Setting out towards the next WYD 2019 which will take place in PANAMA, Pope Francis announced the themes for this year, for 2018 and for 2019. The theme of the next year in 2018, will be: “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God.” (Lc 1, 30). The main theme of the World Youth Days 2019 will be: “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” (Lc 1, 30)
Here are 13 keys coming from the message for the World Youth Day of next April on the theme: “The Mighty One has done great things for me”+ (Lc 1, 49).
+ Mary does not need a good sofa !
According to Luke’s Gospel, once Mary has received the message of the angel and said “yes” to the call to become the Mother of the Saviour, she sets out in haste to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who was in the sixth month of her pregnancy (cf. 1:36, 39). Mary is very young; what she was told is a great gift, but it also entails great challenges. The Lord assured her of his presence and support, yet many things remain obscure in her mind and heart. Yet Mary does not shut herself up at home or let herself be paralyzed by fear or pride. Mary is not the type that, to be comfortable, needs a good sofa where she can feel safe and sound. She is no couch potato!
+ To believe? A gift. One of the great gifts that the Virgin received was certainly that of faith. Belief in God is a priceless gift.
+ a revolutionary prayer…. the Magnificat. It is a revolutionary prayer, Mary’s one, the song of a faith-filled young woman conscious of her limits, yet confident in God’s mercy.
+ To live tremendous things. When God touches the heart of a young man or woman, they become capable of doing tremendous things.
+ What to do? Give your love. You may say to me: “But Father, I have my limits, I am a sinner, what can I do?” When the Lord calls us, he doesn’t stop at what we are or what we have done. On the contrary, at the very moment that he calls us, he is looking ahead to everything we can do, all the love we are capable of giving.
+ To make the world better! Like the young Mary, you can allow your life to become a means for making the world a better place. Jesus is calling you to leave your mark in life, your mark on history, both your own and that of so many others.
+ Mary… like you. Mary was little more than an adolescent, like many of you. Yet in the Magnificat, she echoes the praises of her people and their history. This shows us that being young does not mean being disconnected from the past. Like Mary, we belong to a people.
+ The pearl is born of a wound. Some of you, particularly those hurt by certain situations in life, might want to “reset” your own past, to claim the right to forget it all. The pearl is born of a wound in the oyster! Jesus, by his love, can heal our hearts and turn our lives into genuine pearls.
+ Things can change! It is a gift of God to see how many of you, with your questions, dreams and uncertainties, refuse to listen to those who say that things cannot change.
+ To spread wings and fly… Spread your wings and fly, but also realize that you need to rediscover your roots and to take up the torch from those who have gone before. To build a meaningful future, you need to know and appreciate the past (cf. Amoris Laetitia, 190, 193).
+ Look to… your grandparents. You, Young people have strength, while the elderly have memory and wisdom. As Mary did with Elizabeth, look to the elderly, to your grandparents. They will speak to you of things that can thrill your minds and fill your hearts.
+ Reality show. Don’t let yourselves be deceived!! People think it is better to live in “open” situations, going through life as if it were a reality show, without aim or purpose. Don’t let yourselves be deceived! God came to enlarge the horizons of our life in every direction.
+ You will not regret it! May you too cultivate a relationship of familiarity and friendship with Our Lady, entrusting to her your joys, your worries and your concerns. I assure you that you will not regret it!