Pope to Scouts: You are called to collaborate in the pastoral life of the Church
(2015-06-13 Vatican) - Pope Francis met this morning with thousands of members of the Association of Italian Catholic Guides and Scouts (AGESCI) in St. Peter's Square. In his address, the Holy Father thanked the scouts, as well as their leaders and chaplains, saying that they are "a precious part of the Church in Italy."
"You offer an important contribution to the families in their educational mission to children, youth and young adults," he said.
The Pope expressed his hope that the scouts may always feel as a part of the greater Christian community.
He also noted that they can bring new fervor to the evangelization and the capacity to build bridges in a society that has the "habit of building walls."
"You are called to find ways to integrate yourselves in the pastoral care of the particular Church, establishing relationships of respect and collaboration at all levels with your bishops, with pastors and other priests, educators and members of other ecclesial associations present in the parish and in the same territory, and not be content with a 'decorative' presence on Sundays or major events."
Concluding his address, Pope Francis encouraged them to continue working together with local groups in their parishes in order to foster a "richer and more complete personality."