World Youth Day USA Guides International Pilgrimage Leaders Guide - Page 20

prepared to leave Rio de Janeiro in 2013, Jesus him. St. John Paul II, the father and patron “not only sends us, he accompanies us, he is saint of World Youth Day, explained this always beside us in our mission of love.”20 dynamic very well when he said, “our personal encounter with Christ bathes life in new light, The pilgrims have followed the leader on sets us on the right path, and sends us out to pilgrimage and, hopefully, encountered Jesus be his witnesses.”22 Christ who accompanied them on the journey. This is the life of the disciple, the one who is The response to the personal encounter as a sent. When Jesus sent out the seventy-two, he witness sent by Jesus Christ into the world is had them take little on the journey, beyond called living as a “missionary disciple.” This trust in him (cf. Lk 10:1-12). They returned to term captures a reality which is central to the him joyfully telling stories of all that was done work of the New Evangelization as the in his name (cf. Lk 10:17-20). Jesus Christ Church moves more fully from maintenance continues to do the same today. Both the to mission.23 Pope Francis uses the term very leader and the pilgrims are not only disciples, often in his preaching and catechesis and but they are sent on mission – they are explains it clearly in his apostolic exhortation, “missionary disciples.” Evangelii Gaudium. Living as Missionary Disciples In virtue of their baptism, all the members When he spoke to the volunteers at the end of of the People of God have become World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, Pope missionary disciples (cf. Mt 28:19). All the Francis said “the most beautiful service we baptized, whatever their position in the can give as missionary disciples” is “to Church or their level of instruction in the prepare the way so that all people may know, faith, are agents of evangelization, and meet and love the Lord.”21 it would be insufficient to envisage a plan Just as the leader and the pilgrims have of evangelization to be carried out by encountered Jesus Christ, so they have a professionals while the rest of the faithful mission to assist others in having such an would simply be passive recipients. The encounter or deepening their relationship with new evangelization calls for personal Homily for Closing Mass on the Occasion of the XXVIII World Youth Day, Rio de Janeiro, July 28, 2013, 1. 21 Pope Francis, Meeting with Volunteers of the XXVIII World Youth Day, July 28, 2013. Pope John Paull II, Message of the Holy Father on the Occasion of the XVII World Youth Day, July 25, 2001. 23 See XII Ordinary Synod of Bishops (2012), Proposition 22. 20 22 18