The summer is coming to an end. And many of you are going back to school or work. For us, the brothers of the community, the end of summer means that many of us will leave the hill for some time.
Tomorrow, two brothers leave for Africa. You know that in November we will have our third international meeting of young adults in Africa—in Kigali, Rwanda. Then there will be the European meeting in Rome. In both places, brothers along with sisters of St. Andrew and a team of young volunteers will soon be there to support the preparation.
These departures are not easy for our hearts, because our primary vocation is to live together in community, either here in Taizé or in small groups spread across the world. But the passion to work for communion among all human beings leads us to take on responsibility for these young adult meetings in various places.
Is not seeking communion the heart of the gospel? Jesus came “to gather together all the scattered children of God,” says the Gospel of St. John. And he asks us to participate with him in the creation of this unity among human beings. Yes, Christ has left us a new solidarity as his legacy. It is up to us to discover this, to bring it to light.
The gaps and dissensions that divide humanity are so deep. Mutual misunderstandings generate tensions and conflicts between continents and between countries, between generations, between citizens of a country and foreigners. We have never had so many possibilities and means of communication. And yet the divisions among human beings are getting worse.
And Christians themselves are divided. To work for reconciliation between humans, it is essential that the Churches be reconciled. Each denomination must at the same time remain true to the best of its history, but also open up to others, receiving the best of what others have. It is by walking on this path that we live visibly as people who are reconciled.
To sustain this way of reconciliation, more than ever before, we, the brothers of the community, along with you, young people of all continents, want to continue our pilgrimage of trust on earth.
The reconciliation of Christians, of course, requires theological and historical reflection. But it requires most of all encounters between people: this may be the main contribution of the pilgrimage of trust.
Through multiple encounters between people, it is already possible to anticipate the reconciliation we are longing for among all the baptized. And this gives us Christians a new dynamism to be bearers of peace in humanity.
Here we have, week after week throughout the year, the experience that Christ can bring us together beyond all borders. This communion is a miracle that never ceases to amaze us. It is by living such a miracle that the reconciled Church could become the nucleus of a universal communion.
The pilgrimage of trust, with its successive stages in every city, causes us to discover more deeply the face and the vocation of the Church. In every place where we have a meeting, we are welcomed by the local Church, by Christians of different denominations.
Everywhere we go, we find that the historical churches are going through difficult situations. Today, in all the Churches, institutions face limitations; they see the need for change but nobody knows exactly in which direction to go.
With the pilgrimage of trust we want to participate in the search for these changes. And seeing the great trust that so many Church leaders extend to this pilgrimage we are pursuing, we say to ourselves: here there is a call from God that we want to respond to with all the strength given to us.
By being bearers of communion wherever we are, we can bring to birth today the hope that so many women and men are looking for. That is how we, as Christians spread across the world, can be the salt of the earth, in order to give new vitality to those who are tired out and discouraged.
The world is thirsting for this hope. So let us not remain passive. Each one in his or her place can, together with a few others, accomplish acts of openness, of generosity, of reconciliation. The source of such a commitment is accessible to all. This source lies in the word of the Gospel and the Eucharist which nourish us.
Let us listen to Jesus tell us:
You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?... You are the light of the world. A city on a hilltop cannot be hidden.... So let your light so shine before others, so that, seeing your good works, they may give glory to your Father who is in heaven.