His Holiness Pope Francis’s address to the Youth in Manila on January 18, brings to light our charism and encourages us to continue living it out. Here are some excerpts.
"The great question for everybody is: “Why do children suffer?”. Why do children suffer? Only when our hearts can ask this question and weep, can we begin to understand. There is a worldly compassion which is completely useless. You said something about this. A compassion which, at most, makes us reach into our pocket and take out a coin. If Christ had that kind of compassion, he would have passed by, cured three or four people, and then returned to the Father. Only when Christ wept, and he was capable of weeping, did he understand our troubles. Dear young men and women, our world today needs weeping. The marginalized weep, those who are neglected weep, the scorned weep, but those of us who have relatively comfortable life, we don’t know how to weep. Certain realities of life are seen only with eyes that are cleansed by tears.
What is the most important lesson that you have to learn in life? It is learning how to love. This is the challenge which life sets before you today. Learning how to love.
True love is both loving and letting oneself be loved. It is harder to let ourselves be loved than it is to love. That is why it is so hard to achieve the perfect love of God, because we can love him but the important thing is to let ourselves be loved by him. True love is being open to that love which was there first and catches us by surprise.
The Gospel says that Jesus looked at that young man and loved him. Jesus says: “Only one thing is lacking”.
Only one thing is lacking. Become a beggar. That’s what is lacking; learning to beg from those to whom we give. This is not easy to understand. Learning to beg. Learning to receive from the humility of the people we help. Learning to be evangelized by the poor. The persons we help, the poor, the sick, orphans, have much to give us.
This is what can help all those people who are committed to trying to give to others: it is learning to stretch out our own hands from our poverty.