Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Pope Francis highlights role of women, youth as messengers of faith and hope

April 3, 2013. ( After a few days of rest from a busy Holy Week schedule, Pope Francis returned to the public eye with an inclusive message of the Resurrection, tasking women to become the messengers of faith and hope.

Retelling the story of how a group of women were the first to find Christ's tomb empty, he highlighted the fact that instead of keeping the news of his Resurrection to themselves, they spread it.

“The first witnesses of the Resurrection are women. This is beautiful, and this is the mission of women, of mothers and grandmothers, to give witness to their children and grandchildren that Christ is Risen! Mothers go forward with this witness!”

During his speech, he referred to that message of hope and faith that comes from the Resurrection, as mankind's greatest treasure, which must be shared with others.

In addition to his outreach to women, he also called on the youth to do their part to spread faith and hope among their peers.

“I saw that there are many young people in the Square! Young boys and girls, to you I say bring forth this certainty the Lord is Alive and walks beside us on our life’s journey!”

A large number of the young people at the general audience came from Milan in northern Italy, along with their archbishop, Cardinal Dean Angelo Scola.

After a noisy greeting and chanting his name, Pope Francis gave an impromptu greeting to the group.

“How truly enthusiastic is this group from Milan.”

The audience, once again held at St. Peter's Square, also featured the performance of a women's choir from Florida.

Pope Francis once again spoke only in Italian, allowing other priests to give summaries and translate his greeting in seven other languages.

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