Currents News Staff
Christus Vivit, or officially “Christ is Alive” in English, draws on ideas established during the Synod, presenting them over nine chapters.
[Read the entire document here]
The exhortation presents ideas of change within the Church, calling for a young Church. Pope Francis also asks for a Church with open doors and inclusive youth ministry. He states “one does not have to accept fully all the teachings of the Church to take part” but “have an open mind.”
“They are concrete themes specific to young people. The digital world, the world where they live, the family and the relationship of dialogue needed within it, especially with the elderly. The pope has repeated this, many times,” said Msgr. Fabio Fabene, the Under-Secretary, Synod of Bishops.
Sexual morality is defined as a source of “incomprehension and alienation from the Church”, viewed as “a place of judgment and condemnation” for young people. The pope admits that youth question “gender identity” and “homosexuality,” while terminology like LGBT is avoided.
The document calls youth to greater responsibility, even amidst the abuse crisis. He asks that young people be courageous enough to remind priests of their mission, if they see he is at risk or is taking the wrong path.
Trafficking, violence and abuse are discussed along with migrants. Pope Francis asks youth not to see them as a threat, or lacking the same dignity as every other human.
Women, which was a key synod topic, is also mentioned. It says Church history shows “male authoritarianism, domination, enslavement, abuse and sexist violence.” The pope calls for greater equality between males and females, but says the Church does not agree with everything feminists propose.
Discernment toward marriage, religious life or consecration is also included, calling the family the first place of accompaniment for every young person.
With each of these themes, Pope Francis’ main message is one of hope, encouraging young people to continue despite painful or dark situations. He reminds that God is love, is alive and asks youth to swim against the tide.