January 28, 2016, 8:46p.m. – CEBU CITY – “SHUN the culture of materialism.”

This was the message of Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Robert Barron to youth participants at a catechesis session of the 51st International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) at Hoops Dome in Lapu-Lapu City Thursday.

In his catechesis titled after the IEC theme, “Christ in the Youth, Our Hope of Glory,” Barron warned against materialism and consumerism, saying people today were prioritizing the wrong things instead of choosing Christ to be “the center of their life.”

“If Christ is not the center of your life, then you become split [or] divided. Your mind goes this way [and] your body goes that way. You’re at war with yourself,” Barron said.

The former Chicago pastor described  “money, pleasure, power and honor ” as “altars to which people today are worshiping and dancing around.”

“We are worshiping the wrong way. We are worshiping the wrong gods,” Barron said.

Barron told the crowd of more than 6,000 youth to stop their “selfish-thinking” and look for the “bigger picture.” He also encouraged them to surrender to the Holy Spirit to “find joy.”

“There’s a power already at work in you. Let God surge through you and you will find joy,” Barron said.

Last Tuesday, the 56 year-old Barron, founder of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries, spoke in a press conference about the rising secularism in many countries, particularly in the United States, which has more than 78 million Catholics. John Gabriel M. Agcaoili


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