Pope at the inaugural Mass of the Synod: Young people will dream if we do

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'We offer them our warm welcome.'

Pope Francis' voice cracked with emotion as he recalled that at this Synod on young people, bishops from Mainland China are present for the very first time.

“Today, for the first time, we have also with us two bishops from Mainland China. We offer them our warm welcome: the communion of the entire Episcopate, with the Successor of Peter, is yet more visible thanks to their presence.”

On September 22, the Holy See announced the signing of an interim agreement with China. It is a difficult agreement signed after decades of negotiations. Yet everyone is not satisfied. For some sectors of the clandestine Church, it means siding with the persecutors.

However, the agreement allows for historical situations like this: that two bishops from Mainland China can participate in an official Vatican event in Rome.

The Synod on youth will test the ability of the bishops to unite generations and mentalities. Pope Francis asked the Synod Fathers two things. The first request is to let go of their selfishness to listen.

“This disposition protects us from the temptation of falling into moralistic or elitist positions, and protects us from the lure of abstract ideologies that never touch the realities of our people.”

The second request he asked for is creativity, dynamism and fleeing from 'it has always been done like this' mentalities to find solutions that help young people 'realign' with the Church.

Recalling passages from the Old Testament, he said that young people's ability to dream will depend to a large extent on their elders.

“Renew in us the capacity to dream and to hope. We know that our young people will be capable of prophesying and envisioning, to the extent that we adults and elderly can dream.”

For the occasion, the facade of St. Peter's Basilica has been decorated with two tapestries: one of St. Joseph and another of St. Michael the Archangel. The pope has specifically asked for the intercession of the archangel in October, to protect the Church from the attacks of the devil who tries to divide it.

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