July 8, 2013 (Romereports.com) The four-day pilgrimage of over 6,000 seminarians and novices culminated with a special Mass celebrated by Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Basilica. The Pope addressed those on a vocational journey by stressing the fact that their young age is a great treasure for their mission within the Church.
“You represent the Church’s youth! If the Church is the Bride of Christ, you in a certain sense represent the moment of betrothal, the Spring of vocation, the season of discovery, assessment, formation. And it is a very beautiful season, in which foundations are laid for the future. Thank you for coming!”
Pope Francis said that the true goal of consecrated people must be that of announcing joy and serenity to the world. This, the Pope said, should be a natural consequence when someone has experienced God’s consolation and tenderness.
“Sometimes I’ve seen consecrated people who are afraid of God’s consolation. Poor men, poor women, they are consumed with sorrow, because they fear God’s tenderness. But don’t be afraid! Don’t be afraid, the Lord is the Lord of consolation, the Lord of tenderness. God is our Father and He says he will behave with us like a mother with her child, with tenderness. Never be afraid of God’s consolation!”
At the end of his homily, the Pope also stressed the importance of poverty, since Jesus, the Pope said, sent his disciples to the world with no “purse, no bag, no sandals.” Finally, Pope Francis entrusted the novices and seminarians to the intercession of Our Lady.