Rome Newsroom, Aug 26, 2023 / 13:45 pm
Young Russian Catholics attending a faith-sharing event in St. Petersburg had a special experience Friday: an interactive video exchange with Pope Francis, who urged them to be peacemakers and “bridge builders” with the courage to “replace fears with dreams.”
The hourlong, livestreamed conversation took place Aug. 25 during the 10th edition of the All-Russian Meeting of Catholic Youth in St. Petersburg’s Basilica of St. Catherine of Alexandria. The five-day event concludes Sunday.
Without referring directly to Russia’s war in Ukraine, the Holy Father called on the youth to pursue peace “in the midst of so many conflicts” happening around the world.
“Dear young people, I do not want to preach a long sermon. I invite you to be bridge builders. Builders of bridges between generations, recognizing the dreams of those who have gone before you on the journey,” Pope Francis said, speaking in Spanish with the aid of a Russian translator.