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Pope Francis speaks with North, Central and South American students as part of the Building Bridges initiative in 2022 (CNS/YouTube)

Australian students will join other Asia-Pacific young people in an online dialogue with Pope Francis ahead of his trip to the region. Source: NCR Online. 

The online meeting will provide young people with the chance to engage in frank conversations with the Pope about challenges facing their lives and the church in the modern world.

The June 20 conversation will include students from Australia, Indonesia, Timor-Leste, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Japan, South Korea and more and is sponsored by the Building Bridges Initiative organised by Loyola University Chicago, and co-organised with the Vatican’s Pontifical Commission for Latin America.

This will be the fourth online dialogue of its kind and is part of an effort to continue the Pope’s promotion of synodality, and to show his commitment to directly listening to voices across the Catholic Church.

While the papal conversation is a high point of the Building Bridges Initiative, according to organisers, the primary purpose of the program is not the encounter between the Pope and the students, but among students themselves and the network that is being built between cultures and countries that continues long after the encounter with the Pope.

During past encounters, students have engaged in unscripted dialogue with the Pope on matters ranging from war and conflict, the climate crisis, migration and a myriad of local social concerns.

The upcoming conversation will be livestreamed in both English and Spanish.


Pope to participate in dialogue with Asia-Pacific students ahead of September trip (By Christopher White, NCR Online)