Easter is not just another time for young people; it is a reason for happiness and joy, which fills a dull and discouraged youth with life.
“Christ lives, our hope, and He is the most beautiful youth of this world. Everything He touches becomes young, becomes new, becomes full of life.” In the first words of the apostolic exhortation ‘Christus Vivit’, Pope Francis alleges the perpetual youthfulness of the risen Christ, a reason for joy for anyone but especially for young people. In them is Christ; their smiles embody the resurrection of God. For this reason, the Holy Father exhorts everyone: “He lives and wants you alive!”.
For the young Christian, Easter is one of the key moments of his life. The resurrection of Jesus explains that youth never goes out of fashion because it is imperishable and perennial. Every Christian is young when Christ rises and gives a new life. For many of these young people, Easter is an opportunity to meet God with other young people. This is the case of Andrea Arredondo, member of JAR Mexico, and Freddy Rivero, also part of JAR Venezuela. This year they had the opportunity to participate in Easter youth meetings and there they have discovered that Christ is truly alive. “It was amazing to live every moment in which Jesus passed by our side,” says the latter.
“Jesus gives us the opportunity to rise again”
For them, this is not an event of faith but a reason for life. Andrea assures that “through the Resurrection I see the great love that God has for us”. When Freddy is weak in faith, it gives him hope to “remember his promise of the resurrection”. It truly is a gift, as Andrea sees it. “Jesus gives us the opportunity to be resurrected too,” she says. Freddy sums it up best: “That Christ is risen is one of the things that fills my life with joy.”
That joy is not personal, but contagious. Although Andrea admits that it is very complicated, “a good way is to empathize with the world, with our good deeds and sharing the love of Christ”.
Freddy Rivero is a musician and sings for all audiences, in addition to his parish group. For this reason, he asks to be “an instrument for the Word to reach through music the hearts of young people who need it and to revive their faith and their desire to follow Him”. Young people who “have a lot of potential but lack inspiration”, as Andrea says.
“Christ is contemporary”
Following him is attractive to young people because Christ is young. For the young Mexican girl, Jesus is just another young person, “understandable and full of a love that manifests itself to us and that we interpret according to our own life. In the same way, for Freddy he is his friend, his brother, his father… When he grows, God grows. “Christ is contemporary”.
“It is very important to contemplate the young Jesus that the Gospels show us, because He was truly one of you, and in Him many notes of young hearts can be recognized”, says Pope Francis Christus Vivit. There are many notes that can be recognized in the young Christian. First of all, hope, as Andrea points out. “They must be young people with good feelings, with much happiness and renewed, because Christ is risen.”
“We young Christians are fun, creative… Happiness is always in these things”. It is the happiness of the risen Jesus, who renews and rejuvenates. “Jesus, full of life, wants to help you so that being young is worthwhile,” says Pope Francis.