June 1, 2018

Archbishop salutes CYO honorees for living ‘the joy of the Gospel’

By John Shaughnessy

Catholic Youth Organization logoIt was an evening marked by joy—a celebration of a special group of youths, men and women who make a difference to the young people who participate in the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) in the archdiocese.

Smiling throughout the CYO’s Volunteer Awards Ceremony on May 1, Archbishop Charles C. Thompson stressed that such an attitude of joy should reflect the lives of all Christians.

(Related: List of all award winners)

“I think of Pope Francis reminding us that we must go out and live the joy of the Gospel, that we can’t look like all those Christians coming back from a funeral,” the archbishop said during his remarks at SS. Peter and Paul Cathedral in Indianapolis.

Looking out on all the young people, coaches, pastors, families and friends who gathered for the CYO event, Archbishop Thompson added, “So live those virtues, live that quality of life—to give that witness, especially one of joy.”

The archbishop then reminded the gathering to always focus on the true source of joy for Christians.

“As we gather here, we’re reminded that we engage one another as a person, as a human being created in the image of God,” he said. “But more than that, as Christians, we engage each other in the light of Christ.

“That is our call. That is what we’re about as Christians—to encounter the person of Jesus Christ that we find hopefully in each relationship. So as we gather here tonight, we’re reminded that when we seek to build up the kingdom of God what we must keep in the center is Christ. To the degree we do that, we are giving incredible witness and the joy of the Gospel to the kingdom at hand.”

Archbishop Thompson praised how that combination of witness and joy was reflected in the lives of the people being honored by the CYO that night. He also saluted the families, friends and pastors who support the volunteers’ efforts.

“We honor tonight those who preach the Gospel by the witness and goodness of their lives,” he said. “Let us realize how blessed we are to have such wonderful people and leaders in our archdiocese.” †


Read more about the St. John Bosco Award recipients

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