“Why are you going to the WYD?” “Because I hope to meet Jesus,” answered a girl who came all the way to Cologne, together with hundreds of thousands of young people from all over the world. I think that she is not the only one who feels this urgent desire to meet Jesus! And it is also the motto of this WYD: look for Christ, find him and adore him.
The “World Youth Day” – this inspirational invention of our beloved Pope John Paul II – is a privileged occasion to meet the living Christ in his Church (…). To meet Jesus, adore him and then bring him wherever we go.
Dear youth, do you know that there is a secret so you will not lose this Jesus whom you have met during the WYD events, and who appeared to us as such a beautiful, dynamic and fascinating person?
The secret is this: we have to love! To love God and remain in Him, and be always in the light, we have to love the others!
You see, this is the experience I have acquired in more than 60 years, but it is also the experience of a whole population spread out over the globe, millions of men, women and children who have chosen love as their lifestyle! This is the secret for a happy, full, interesting and ever new life, one that is never boring but always full of surprises! Let me give you a small but great example: I found out recently that a group of young people in a refugee camp in Africa, where practically everything is lacking, wants to change their camp into a paradise through love and they have told me of really concrete experiences that are producing these results. So you see? It means that love overcomes all!
We could say numberless things about this love which Jesus taught us with his life, world, and saints. But just for today I would like to underline only two fundamental points:
We should love EVERYONE, without exceptions or favouritism– the way God loves us! –and this consists in loving our enemy, that nice and unpleasant person, your teacher, next door neighbour, the postman, and your colleague. To love ALL means also to love people who are far away, but who are present through the mass media, like the victims of the Tsunami in Southeast Asia, or those whom you helped with the Solidarity Fund. The second point is: we have to be THE FIRST to love. We usually love when we are loved, to respond to the love we receive. And if we don’t receive it? No, it is even better to take the initiative, be the first to start, giving a sign of friendship, forgiveness, and the will to start from the very beginning. Try to love in this manner, and you will experience immense freedom because you are the protagonists!
Dear youth, take courage! A life like this is worth the while, and you are not made to do things halfway. So give your heart to Him who knows how to fill it. God needs youth like this, inflamed, who cannot be hindered by their own problems, people who have burnt all in the fire of God’s love and who have influenced all to do the same. May Jesus whom you have met, be always with you! In true Love.
(Chiara Lubich, Cologne, 16 August 2005)
Source: Chiara Lubich Centre