“This first stage is fundamental; it consists in stopping to observe the events that shape our lives, what constitutes our history, our family, cultural, and Christian roots,” Pope Francis said.
He went on: “The second stage is judging or, one might say, discerning. It is the moment in which we allow ourselves to be questioned and challenged. The key to this stage is the reference to Sacred Scripture.”
He urged Catholic Action groups to “always leave an important place to the Word of God in the life of your groups,” while giving “space to prayer, interiority, and adoration.”
The pope said that the third stage, acting, was concerned with “God’s initiative.”
“Our role, then, is to support and foster God’s action in our hearts, adapting to the ever-changing reality,” he said.
He noted that Europe had experienced significant cultural changes in recent years.
“The people your movements reach — I am thinking in particular of young people — are not the same as they were a few years ago,” he said.
“Today, especially in Europe, those who frequent Christian movements are more skeptical of institutions, they seek less demanding and more ephemeral relationships. They are more sensitive to affectivity, and therefore more vulnerable, more fragile than previous generations, less rooted in faith, but nevertheless in search of meaning and truth, and no less generous.”
“It is your mission, as Catholic Action, to reach out to them as they are, to make them grow in the love of Christ and their neighbor, and to lead them to a greater concrete commitment, so that they may be protagonists of their lives and the life of the Church, so that the world may change.”