For children, the future is built on sharing

First World Children’s Day

On 25 and 26 May 2024, children from all over the world will gather in Rome. They are invited by Pope Francis to celebrate the First World Children’s Day organised by the Catholic Church. Around 100,000 children aged 6 to 12 are expected to attend. At the heart of the Year of Prayer, this event opens an opportunity to celebrate children’s dreams of peace and the future, inviting them to put their spontaneity at the service of human relations. It is also an occasion for the Pope to put this age group back at the centre of attention for the Church and society.

Here is an excerpt from the message that Francis addressed to the children on this occasion:

Dear young friends, the fact is that we cannot be happy all by ourselves, because our joy increases to the extent that we share it. Joy is born of gratitude for the gifts we have received and which we share in turnand it grows in our relationships with others. When we keep the blessings we have received to ourselves, or throw tantrums to get this or that gift, we forget that the greatest gift that we possess is ourselves, one another: all of us, together, are “God’s gift.” Other gifts are nice, but only if they help us to be together. If we don’t use them for that purpose, we will always end up being unhappy; they will never be enough.

Instead, when we are all together, everything is different! Think of your friends, and how great it is to spend time with them: at home, at school, in the parish and the playground, everywhere. Playing, singing, discovering new things, having fun, everyone being together and excluding no one. Friendship is wonderful and it grows only in this way: through sharing and forgiving, with patience, courage, creativity and imagination, without fear and without prejudice.

Read the full message of Pope Francis for the first World Children’s Day.


Come, Holy Spirit,
show us your beauty,
reflected in the faces
of children all over the world.
Come, Jesus,
you who make all things new,
who are the way that leads us to the Father,
come and remain with us always.


"Creation", by Arturo Araujo SJ and Chloe Rollens.
From “Heaven’s Heart” collection, General Curia of the Society of Jesus, Rome, Italy.

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Posted by Communications Office - Editor in Curia Generalizia
Communications Office
The Communications Office of the General Curia publishes news of international scope on the central government of the Society of Jesus and on the commitments of the Jesuits and their partners. It also handles media relations.

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