Bishop Denis Nulty, chair of the Bishops’ Council for Marriage and the Family, has welcomed the announcement of the theme chosen by Pope Francis for the second World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly on Sunday 24 July. The theme, which is taken from Psalms 92:15, is ‘In old age they will still bear fruit’.

Expanding on the theme in a series of tweets, the Holy Father said, “I have chosen this theme for the Second World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly, to be held on 24 July 2022, to promote dialogue among the generations, especially between grandparents and grandchildren.

“It is very important to bring together the wisdom of the elderly and the enthusiasm of the young. The encounter between grandparents and grandchildren is key, especially in this moment of economic and social crisis that humanity is undergoing.

Pope Francis continued, “The elderly should be cared for like a treasure of humanity: they are our wisdom, our memory. It is crucial that grandchildren remain close to their grandparents, who are like roots from which they draw the sap of human and spiritual values.”

Commenting on the announcement, Bishop Denis Nulty, said, “It is wonderful that Pope Francis has announced the second World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly for 24 July. Throughout his papacy Pope Francis has reminded us to value the many gifts of grandparents and the elderly.  Not only are our young people called to be present in the lives of older people, but so too grandparents and elders have a mission to encourage young people on their faith journey.  Our little domestic churches are always enriched by the inclusion of grandparents and elders and this annual day of celebration in our Church for Grandparents and Elders is a really positive initiative by Pope Francis. The Pope himself had a very close relationship to his own Grandmother Rosa and so he understands that the encounter between grandparents and grandchildren is key, especially, as he reminds us, at this moment of economic and social change as we move out of the last two years of the pandemic.”

Parish resources for the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly will be available closer to the date from both the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life and from the Council for Marriage and the Family.

Bishop Nulty is Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin and Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Ossory.

ENDS