How the boldness of the Three Kings speaks to those preparing for WYD in Lisbon

The first message addressed by Pope Benedict XVI to the youth of the world was a meditation on the Epiphany, citing as an example the audacity of the Three Kings. Our columnist Jeanne Larghero suggests that young people who are preparing for WYD in Lisbon, or who hesitate to go there…, be entrusted to her prayers.

Benedict XVI passed away a few days before Epiphany. In a few months, young people from all over the world are invited to meet in Lisbon for World Youth Day. In August 2005, Benedict XVI presided over the first JMJ of his pontificate, in Cologne, in his native country. The place had been chosen two years earlier by John Paul II who could not have known that his successor would be German. Cologne Cathedral has been known to house the relics of the Three Kings since the 12th century: this is how the first message addressed by Pope Benedict XVI to the youth of the whole world at the very beginning of his pontificate was a meditation on the Epiphany…

The audacity of the Magi

The adoration of the Three Kings is a prefiguration of the entire movement of nations marching towards a Saviour, towards a light capable of uniting and pacifying all humanity. “We came to worship him. » It would seem that this old man who blessed crowds of young people almost twenty years ago went to unite his prayer in Heaven with that of the « Magi from the East » mentioned by Saint Matthew. We often imagine these mages as venerable sages with beards whitened by age: in reality they are the image of eternal youth. They are as young as those who do not hesitate to embark on adventurous journeys, who crave wide open spaces for their souls, who are ready to leave their homes, and who are not afraid of the unexpected. “Open your heart wide to God! Be surprised by Christ! », Launched Benedict XVI to the young people of the WYD in Cologne.

be surprised

This pope, whom we could see lately bent over with age, was therefore as young as those to whom he addressed himself: “Like you, I, too, set out to come and kneel before the white consecrated host…” and since he went to contemplate the one he adored in faith, let us entrust him particularly on this feast of the Epiphany, which he will be able to celebrate in heaven, all these young people called to discover together the face of Christ this summer in Lisbon. Some, far from the Church, will decide thanks to a meeting, a friend, an advice. Others hesitate, don’t know, still others are already preparing. But one of these days, between now and the end of July, they will decide to trust the word that invites them, and they too will choose to let themselves be surprised.

You are the representatives of these innumerable crowds of our brothers and sisters in humanity

If we know of these young people who doubt, procrastinate, who seem too far away, as far away as the Magi, let us pray for them to Saint Melchior, Saint Gaspard and Saint Balthazar: these intrepid people searched with all their heart for a king, and when they found a baby, they agreed to let themselves be picked up by this God who can do anything. They recognized his face, “the face of God who reveals himself in the child of the manger” because they had searched with heart and intelligence. Let us pray for all our young people who seek, and who are on the way like the Magi:

“Dear young people, you are the representatives of those innumerable crowds of our brothers and sisters in humanity, who wait without knowing it for the star to rise in their sky, to be guided towards Christ, Light of the nations, and to find in him the satisfying response to the thirst of their hearts” (First message of Benedict XVI to young people, WYD 2005).

Also discover in pictures the main dates of the pontificate of Benedict XVI:

The body of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

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How the boldness of the Three Kings speaks to those preparing for WYD in Lisbon

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