2013-02-06 Vatican Radio(Vatican Radio) “The idea behind it is to examine youth cultures, to make a critical examination of these strange things that we are seeing, try and understand it and also try to be near the youth”, says Richard Rouse, an official at the Pontifical Council for Culture which begins its Plenary Assembly Wednesday. Listen to his full interview with Emer McCarthy:
The three day gathering at the LUMSA University campus a stone’s throw from the Apostolic Palace focuses on Emerging Youth Cultures. Cardinals, philosophers, professors will spend from February 6-9 listening to and mingling with young people and students in an attempt to ‘learn to understand their language’.
“The opening evening is a highlight in itself” reveals Rouse, “in so far as we have a rock group coming to animate the opening session. So we will have our cardinals, bishops and consulters, these high brow intellectual men and women of culture engaging with the youth through the language of music”.
“Cardinal Ravasi has been trying to engage with the music of Amy Winehouse in the last few days and he’s very interested in finding out what are the expectations of the youth, what is their language, what is this desire, this very strong passionate emotional will to participate in life and the drama of life, but at the same time its not engaging with the Church. Why is there this breakdown in the transmission of the faith? Why are we not able to talk to them in a language that they can understand?”
But the official adds, the most important aspect of the Assembly is that it is a chance for young people to be heard:
“We have as a subtitle ‘Faith in the Youth’ so it’s a play on words. In this Year of Faith where is the faith of the youth? But also it’s our trust in them. We are looking to the youth positively”.