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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis urges young people to not be afraid of taking risks and to be a team

Young people from Nossa Senhora Youth Teams greeted Pope Francis for an audience in the Apostolic Palace with cheers and chants.

During the meeting, the Pope focused on the three words that make up the name of the youth group: team, Our Lady, and youth. He spoke of the importance of being a part of a team.

You experience being a team, a group. This is a gift. It is not to be taken for granted! To be part of a community, a family of families that conveys a lived faith is a great gift! No one can say, "I save myself." No.

Pope Francis reminded the group that being part of a community is essential in taking risks and overcoming the challenges of life. 

Do not be afraid to open up, to take risks; and do not be afraid of others. It is true that there is bullying, abuse, lies, betrayals, but, believe me, the problem is not defending myself from others; my concern will have to be defending the victims.

In this virtual age and the consequent loneliness into which many of your peers fall, you have chosen to grow as a team, as a group. Go ahead, build bridges, play as a team! Get it? As a team.

To help them on their journey, the Pope encouraged the group to foster relationships with their grandparents as a source of strength and wisdom.

The future belongs to young people. Beware, however! Young people with two qualities: young people with wings and with roots. With wings to fly and roots to stand on the ground. Wings to fly, to dream, to create; and roots to receive from the elders the wisdom they offer you.

Pope Francis ended the meeting by blessing the group in Latin. 

The Nossa Senhora Youth Teams is a youth group founded in 1976 to connect young people who share a desire to grow in their spiritual lives together.