Pope tells youths at detention center joy involves discipline, freedom
Published: March 19, 2007
ROME (CNS) -- Pope Benedict XVI visited a Rome juvenile detention center and told young people that true happiness involves discipline as well as freedom. The pope celebrated Mass in the chapel of the Casal del Marmo Prison for Minors March 18, then met with the 49 young detainees in a gym. Greeting them individually, he gave each one a blessing and a rosary. The young people, including many immigrants and non-Catholics, said they were moved by the fact that a pope would take time to visit them. "When they told us you were coming, we were shocked. We couldn't imagine someone as important as you would come to see us," one young man said in an official greeting to the pontiff. He said the young people at the center knew they had made mistakes, and "we know we have to pay, but the price is high and we suffer a lot." The pope's visit brought a ray of hope and festivity to the routine at the detention center, according to officials there.
Copyright (c) Catholic News Service /U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. The CNS news report may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed, including but not limited to such means as framing or any other digital copying or distribution method, in whole or in part without the prior written authority of Catholic News Service .