The Holy Father spent this morning at St. Mary's, Twickenham with thousands of schoolchildren many of whom, God bless them, travelled through the night to be there, and their warm welcome for the Holy Father was very enthusiastic, sincere and full of joy. It was truly wonderful to watch.
On the BBC's coverage, a number of children and young people were asked questions by the BBC journalist, who seemed to be trying very hard and repeatedly so, to elicit negative responses from them, but all to no avail! I thought the interviewees communicated without fuss, from the heart, their great joy at being present with the Holy Father, meeting him, or just seeing him at today's 'Big Assembly'.
The Holy Father addressed Teachers and Religious, reminding them of their task of assisting in the formation of the person, imparting true wisdom which is inseparable from knowlege of the Creator, and paying tribute to their vital work and apostolate. And he added:
"Indeed, the presence of religious in Catholic schools is a powerful reminder of the much-discussed Catholic ethos that needs to inform every aspect of school life. This extends far beyond the self-evident requirement that the content of the teaching should always be in conformity with Church doctrine. It means that the life of faith needs to be the driving force behind every activity in the school, so that the Church’s mission may be served effectively, and the young people may discover the joy of entering into Christ’s “being for others” (Spe Salvi, 28)."
You can find the full text here