Vatican City, Oct 22, 2003 / 22:00 pm
Pope John Paul II commended the bishops of England and Wales today on their pastoral initiatives and their efforts in youth ministry, the media and education, despite the prevalent secularism in their regions.
These efforts are important, said the Pope, because they all contribute to the evangelization of culture, which “is a central aspect of the new evangelization,” said the Pope. The Episcopal Conference of England and Wales was in Rome for their first “ad Limina” visit in the new millennium.
The Pope said he was “heartened” to learn about the priority the bishops are giving youth ministry. The growth of such groups is “evidence of the desire of many young people to share in the Church’s life,” he said.
“Offer [the young people] an integral Christian formation and challenge them to follow Christ,” he urged. “You will find their enthusiasm and generosity exactly what is needed to promote a spirit of renewal not just among themselves but in the entire Christian community.”