Festival pilgrims told to be courageous

Pilgrims carry a cross at the closing Mass of the Australian Catholic Youth Festival in Perth yesterday (ACBC)

Perth Archbishop Timothy Costelloe SDB has encouraged thousands of young Catholics to leave the 2019 Australian Catholic Youth Festival ready to open their hearts and lives to Jesus. Source: ACBC Media Blog.

An open-air Mass at Trinity College in East Perth yesterday was the culmination of the three-day festival, which attracted 5500 young people from across the country. It was the largest Catholic event ever held in Western Australia.

In his homily at the Mass, which also drew members of the wider Perth Catholic community, Archbishop Costelloe reflected on the number of questions Jesus asks – and is asked – in the Gospels.

In particular, he reflected on the question from someone introduced in the Bible as a rich young man. In the Gospels, the man asks Jesus: “Master, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

Archbishop Costelloe reminded pilgrims that the young man could respond affirmatively to the requirement of having obeyed the commandments, but was more challenged by Jesus’ invitation to “sell all you own and give the money to the poor and then come and follow me”.

”What a challenge this young man is presented with. What an opportunity for generosity and for heroism,” Archbishop Costelloe said.

“But then comes what I think is one of the saddest sentences in the Gospels: ‘When the young man heard these words, he turned away and went away sad because he was a person of great wealth’.”

While the rest of the man’s story is not told in the Gospels, Archbishop Costelloe said the question is one all Christians are called to consider and pray about.

“The key line in the story, of course, in the answer Jesus gives to the rich young man is this – and it will be the key line in whatever answer Jesus gives to you: ‘Come and follow me’. So don’t walk away sad from the opportunity Jesus holds out to you for an heroic life.

The next Australian Catholic Youth Festival will take place in December 2021, with the bishops planning to host the event in regional Australia.

“Having been to four of our five major capital cities, next time we’re going to try and host ACYF in one of our rural centres,” Archbishop Costelloe said.


At closing Mass, Festival pilgrims told to be courageous (ACBC Media Blog)

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