This may have been the hardest interview to get at World Youth Day, and that’s including Pope Francis. Sister Cristina, who is famous around the world for winning Italy’s The Voice, was on the stage and off again in less than 10 minutes at the Halleluya Festival in Krakow. Cecilia was there and we were given the chance to pull her aside for an exclusive interview.
Sister Cristina, what moves you to every day live in a reality outside your own as a sister?
Living in a reality outside my own is nothing other than a mission. It it the response to this invitation of Pope Francis to go out, to have courage, to find and meet others with the gifts God has given me. So I sing and in doing so I give others this gift.
How do you manage to balance religious life with all the commitments you have now?
It’s not difficult. My life in community is normal. We wake up at 6 to pray and then some of us go off to teach and others to other apostolates. I have the gift and the grace of evangelizing, which happens to brings me to other parts of the world. For me this is a mission, so there’s no double life. I have only one life and I manage to harmonize all these commitments also thanks to the support of the community and my sisters that support and accompany me, always letting me feel their support in the communal life I have chosen to live.
Putting your gifts at the service of others as you have done is a grace and a gesture of mercy. What would you like to add to this message to the young people here listening to you?
Mercy is an act that opens the path to love. Putting your gifts to service is nothing other than the act of serving others and thus opening ourselves to love. Yes, giving of yourself to others is an act of mercy! To the young people I say, Do not be afraid to love! Love also when it is difficult. We have to deny ourselves so many times, make ourselves smaller as pride wants to prevail, but don’t ever give up! Love always! Dream always! If a young person does not dream, there is something wrong. Dream regardless of the obstacles life presents, dream always! Always look to heaven!
Mirticeli Dias, Cecilia Special Correspondent in Krakow