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Pope Francis calls on young people to turn to Jesus like Blessed Carlo Acutis did

Pope Francis calls on young people to turn to Jesus like Blessed Carlo Acutis did

Pope Francis arrives for a meeting with young people and organizers of ‘Alpha Camp’ on Aug. 5, 2022. VATICAN MEDIA

By AC Wimmer

Catholic News Agency

August 7, 2022

VATICAN— Pope Francis told young Catholics on Friday that Jesus is not just a moral precept but a person and a great friend.

He encouraged them to build and cultivate their relationship with Christ as Blessed Carlo Acutis did.

The first millennial to be beatified by the Catholic Church, Carlo Acutis loved the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. “To be always united with Jesus, this is my life program,” he wrote at age 7.

Speaking to participants of an Italian youth camp in an audience on Aug. 5 at the Vatican, the pontiff reminded them of the message from Christus Vivit, a post-synodal exhortation published in 2019: “Christ is alive and he wants you to be alive!”

Jesus is therefore the person a young Catholic should turn to, the pope explained.

“We are in the presence of Jesus, who knows us and loves us more than we do ourselves, and who wants each of us to find his or her own unique, personal fulfillment.”

Pope Francis concluded his remarks with a prayer: “May Jesus become your great Friend, your Companion along the way. May the living Jesus become your life! Every day and forever.”

Alpha Camp is a “Church-sponsored weeklong camp for young people in central Italy dedicated to exploring life, faith, and meaning,” Vatican News reported.

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