- Fernando Santos
Pope Francis denounced this Friday the conformism that, he said, is the "drug most consumed today" and that it prevents us from recognizing the suffering that surrounds us, during his speech on the Via Crucis that was celebrated during the World Youth Day (WYD) in Panama.
"We let ourselves be carried away by apathy and immobility, there are not a few times that conformism has won and paralyzed us and it has been difficult to recognize yourself in the suffering brother", Francis said.
While, Francisco complained, it is much easier to "be close to whom is considered popular and winning" and fall into the "culture of bullying, harassment and intimidation".
At the Via Crucis, one of the fixed acts at WYD and attended by 400,000 people according to the organization, the suffering of immigrants, indigenous people, victims of natural disasters and violence against women, among others, was denounced.
In his meditation, the Pope explained that the pain of the crucified Christ is prolonged "in the stifled cry of children who are prevented from being born and of so many others who are denied the right to have childhood, family, education; they cannot play, sing, dream...".
Francis also denounced the shame "battered women, exploited and abandoned, stripped of their dignity" and "young people who see their hopes for the future taken away by lack of education and decent work".
He reminded people that fall into "the networks of exploitation, of crime and abuse, that feed on their lives", and of families affected by "the death spiral caused by drugs, alcohol, prostitution and human traffic".
He stressed that some young people "lost the ability to dream" and "retire" with "the discontent of resignation and conformism, one of the drugs most consumed in our time".
The pontiff also talked about of those who "are singled out and treated as bearers and responsible for all social ills", in reference to migrants.
He also spoke of the suffering of the elderly, of the native peoples which "are stole of their lands, roots and culture, silencing and extinguishing all the wisdom they can bring".
And there was also space for the defense of the environment and to denounce that man is threatening the Earth "trampled by contempt and crazed consumption that overcomes all reason".
The Pope lamented "a society that lost the ability to cry and be moved by pain".
The Pope then spoke of the Virgin Mary, inspirer of this WYD, as an example of strength.
And then he asked to learn from "Mary's strength to say 'yes' to those who have not kept quiet and do not shut up before a culture of bad treat and abuse", or to family members who help their children when they "are in the bad times".
And to learn also "receive and host all those who have suffered abandonment, who have had to leave or lose their land, their roots, their families and jobs".
The Pope concluded this Via Crucis, which was staged by the countries of America that represented each station, asking that the Virgin rescue the faithful "from paralysis and confusion, from fear and despair".
Miguel SinclairMiguel Villareal