DAILY CATHOLIC     WEDNESDAY     October 14, 1998     vol. 9, no. 201

NEWS & VIEWS
from a CATHOLIC perspective

To print out entire text of Today's issue, go to SECTION ONE and SECTION TWO

CARDINAL SODANO AND HOLY FATHER TELL AMERICAN YOUTH: "BE NOT AFRAID!"

          SANTIAGO, Chile (CWNews.com) - Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Angelo Sodano on Sunday closed the five-day long Gathering of Youth in the Americas by requesting young Catholics not to fear "either Christian ideals or the moral teaching of the Church."

          During the closing Mass at Santiago's horse racetrack, Cardinal Sodano told the nearly 500,000 youth from throughout North and South America, "We must not fear, but instead accept with courage the Christian ideals and live with generosity all the moral consequences of the Gospel." He added, "The time has arrived: this is the time to choose Christ and leave behind any moral relativism and the lack of an identity."

          The Mass, which followed a vigil that started on Saturday evening, was the second largest gathering in Chile's history, next to Pope John Paul II's visit in 1983. "Your task is to go to those youth who are living a moral relativism and the dramatic void that it produces," said Cardinal Sodano. "This void explains the different evils that attack today's youth: escapism, drugs, a distorted sexuality, and the lack of a personal motivation of life," he added. The cardinal also exhorted youth to follow Christ and discover "each one's own vocation, either priesthood, consecrated life, or marriage according to God's plans."

          During the vigil, a video with a message from the Pope to the participants was broadcast, in which the Holy Father expressed regret for not being physically present, but assured "my spiritual presence is with all of you." He also expressed his hope that Catholic youth will help in making Jesus "better known, better loved and better proclaimed in America."

          "Dear youth, let yourselves be guided by the Spirit of the Lord. Fear not! I know that in your heart exists a strong desire for service and solidarity," he said. "Let us work so that from one end of the Continent to the other many youth, following the example of so many American saints, may be willing to leave everything for the love of Christ and to follow him as missionaries of the Gospel! This is the day and the moment to give Christ a total 'yes' and build with him the new history of America," the Pope concluded.


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October 14, 1998       volume 9, no. 201
NEWS & VIEWS

DAILY CATHOLIC

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