Pope Francis is mid-way through longest official trip to Portugal
With the nation hanging on every moment of World Youth Day as it plays out in Lisbon, Lusa news agency has compiled a selection of perhaps the most relevant phrases yet by the 86-year-old head of the Roman Catholic Church, who is still only mid-way through this momentous event.
“We must not be afraid to feel restless, to think that everything we can do is not enough. In this sense and a just measure, being discontent is a good antidote to the presumption of self-sufficiency and narcissism.“
“It would be a waste to think of a university that has committed itself to training the new generations only to perpetuate the current elitist and unequal system of the world with higher education that remains a privilege of the few (…). If those who have received higher education do not endeavour to give back what they have benefited from, it means that they have not deeply understood what has been offered to them.”
“We must recognise the dramatic urgency of caring for our common home. However, this cannot be done without a conversion of heart and a change in the anthropological vision underlying economics and politics. We cannot be content with mere palliative measures or timid and ambiguous compromises (…) Rather, it is a matter of taking to heart what unfortunately continues to be postponed: the need to redefine what we call progress and evolution.“
“Do not forget that we need an integral ecology to listen to the suffering of the planet together with that of the poor; to place the drama of desertification alongside that of refugees; the theme of migration together with the fall in the birth rate; the need to deal with the material dimension of life in the context of a spiritual dimension. We don’t want polarisation, but an overall vision.“
“It is not enough for a Christian to be convinced. He must be convincing (…) Moreover, Christianity cannot be lived as a fortress surrounded by walls, which erects bulwarks against the world.“
“A life without crises is an aseptic life (…). It is like distilled water. Distilled water is water without crises. It has no flavour. It is good for nothing except to keep in the wardrobe and close the door.“
“We have to take on and resolve crises. In crises, you have to walk, take them on and rarely alone. That is also important. Walking together to face the crisis together. And to eat a bean stew.“
“Sometimes in life you have to get your hands dirty to avoid getting your heart dirty.”
“Never get tired of asking. Asking questions is good (…) those who ask remain restless and restlessness is the best medicine against habituation, that creeping normality that anaesthetises the soul.“
And referring to social media:
“These are the illusions of the virtual, and we must be careful not to be fooled because many realities that attract us and promise happiness later turn out to be what they are, vain things, superfluous things, things that are of no use and that leave us empty inside.“
“Indeed, your name is known, it appears on social networks, and it is processed by algorithms that associate it with tastes and preferences. But all this does not question your uniqueness, just your usefulness for market research.“
Portugal is living in another reality … until Sunday. On Sunday, the World Youth Day jamboree will come to a close, and the reality that has been swept away by this week’s events will return, say leader writers who refer specifically to the quality of public transports through this colourful event, which have worked “with Nordic efficiency”. There are many aspects of World Youth Day that citizens would like to see carried through to everyday, writes Correio da Manhã’s editorial director Miguel Alexandre Ganhão.
For details of what is coming today, see our report: “Portugal prepared for one of largest operations ever in hosting World Youth Day”