyone wears the "dress" of their own originality, of their own personality, every day with joy. Think, in history there is no one and there will never be anyone equal to you, to you, to you ... We are all different. Each is a unique and unrepeatable beauty. And when someone does bad things, each is a unique, unrepeatable ugliness. Everyone is original in both good and bad!
This is how Jesus sees you, he loves you as you are, even if someone does not consider you and may think that you count for little. Jesus, who came into the world as a child, believes in a world fit for children , fit for everyone. He made us understand this by being born in Bethlehem. But even today he gets close to the children of every country and every people, and he does it every day. It is God's style, which is described in three words: closeness, compassion and tenderness. This is God's style, not another.
Dear friends, in the face of Jesus who makes himself our neighbor, we too learn to make ourselves "neighbors"; close to others: close to family members, friends, peers, the needy. You can always do something for others without waiting for others to do something for us. One can always be a missionary of the Gospel, and be one everywhere, starting from the environments in which one lives: in the family, at school, in the parish, in places of sport and entertainment. But to do this, to take on the style of Jesus, to be his witnesses, we must be with him, make room for him in our day. And I ask each of you, boys and girls: do you make room for Jesus in your day, in your work, in your study, in your rest, in your sport? Does Jesus enter there? Do not be afraid to devote time to him in prayer, that is, to talk to him - with Jesus - about your friends, to ask him for help in difficulties, to tell him when you are happy and when you are sad. And Jesus will make you grow into that nobility that a person has when he takes his own measure upon himself.
Today I received the biography of a boy who gave his life - 20 years - he gave his life for his homeland: Gino Pistoni. His cause for beatification is ongoing. And he offered his life with his blood, written with his blood… And immediately I thought of you: I will take him to the audience to talk to them about this boy. May your life ... May each of you give life, but well, with everything: express himself as he expressed himself with blood, express himself with everything he has.
Jesus gives the heart full joy, because only He is capable of making life's adventure ever new. He never forgets about you; he is always ready to encourage you and never stops believing in you. We are the ones who forget about him: this always happens ... He gives you energy, gives you courage every time you go to meet him at Mass and looks at you with joy especially when you make gestures of sharing and solidarity towards others, when you are capable of being close to those who are alone, without friends, in difficulty; close to those who suffer, and unfortunately there are many of your peers who suffer! Think of them, think of these guys, whom you don't know, but there are many who suffer. Carry them in your heart to speak to Jesus. Courage! Courage on your life journey. Jesus is counting on you!
I thank you and wish you a happy and holy Christmas. Thank you! Merry Christmas to your families and to all Catholic Action. I cordially bless you and ask you to pray for me.
FULL TEXT Source: Vatican.va - Image Screenshot - Translation from Italian