The Australian Catholic Youth Festival opened today in Sydney with Pope Francis’ message being read out to the 20,000 young people aged 18 to 30 who came from all over Australia to take part in the event. The message was read out by Mgr. Anthony Fisher, Archbishop of Sydney and Bishops’ Delegate for Youth. The Pope expressed the “hope” that the Festival may “increase in young people the desire to recommit themselves to daily prayer, to reading of the Sacred Scriptures, and to a faith-filled participation in the Eucharistic Sacrifice. In this way, the festival will be an occasion for young Catholics of the nation to deepen their relationship with the Lord and to offer the Church and society the message of faith which is a flame that grows stronger the more it is shared and passed on, so that everyone may know, love, and confess Jesus Christ, the Lord of Life and History”.