The meeting with choirs from all over the world began with a lot of enthusiasm and music from the participants.
Thousands of people from faraway places, such as the Philippines and Canada, filled Paul VI Audience Hall to listen to the pope.
“Holy Father, for the past three days the Vatican has been invaded by these 7,000 young people, who with their songs and musical instruments show, in an evident and tangible way, the beauty of music.”
Pope Francis joked with them, reminding them that their presence did not go unnoticed in Rome. He warned them of the danger of becoming protagonists in liturgical celebrations.
“Do not fall into the temptation of a protagonism that humiliates the active participation of the people in prayer. Please don't be the 'prima donna.'”
The pope explained that it is important for people to participate during the songs in liturgical ceremonies. Singing allows them to participate actively in Mass and express their piety.
“That popular piety that knows how to pray creatively, that knows how to sing creatively. This popular piety which, as an Italian bishop said, is the 'immune system' of the Church. Singing allows this piety to be realized.”
Pope Francis advised them not to underestimate manifestations of popular piety such as processions for patron saints festivals. Above all, he stressed music along with the Eucharist. He said that it is an instrument for evangelization.