Message of the Holy Father Benedict Xvi on the Occasion of the Twenty-Fifth World Youth Day (March 28, 2010)

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MESSAGE OF THE HOLY FATHER
BENEDICT XVI
ON THE OCCASION OF THE TWENTY-FIFTH WORLD YOUTH DAY
(MARCH 28, 2010)

“Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” (Mk 10:17)

Dear Friends,

This year marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of the inauguration of World Youth Day in response to the desire of the Venerable John Paul II for an annual gathering of young people of faith from throughout the world. It was a prophetic initiative that has borne abundant fruits, enabling the new generations of Christians to meet one another, to listen to the Word of God, to discover the beauty of the Church, and to have a deep experience of faith. This led many of them in turn to decide to give themselves completely to Christ.

The present 25th World Youth Day is one step along the way leading to the next international encounter of young people, scheduled for Madrid in August 2011. I hope that many of you will be there to experience this grace-filled event.

To prepare ourselves for this celebration, I would like to offer you some reflections on this year’s theme: “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” (Mk 10:17). It is drawn from Gospel passage where Jesus meets the rich young man. It is a theme that Pope John Paul II reflected on in 1985, in a very beautiful Letter, the first ever addressed to young people.

1. Jesus meets a young man

“As [Jesus] was setting out on a journey” – the Gospel of Saint Mark tells us – “a man ran up, knelt down before him, and asked him, ‘Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?’ Jesus answered him, ‘Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone. You know the commandments: You shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; you shall not defraud; honour your father and your mother.’ He replied and said to him, ‘Teacher, all of these I have…...

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