Pope Francis flanked by a young man and his grandmother  (Vatican Media)

By Devin Watkins

Jul 24 2023

Pope Francis urges young people and the elderly to forge an intergenerational covenant, as the Church marks the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly and prepares for World Youth Day in Lisbon.

Speaking at the Angelus on Sunday, Pope Francis highlighted the celebrations of the 3rd World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly, celebrated on Sunday, and the upcoming World Youth Day, scheduled for 1-6 August in Lisbon, Portugal.

Young and old together

He appeared at the window of his office in the Apostolic Palace together with a young person and his grandmother, and invited the crowd in St. Peter’s Square to offer them a round of applause.

“May the proximity of the two World Days offer us an invitation to promote a much-needed covenant between generations, because the future is built together, as we share experiences and as young people and the elderly care for each other,” he said.

The Pope also urged everyone never to forget about the invaluable contributions of grandfathers and grandmothers, inviting everyone again to applaud them.

Politics in favor of the elderly

Earlier on Sunday, in his homily at Mass for the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly, Pope Francis called on politicians everywhere to implement policies that protect the rights and health of the elderly.

Crowded cities, he said, risk becoming “centers of loneliness” if societies forget their elders for “banish them as unprofitable waste”.

“May we not chase after the utopias of efficiency and performance at full-speed,” said the Pope in his homily, “lest we become incapable of slowing down to accompany those who struggle to keep up. Please, let us mingle and grow together.” – Vatican News