At the beginning of Holy Mass, Fr. Marinko Sakota, OFM, thanked Cardinal of Vrhbosna Vinko Puljic, for his coming here and expressed his great joy as our shepherd from Bosnia and Herzegovina joined us here.
“Your Most Reverend Eminence, I know how long you have waited for this moments and how you longed to be with us in Medjugorje. I know how much you were with us and sympathised with us in these years”, said Fr. Marinko.
On the fourth day of the 30th Youth Festival, there were 537 priests concelebrating and 2.524.300 live-stream viewers followed, as well as hundreds of thousands who were watching different TV stations that broadcasted the programme live.
“I congratulate you this 30th Youth Festival and I congratulate all of you who came to pray here without being forced to do so. At first, someone may ask what has brought you here, all of you who came from different countries to pray. I am certain you all carry within yourself desire of every young person – I would like to be happy, I would like to have a purpose in my life, I would not like to live in vain. We seek for the greatest treasure, value and purpose. Mary is the one directing us to her Son, for He is the true value. Cardinal mentioned one recent poll from Europe among the youth and their biggest values. At the first place they placed family. Today family is attacked and young people see that as the value for they are all coming from the families and are preparing for the families. At the second place they put friendship, as in the young age they value friends and not being alone. At the third place, they put material safety – to have and to spend. Jesus explains us that, the richness is not to spend, but it is to be what we are and that is why we need to check our values all the time. The faith for them is at the fourth place, yet the faith that brought you here, that gathers you all here is very encouraging for us. The next value is the purpose of life, each of us wishes to know what we live for. There is nothing as bad as reaching the end of life thinking we have lived in vain. This purpose shall not be granted to us, we need to discover ourselves. Then, at the following place we have the spirituality. They explained in this poll how there is not a single person that has not thought at one point of his life how perhaps God was calling him or her.
Young people are also aware they are not completely stable, at one point they have the enthusiasm, while all of the sudden it disappears and they happened to become depressed. In this fall youth often experiences indifference and this is the new atheism.” Cardinal Puljic added that youth came here to seek for the true values of life; their own “I” and he offered them few tasks in the challenges of this reality.
“You ought to construct the Christian character, your own identity. I do not need to be anyone’s copy. God is so rich in His creation that He created us all different and therefore we need to accept this identity. I also encourage you - never stop praying, for prayer is the wonderful communion with God. There is a saying “You become who you hang out with”, so if you spend time with God, you would be imbued by His love. Never think you are alone in this world! None of us would be in alone in Heaven; sadly none of would be alone in hell, either. We are social creatures and it is highly important to have hearts open for the others”, said Cardinal Puljic and at the end quoted one Bosnian Servant of God, Petar Barbaric – ‘To fulfil duties and obligations of our age is the fastest way of holiness’. I wish for each of you to understand – we need to be fulfilled by working with God and with people, by accepting our reality to fulfil the will of God in this world”, said Cardinal Puljic and gained a long applause at the end of his homily. At the end of Holy Mass he asked all to join him in the prayer of Angelus for the intentions of all those who asked him for prayers in this Holy Mass.
Former addicts from the community Cenacolo spoke before the Holy Mass and continued their programme afterwards with the musical play. (PHOTO)