Dear Friend (and partner in prayer),
Our beautiful journey together ends today. We hope that the last 21 days have given you a taste for prayer and helped you live better, love better, and grow closer to God.
We put all our young hearts into this project, without really expecting that it would reach so many people. On each one of these 21 days, we rejoiced in seeing how Christ has united us, and loved hearing about people who said they used to feel estranged from Him, and have now rediscovered the joy of a deep friendship with the Lord. Many thanks for your faith in us, and for your prayers, which, we firmly believe, have been and will keep being abundantly fruitful! We are simply glad for the opportunity of being part of such a wonderful adventure.
Special thanks to Rieuc, Gigi, Emmanuel, Priscille, and the many friends who helped us reach out to the broader public. We are also grateful for an amazing spiritual support - we have learned that older individuals joined the program to pray for young people! Many thanks to Fathers Amar, Arthur, Dansette, François Dedieu, Friess, Hubert, Xavier Pollart, and Wiedemann-Goiran for their friendly support.
Before saying goodbye, we would like to tell you three final things that are very dear to us: some advice for the future, our ideal for our generation, and a request that you share your experience.
Last advice for the future
- Persevere in prayer: make a commitment with yourself to persevere in praying daily. Keep praying the Daily Examen (which we introduced to you on Day 1). You can enrich your everyday prayer by meditating God's word. Not sure what scripture passages to start with? It's very simple: read the Daily Gospel. You can find it in text form here or as a podcast.
- An lonely Christian is a Christian in danger: find (and as you know, to find implies to seek!) a place where you feel comfortable to practice your faith, e.g. a religious community, a prayer group, a youth ministry, etc.
- Seek spiritual guidance from an adult, a priest, a nun, a reliable person engaged in a community, who will listen to you, and give you their honest advice. What's more important is that you feel free to ask them about important topics around them. You should also be accepting of his advice, even if it can at times feel demanding: your guide only really wants to help you progress. As saint John Cassian (who brought the practice of Christianity to the medieval West) learnt from studying the development of others for a long time:
By no vice does the devil draw [someone] headlong and bring him to death sooner than by persuading him to neglect the counsel of the Elders and trust to his own judgment and determination”.
Here are some additional clarifications and practical guidelines to help you pick your spiritual counselor. Don't let yourself be discouraged by potential difficulties: if, like countless great saints, you initially struggle to find someone who corresponds to you, “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you” (Matthew 7: 7-8). For years, Saint Theresa of Avila could not find any suitable counselor, even after having going through dozens of candidates. Her many failures where in fact a blessing: in the end, God placed St. John of the Cross on her path. Their encounter led to the golden age of Western mysticism, which deeply affected the spirituality of people through centuries, people like saint Therese of Lisieux, saint Elisabeth of the Trinity, saint Edith Stein, Mother Theresa of Calcutta, etc.
Before saying goodbye, allow us to share our ideal with you.
Hundreds of people have been praying together during these 21 days. Imagine if each of us continued to set aside ten minutes every day for silence and prayer: hundreds of young people would invite the Lord in their heart daily. Imagine hundreds of people standing up to follow Jesus Christ's footsteps and be the leaders of a new generation of prayer, joyfulness, love, and holiness. A new generation renewing the face of the earth.
Take a moment to treasure up all these things and ponder them in your heart (cf Luke 2,19)
Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer everyone. Col 4:6