“Dear young people,” wrote Pope Francis on the occasion of the 32nd World Youth Day, “you need the wisdom and the vision of the elderly. […] They will speak to you of things that can thrill your minds and fill your hearts”.

We are approaching Christmas, when Jesus is born within our families. This year, in the particular climate in which we are living, there is an opportunity for young people to receive a special gift. Because of the pandemic, there are more elderly people who live alone. We can create bonds with each of them – this is a treasure waiting to be discovered!

Following the success of their campaign: “The elderly are your grandparents”, in which the Dicastery for Laity Family and Life collected virtual hugs sent by many young people to both their own grandparents and to “adopted grandparents,” the Dicastery now invites boys and girls from all over the world to send a message to the elderly and to receive in return the gift of their wisdom, #aGiftOfWisdom.

Today, in the difficult circumstances of a Christmas still overshadowed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Dicastery is asking that young people post on social media a memory, a piece of advice, or a “gift of wisdom” they have received from one of the elderly people with whom they have formed a bond in recent months.

Unfortunately, in many cases, because of the health regulations in force, visiting can only take place remotely, via telephone, videocalls, and messaging. But it is possible to participate in this campaign by posting the wise words of grandparents and the elderly on social media using the hashtag #aGiftOfWisdom.

Some of the best posts will be shared on the social media accounts of the Dicastery for Laity, Family, and Life @laityfamilylife.

Catherine Wiley, Founder of the Catholic Grandparents Association, has warmly welcomed this new initiative from the Dicastery and is inviting young people and grandparents themselves to share the gift of wisdom they would offer to young people and to the world at this time. Email us on info@catholicgrandparentsassociation.com or share your gift of wisdom on social media.

ENDS