The pope, in an audience with 7,000 elderly people, reminded the world that it cannot look the other way in the face of their frailty. They educated the generation that today is leading society, and as grandparents they still have a lot to offer.
"How many grandparents take care of their grandchildren, handing them down with humbleness the experience of life, the spiritual and cultural values of a community and a people.”
He said that, in a world that only values appearances and strength, their experience cannot be taken lightly: they are proof that every age has its meaning.
"As people of the so-called 'third age', you, and I, because I am a part of your group, are called to work to develop the culture of life, proving that each period of our existence is God's gift, and this one has its own beauty and importance, even if it is marked by frailty.”
Pope Francis thanked the institutions that look after the elderly for their work and dedication, but he also challenged them. He said a lot more can still be done to protect the dignity of the elderly from those who marginalize them because they consider them unproductive.