Young People of Poland, You Are “Born for Greater Things!”

Pope Francis greeting Polish youths in Rome

“Be courageous! The world needs your independence of mind, your confident regard of the future, your thirst for truth, goodness and beauty,” said Pope Francis to Poland’s young people.

The Holy Father addressed a Message to Bishop Piotr Libera of Plock, Poland, on the occasion of the 450th anniversary of the death of Saint Stanislaus Kostka (1550-1568), a Jesuit novice. The anniversary coincides today with the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

“May Saint Stanislaus teach you not to be afraid of risk or dreams of true happiness, whose source and guarantee is Jesus Christ,” wrote the Pope, quoting his address at Krakow for the 2016 World Youth Day. “Jesus is the Lord of risk, He is the Lord of the ever ‘further.’    He wants your hands to continue to build today’s world. He wants to build with you.”

The Pontiff gave young people the program of the young Polish Saint’s motto: “From Heaven, may Saint Stanislaus inspire you and his motto inspire you: ‘Ad maiora natus sum’ – ‘I was born for greater things.’”

Born into a great Polish family in 1550 at Rostkow, Stanislaus devoted himself  to classical studies at Vienna beginning in 1564. Invited by the Virgin to enter the Society of Jesus, in order to prevent his father’s opposition, he fled from his home in 1567, walking all over Germany.

Arriving in Rome, he was admitted to the noviciate by Saint Francis Borgia. He died there on August 15, 1568, having reached a high degree of holiness. Benedict XIII canonized him in 1726.