A look at World Youth Day and the contribution of the youth of the Focolare Movement
Rio de Janeiro welcomes 2 million young people for the XXVIII edition of World Youth Day. But not only. It also welcomes Pope Francis, who on his first apostolic journey will meet with young people in Copacabana for the Via Crucis, and in Campus Fidei for the Vigil and for Mass at the conclusion of WYD.
Pope Francis will meet “the ones living on the outskirts”; he will visit a slum area in Rio de Janiero, where he will meet the community of Varginha; he will also meet some young inmates in Rio. The Holy Father will attend the opening of a new complex for drug addicts at St Francis of Assisi Hospital, one of the social legacies of World Youth Day.
The Pope cannot miss a visit to the Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida, where in 2007 the Fifth General Conference of Latin American and Caribbean Bishops (CELAM) took place. Pope Francis gave, as a gift, the important and significant Document of Aparecida, issued by this General Conference to Heads of Latin American States who have visited him in recent weeks.
“World Youth day opens our horizons, helps us to grow in our faith and continues to strengthen us in our everyday life with all its problems: at University, at work, at home. It marks one for life and we are sure that this will also happen here”: these are the words of Mariá and Leandro, two young members of the Focolare Movement in Rio de Janiero, who, together with others, are actively involved in the preparation of this great international event. They are working on several fronts, which include the musical on the life of Blessed Chiara Luce Badano; they are also among the intercessors of the Day. The musical will be presented on July 24 at the Grand Auditorium of “Cidade das Artes”, in Barra da Tijuca, the cultural center of Rio de Janiero. This musical is being prepared together with friends from other Catholic Movements, other Christian Churches, and also ones who know very little about Christianity. Among these there is a young Buddhist. Maria Teresa and Ruggero Badano, the parents of Chiara Luce are expected to participate. For this occasion, the publishing house Cidade Nova is launching “25 minutes: the life of Chiara Luce Badano”, the Portuguese edition of the book written by Franz Coriasco. 500,000 copies of this book will be distributed to the young people attending WYD, an initiative carried out in collaboration with “Aid to the Church in need”.
During the Vigil of July 27 at Campus Fidei, about 200 young people from Aparecida and Sao Paulo, belonging to Fazenda da Esperança and other similar associations will be on the main stage with Gen Rosso. They will perform some scenes from “Streetlight”, thus witnessing the change experienced in their lives through giving themselves and their talents to others. For almost two months the Gen Rosso Group has been touring Brazil with its “Strong without violence” project.
from focolare.org website