“From confession comes new strength to love and change the world,” Pope Benedict XVI
(30 Mar. 2007) : “Young people: go to confession often so that you shall renew your
capacity to love! It will help you change the world and bring to it a civilisation
of love,” said Pope Benedict XVI in a message delivered to thousands of young people
who filled St Peter’s Square on Thursday. “In the heart of each man, beggar for love,
there is a thirst for love. Indeed, Man cannot live without love. He remains a being
that is incomprehensible for himself, his life is senseless, if love is not revealed
to him, if he does not encounter love, if he does not experience it and make it his
own, if he does not participate intimately in it,” the Pope told his young listeners.
The Pontiff further continued: “But tonight as you approach the sacrament
of the confession, you will be able to experience the free gift God makes of His life,
so that we can become new beings. After that, be prepared to use love with you families,
friends, and even those who have given you offence; be prepared to bear witness of
the true Christian love wherever you study and work, in parish communities, groups,
movements, associations, in every realm of society,” the Pope added.
Pope Benedict performed a key priestly duty, entered one of the confessionals of St.
Peter's Basilica to hear the confessions of various young people from the Diocese
of Rome, in preparation for the diocesan-level World Youth Day, to be held Sunday
in Rome. 200 priests administered the sacrament of reconciliation to thousands of
young men and women in St. Peter’s Basilica.
The Holy Father will preside
over World Youth Day in the morning of April 1, Palm Sunday, in St. Peter's Square.
The Mass will begin with a blessing of the palms and a procession.