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Pope presides at Palm Sunday services, World Youth Day observances

April 10, 2017

Pope Francis presided at Palm Sunday services on April 9, leading the traditional procession in St. Peter’s Square and celebrating Mass.

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In his homily the Pope remarked that the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem is a “bittersweet” moment, and the Gospel, while recalling that triumphal entry, also looks forward to the Passion. “So as we joyfully acclaim our King, let us also think of the sufferings that he will have to endure in this week,” the Pope said.

“Jesus never promised honor and succes,” the Pope continued. He urged the faithful to “ask for the patience to carry our own crosses.”

During the Sunday ceremony, the World Youth Day cross was transferred from the organizers of the last international celebration, in Krakow, to those planning the next international meeting, in Panama in 2019. On Saturday evening, Pope Francis had participated in a prayer vigil for young people, organized by the Synod of Bishops and the dicastery for Laity, Family, and Life. In his remarks the Pope reminded the young people that preparation for World Youth Day will be running alongside the preparation for the next meeting of the Synod of Bishops, which will be devoted to “Young Popele, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment.”

“In the Synod, the entire Church wants to listen to young people,” the Pope said. He said that the Church and the world “need young people who are neither retired nor couch potatoes!”

Too often, young people are not taken into account in world affairs, the Pope continued. “They don’t have work, they don’t have an ideal to pursue, they lack education and they lack intergation. So many young people have to flee, to migrate to other lands... We cannot tolerate this!”


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