The Youth and the Elderly: A Relationship to Cherish and Make Fruitful
Pope Francis’s recent trip to Canada coincided with the commemoration of the second annual World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly. The Holy Father decided to focus some of his reflections on grandparents and the elderly, particularly their relationship with young people.
**The following are excerpts from an article published by the Dicastery for Laity, Family, and Life. Read the whole article here.
“…On Tuesday, July 26, the Feast day of St. Joachim and St. Anne, grandparents of Jesus, Pope Francis dedicated a thought towards the indigenous grandmothers of Canada – the Kokums – who educate, love, and pass on the faith to the youth of their country. “Your hearts are springs from which the living water of faith flowed, and with it, you quenched the thirst of your children and grandchildren,” said the Pontiff on the shores of Lake St. Anne.
“Don’t abandon us!” is also the plea of many elderly people who “risk dying alone at home or in a nursing home”. Of patients who, in place of affection, are administered death” the Pontiff continued in his address, but it is also “the muffled plea of young people who are more interrogated than listened to, who delegate their freedom to a cell phone, while in the same streets other young people wander about, lost, aimless, prey to addictions that only make them depressed and frustrated, unable to believe in themselves or to love themselves for who they are or to appreciate the beauty of their lives.
“The Pope proposes something different, something affectionate, kind, that helps generativity…a love that helps us to create something new. In this, there is a social and ecclesial value: the elderly for Francis are people who with their gentleness, with their weaknesses, their fragilities help others to grow.”