Pope Francis, a model of simplicity and humility for the young—priest

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MANILA, March 27, 2013—Pope Francis sets a stunning example of simplicity and humility among young people who couldn’t live without their gadgets or forego their lavish lifestyle.

While young people of today would always subscribe to the latest trends in technology and fashion as status symbols, Pope Francis has opted to reside in the workers’ St. Martha’s residence inside the Vatican City instead of moving to the Apostolic Palace where the Holy Father usually stays for the duration of his pontificate.

When Pope Francis was still Buenos Aires Archbishop Jorge Cardinal Bergoglio, he reportedly lived in a small apartment instead of the archbishop’s palace. The then Bergoglio also reportedly cooked his own food and rode public transportation to his work and appointments.

According to Fr. Conegundo Garganta, the news of how simple Pope Francis lives is a “big deal” among the young, considering that the new generation of Catholics is used to living a fast-paced life.

“With the new Pope, we are reminded that there is still an option for a simple way of life,” he said.

In an interview with YouthPinoy, the executive secretary of the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Youth (ECY) said Pope Francis’ simple and ordinary gestures deliver meaningful messages.

“His simplicity and humility are a big deal. He is setting himself as an example and is inviting us to go back to the more essential things in life,” Garganta added.

He also predicted that the newsworthiness of Pope Francis will not end after his election to the papacy as he keeps on “surprising and even challenging onlookers” who already have preconceived notions about the Holy Father and making presumptions and predictions.

But as a pastor for youth ministers, Garganta said the young faithful expects the new Pope to be “charismatic and dynamic in relating with the youth.”

“Just like the two previous Popes, Pope Francis is also expected to give integral attention to the youth, hopefully beyond the continuing spirit of the World Youth Day,” he added.

Pope Francis was elected in a conclave last March 14 as the first Latin American to lead the world’s 1.2-billion Catholics. At least 115 cardinals all over the globe participated in his election. (YouthPinoy)

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