The great saints of history began their journey as ordinary young men and women. What happened for them to become saints? Someone believed in them! Can young people be saints? Of course! We must look at them with belief and help them to glimpse all the potential that they carry within.
God gave me this certainty again in the “Arise” – the initiation retreat that we offered to a group of young people in Caldas, Colombia. At one point during the retreat a boy who belongs to the “SMY” questioned the other young people by saying: “Have you thought about what each one of us can become? We can be another Christ!”
That is, we have the capacity within us to live and love like Him! This boy thought so and he passed on that way of looking at the others to me. He saw the faces of the young people who were participating and I was moved because I discovered that God had already put the image of his Son in them. He has created them with the capacity to be kind, consistent and fraternal like Jesus. Each one of them has the ability to challenge other young people, speaking to them about the love of God and deciding for what is good. From that point on I felt the call of God to deeply believe in each young person.
Saint Ignatius and Saint Francis Xavier
I remembered the meeting between Francis Xavier and Ignatius of Loyola. Francis was an adventurous young man with many talents, but at the same time he was vain and quite proud. Saint Ignatius, however, thought: if this young man directs all his passion towards Christ, he will leave a big mark on history! And that´s what happened. Following his encounter with the Love of Christ, Francis became a passionate missionary to the Asian continent. What would have happened if Ignatius had kept his first impression of Francis Xavier and gone no further? A great saint would be missing in our history! What will happen if I go no further than my first impression of others?
Let’s dream about what other people´s lives can be, because looking at others with belief is capable of transforming lives! Young people can be saints.
Annette Wiesmann SEMD Colombia