“What does this fraSt Maria Goretti.jpggile but christianly mature girl say to today’s young people, through her life and above all through her heroic death?” Pope John Paul II asked on her feast day in 2003.

The Pope went on to say: “Marietta, as she was lovingly called, reminds the youth of the third millennium that true happiness demands courage and a spirit of sacrifice, refusing every compromise with evil and having the disposition to pay personally, even with death, faithful to God and his commandments. How timely this message is.

Today, pleasure, selfishness and directly immoral actions are often exalted in the name of the false ideals of liberty and happiness. It is essential to reaffirm clearly that purity of heart and of body go together, because chastity ‘is the custodian’ of authentic love.”