(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Sunday evening delivered his goodbye speech to all those present at Rio de Janeiro’s Galeao Airport gathered to see him on his way and to say “farewell”.
Brazilian President Dilma Roussef headed the delegation of political and civil authorities together with a numerous contingent of Cardinals and Bishops of the nation.
In his address, Pope Francis thanked the President, his brother Bishops and their collaborators, and the entire population of Brazil for making this week “a splendid celebration of the richness and joy of our faith in Jesus Christ”.
And he expressed his gratitude for the work of event organizers and media operators. And in particular he said his “gratitude goes to the many people who prayed, often in silence and simplicity for this World Youth Day to be an authentic experience of growth in faith”.
But above all – Pope Francis said – “my thoughts turn to those who are at the heart of these celebrations: the young people!” . “Many of you came here as disciples” – he continued – “I have no doubt that all of you will leave as missionaries”.
And he urged them to help build a civilization of love: “Show, by your life, that it is worth giving your time and talents in order to attain high ideals, it is worth recognizing the dignity of each human person, and it is worth taking risks for Christ and the Gospel”.
“I will always place my hopes in the young people of Brazil” – Pope Francis said – “and in the young around the world: through them, Christ is preparing a new springtime all over the earth”.
The Pope concluded his farewell speech turning his thoughts to Our Lady of Aparecida and imploring Mary to strengthen all Brazilians in the Christian faith.
Please find below the full text of the Pope’s discourse at the Farewell Ceremony:
Text from page http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2013/07/29/pope_francis_farewell:_i_will_always_place_my_hopes_in_young/en1-714828
of the Vatican Radio website