Sunday, July 31, 2016

Pope Francis Asks Young Cubans “Don’t Be Afraid”

Pope Francis Asks Young Cubans "Don't Be Afraid" / 14ymedio, Zunilda Mata

14ymedio, Zunilda Mata, Havana, 29 July 2016 – A message from Pope
Francis aimed at young Cubans raised spirits Thursday in celebrations
that took place in Havana simultaneously with World Youth Day held in
Krakow, Poland. "Young Cubans: open yourselves to great things! Do not
be afraid!" the Bishop of Rome told them in a few words that were
projected on a large screen in front of more than a thousand Catholics
throughout the island.

Havana's Cathedral Square, from early Thursday morning, displayed a
panorama completely different from usual. Although there was no lack of
tourists, performers and, of course, the police, there were around 1,300
young Catholics from all provinces who met "in sync with Krakow,"
according to the organizers.

During the early afternoon, the delegations made their cultural and
pastoral presentations. The Santiago delegation accompanied the chorus
of the "first diocese in Havana bringing the message of Charity"with
percussion instruments. Those from Camagüey presented a choreographed
dance, while those from Bayamo, Pinar del Rio and participants from
every corner of the island made an effort to leave their mark on the

Among the more than 60 young people from Camagüey who attended the
meeting was Dariel Hernandez, coordinator of the youth ministry in that
diocese. "We come having prepared for this event for almost a year to be
in sync with what is happening right now in Poland with Pope Francis. We
have raised money to cover the cost of these activities," he explained
to 14ymedio.

Melisa Boga, is a second year student of Foreign Languages at the
University of Cienfuegos. "We are 84 from our province; I hope and
desire to know the reality of the other young people who have come
here," she said.

Around 9:00 PM, a message to young Cubans sent by Pope Francis
specifically for the occasion was broadcast, interrupted with cheers and
shouts of approval.

The pontiff recalled the legacy of Father Felix Varela when he said,
"You are the sweet hope of the nation." And declared, "To be carriers of
hope you need not to lose the ability to dream," and said that someone
who "doesn't have the capacity to dream is already retired."

"Young Cubans: open yourselves to great things! Do not be afraid!"
continued Francis, while the crowd cheered and applauded. " Dream that
with you, the world can be different! Dream that Cuba, with you, can be
different, and better every day. Do not give up!" he said.

"It is not necessary for us all to think in the same way. No, everyone
has to join in the 'social friendship,' even with those who think in a
different way. But we all have something in common: the wish to dream,
and this love for the homeland," said the Pope Francis. The Pope invited
young Catholics to "to build bridges, to work together with the word,
with the desire, with the heart."

Source: Pope Francis Asks Young Cubans "Don't Be Afraid" / 14ymedio,
Zunilda Mata – Translating Cuba -

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