August 3rd, 2019, Hall Paul VI, Vatican City
Dear Friends, Good morning and welcome!
I thank Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco for his words and I also thank all of you for being here, and for undertaking a long walk to get here! You have come a long way. Surely you are a little tired. I am certain of one thing: that inside you feel freer than before. I am certain of this. And what does this tell us? That freedom is achieved on the move; it is not bought at the supermarket. It is achieved on the move. Freedom is not achieved by staying locked in a room with a cell phone, nor by overdoing it in order to escape reality somewhat. No, freedom is achieved on the move, step by step, together with others, never alone!
You had five stops on your route, five encounters with great saints who travelled through Europe in different eras: Paul of Tarsus, Benedict of Nursia, Cyril and Methodius, Francis of Assisi, Catherine of Siena. These people, these saints, what did they have in common? They did not wait for something from life or from others, but trusted in God and took risks; they got involved, on the move in order to achieve dreams so great that after centuries they have done good for us too, for you, for everyone. They gave their life; they did not keep it for themselves. So, after these five encounters, I would like to leave you five words. You had five encounters; I would like to leave you five words. They are not my own, but are from the Gospel which accompanied you on your journey and which I invite you to keep with you always, as your navigator — the Gospel is the true navigator for the journey of life — and to open it each day, because the Gospel is the map for life. Here are Jesus’ five words; they are five words, easy to remember: “give, and it will be given to you” (Lk 6:38). Five words, but one entire message, a plan for life. Simple words, which outline a clear route. Give, and it will be given to you.