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Tuesday, July 23, 2013


Vatican City, 23 July 2013 (VIS) – At 3.40 p.m. yesterday (twenty minutes ahead of schedule) the aeroplane carrying the Pope landed at the carioca airport of Galeao where he was received by the president of the Republic of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, accompanied by the governor of the state of Rio de Janeiro, Cabral Filho and the mayor of Rio de Janeiro, Eduardo Paes. The Pope was also greeted by Archbishop Orani Joao Tempesta of Sao Sebastiao do Rio de Janeiro, and Cardinal Raymundo Damasceno Assis, archbishop of Aparecida and president of the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil. It was a warm and informal welcome, without formal addresses, which were given later at the official welcome ceremony at Guanabara Palace.

The Holy Father travelled the eight kilometres from the airport to the presidential palace in a utility vehicle with the back window open to greet the crowd who thronged the route. During some parts of the journey the vehicle was forced to stop since there were no security cordons to hold back the crowd. Upon nearing the cathedral the vehicle was exchanged for the unarmoured Popemobile which will be used during the visit, and the route was unexpectedly changed to enable the Pope to greet the crowds who had awaited him for hours.

Upon arrival at Guanabara Palace, Francis greeted the senior state and diplomatic representative and, after listening to the anthems of Brazil and Vatican City State, he gave his first address as Pope in the American continent.

He began, “In his loving providence, God wished that the first international trip of my pontificate should take me back to my beloved Latin America, specifically to Brazil … I have learned that, to gain access to the Brazilian people, it is necessary to pass through its great heart; so let me knock gently at this door. I ask permission to come in and spend this week with you. I have neither silver nor gold, but I bring with me the most precious thing given to me: Jesus Christ! I have come in his name, to feed the flame of fraternal love that burns in every heart; and I wish my greeting to reach one and all: The peace of Christ be with you!”

The Pope went on to cordially greet the president for her warm welcome and said to the bishops that, by his visit to Brazil, he wished to “pursue the pastoral mission proper to the Bishop of Rome of confirming my brothers in their faith in Christ, of encouraging them to give an account of the reasons for the hope which comes from him, and of inspiring them to offer everyone the inexhaustible riches of his love”.

However, he continued, “the principal reason for my visit to Brazil goes beyond its borders. I have actually come for World Youth Day. I am here to meet young people coming from all over the world, drawn to the open arms of Christ the Redeemer. … These young people are from every continent, they speak many languages, they bring with them different cultures, and yet they also find in Christ the answer to their highest aspirations, held in common, and they can satisfy the hunger for a pure truth and an authentic love which binds them together in spite of differences. … Christ has confidence in young people and entrusts them with the very future of his mission, 'Go and make disciples'. Go beyond the confines of what is humanly possible and create a world of brothers and sisters! And young people have confidence in Christ: they are not afraid to risk for him the only life they have, because they know they will not be disappointed”.

He emphasised that, in addressing the young, he is also speaking to “their families, their local and national church communities, the societies they come from, and the men and women upon whom this new generation largely depends”. He recalled the saying, “'Our children are the apple of our eyes'. How beautiful is this expression of Brazilian wisdom, which applies to young people an image drawn from our eyes, which are the window through which light enters into us, granting us the miracle of sight! What would become of us if we didn’t look after our eyes? How could we move forward? I hope that, during this week, each one of us will ask ourselves this thought-provoking question. … Young people are the window through which the future enters the world, thus presenting us with great challenges. Our generation will show that it can realize the promise found in each young person when we know how to give them space; how to create the material and spiritual conditions for their full development; how to give them a solid basis on which to build their lives”.

Pope Francis concluded by asking everyone to “show consideration towards each other and, if possible, the sympathy needed to establish friendly dialogue”. He added, “The arms of the Pope now spread to embrace all of Brazil in its human, cultural and religious complexity and richness. From the Amazon Basin to the pampas, from the dry regions to the Pantanal, from the villages to the great cities, no one is excluded from the Pope’s affection”.

After his address, Pope Francis met privately with the president and with the governor and major of Rio de Janeiro. He then transferred to the Sumare residence, which belongs to the archbishop of Rio de Janeiro, where he will stay during his visit.

Today, Tuesday, the Pope will spend the day resting and acclimatising, and will resume activities tomorrow with a visit to the shrine of Aparecida, 200 kilometres from the Brazilian capital.


Vatican City, 23 July 2013 (VIS) – During the flight from Rome to Rio de Janeiro, Pope Francis personally greeted the seventy media representatives who accompanied him on the aircraft. On this, his first international apostolic journey for World Youth Day 2013, he expressed his gratitude and, thanking those present, explained the meaning of his journey and his wish to encounter the young and to promote a society able to unite the forces of youth with the experience and wisdom of maturity.

This first trip is precisely to meet the young, but to find them not isolated from their lives – I would like to find them as part of the social fabric, in society. Because, when we isolate the young, we do a great injustice: we remove their sense of belonging. The young belong – they belong to family, a homeland, a culture, a faith... they belong in this way, and we must not isolate them! But above all, we must not isolate them from the rest of society. They – it is true – are the future of the people, this is true! But not the young alone. They are the future, they have the strength, they are young, they go ahead”.

The Pope then recalled the “other extreme of life, the elderly - they too are the future. A populace has a future if it advances on both sides. … I often think we do injustice to the elderly; we cast them aside as if they had nothing to offer us. They have wisdom, the wisdom of life, the wisdom of history, the wisdom of the homeland, the wisdom of the family, and we need all this”.

The Holy Father emphasised that “the global crisis does not bring good to the young … we run the risk of having a generation that has never had a job, and work brings the personal dignity of earning a living. The young, at this time, are in a situation of crisis. We are somewhat accustomed to this culture of rejection: too often we discard the elderly. But now, also with the young unemployed, the culture of rejection reaches them too. We have to eliminate this habit of rejection!” The Pope concluded by asking that the journalists help him in working for the good of society, for both young and old.


Vatican City, 23 July 2013 (VIS) – Today, the Holy Father:

- appointed Bishop Luis Armando Tineo Rivera as bishop of Carora (area 11,708, population 298,000, Catholics 288,000, priests 34, permanent deacons 2, religious 42), Venezuela. Bishop Tineo Rivera, previously auxiliary of Caracas, Venezuela, was born in Caracas, Venezuela in 1948, was ordained to the priesthood in 1980, and received episcopal ordination in 2007.

- appointed Msgr. Gustavo Oscar Zanchetta as bishop of Oran (area 55,000, population 360,000, Catholics 285,000, priests 35, permanent deacons 3, religious 80), Argentina. The bishop-elect was born in Rosario, Argentina in 1964 and was ordained a priest in 1991. He was subsequently appointed secretary for the Commission for the Ministers of the Argentine Episcopal Conference, and has served in a number of pastoral roles, including priest in the parish of San Francisco de Asis, parish administrator in N.S. del Puente, Berazategui, director of the pre-seminary, secretary to the bishop emeritus of Quilmes, professor in the Profesorado de Ciencias Sagradas and in the seminary of Quilmes, and chancellor of the Movimiento Familiar Cristiano. He obtained a licentiate in fundamental theology from the Gregorian Pontifical University in 2000 and is currently executive under-secretary of the Argentine Episcopal Conference.
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