Speaking on Saturday at a vigil service to rally enthusiasm for the Catholic Church’s World Youth Day, Pope Francis disclosed that he might not live up to 2019 and urged young people to lead the church’s future.
“I don’t know if it will be me, but the Pope will be in Panama!” he told the crowd gathered at the St. Mary Major basilica.
According to the AP, the 80-year-old Pope referred to his own mortality twice in the span of a few minutes at the vigil... A few minutes earlier, he drew gasps from the pews when he teased: “At my age, we (old people) are about to pass away.”
Upon sensing the congregation pained reaction, he added: “Who guarantees life? No one. At your age, you have the future ahead of you.”
“The future is in your hands,” he told the youths.