On Friday, August 17, 2018, a group of twenty young people from the 8th International “Youth toward Assisi” Meeting gathered on the banks of the Tiber River, to animate the Roman summer at the exhibition booth of the Franciscan Missionary Center.

It was an evening of celebration and evangelization among the masses. Every evening, people in search of relaxation and a healthy summer vacation stroll along the riverfront. The walkway features sixty exhibition booths and fifteen restaurants.
After spending five days in Assisi, a group of 350 young people speaking seventeen different languages arrived in Rome. They were accompanied by forty friars from the various Jurisdictions of the Order of Friars Minor Conventual. The group was divided into ten smaller groups and these subgroups went forth to animate some of the piazzas and churches of Rome. The young people stayed three days in the eternal city (August 17-19) and implemented the Meeting’s theme which was “Made to Shine: The Beauty of Holiness”.
A group of young Lebanese, Americans and Spaniards went to the banks of the Tiber accompanied by the General Director of the International Meeting, Friar Simone TENUTI, Friars Cristian AIOJOAEI and Michael LASKY, along with four clerical students of the Franciscanum (who had served on the banks for a month already). There, they performed songs and dances to express their joy at meeting the people and to share some Franciscan good cheer with them.
The people streaming along the banks every night were incredulous but enthusiastic as they approached the young people and the friars. They sensed the young people’s message of simplicity and Franciscan joy; it was something which realized Pope Francis’ goal for a “Church that goes forth.”
One colorful aspect of the evening: the young people enjoyed that the Missionary Center booth was alongside the Medical Assistance booth, so a sign was made with big letters that said: “First Aid for the Soul and the Body” (see last photo).

Director of the FIMP Missionary Center (Federazione Inter-mediterranea Ministri Provinciali)