For about 20 minutes, Pope Francis made his way along St. Peter's Square in the popemobile, greeting and blessing pilgrims along the way.
"This one is a newborn!”
The Pope also took the time to bless some photos that pilgrims stretched out as far as they could reach.
In his catechesis, Pope Francis talked about dating and setting a solid foundation for marriage. Love, he explained shouldn't be improvised or based on fading emotions.
"The freedom of giving oneself to another is a decision that requires a conscious harmony. It's not about a simple mutual attraction, an emotion, a moment or a phase. It's a journey.”
He was quite direct in addressing some of the challenges young couples face. From dating to premarital sex. He said that taking things lightly is a double edged sword.
"Those who want to have everything immediately, also fall before anything immediately, when facing the first challenge or fist opportunity. Dating is a time for couples to see if there is the will to care for something that cannot be bought, sold, betrayed or abandoned, no matter how appealing the offer is.”
When it comes to marriage prep courses, the Pope recognized that many engaged couples shy away from them. But then they are happy that they carried them out.
"The truth is, there they find the opportunity, oftentimes the only one, to reflect on their relationship beyond superficial terms. Yes, many of these couples have been together for a long time, even intimately. Some even live together, but they don't truly know one another.”
Before heading out, he asked the thousands of pilgrims out in the Square to pray a Hail Mary together for all the couples who are in the dating phase of their relationship. So they may recognize the beauty of the journey that can lead to the most important decision of their lives.