I GOT this information from a columnist of the UK magazine The Tablet of September 30, 2017.

On the second Thursday in September, Australians are encouraged to contact someone they know who might be going through a difficult patch and ask: “Are you OK?” The simplicity of the challenge combined with the complexity of our contemporary mental-health culture has struck a chord. R U OK? Has taken off, and not just on one day of the year.

Last year, as the promotion for the campaign ramped up, I called two friends, both aged under 30, who I knew were struggling, one with a bitter divorce, the other with ill health. The friend battling cancer was in better spirits and had good family support. Within seconds of asking my friend going through a difficult divorce if he was OK, he burst into tears and sobbed. Only the thought of leaving his children fatherless was stopping him from ending his life. Although it was not a bad start, my friend needed more than a phone call. He needed a lot of help.

It is a shocking reality that the greatest cause of death in young people under 30 in the developed world is not the abuse of drugs or alcohol or misadventure, but suicide. Young adults living in the countries with the highest standards of living and with the greatest educational opportunities, in theory, should have the most to live for. Yet, in a generation that is sometimes described as the most socially connected ever, the feeling of isolation appears like a pandemic. Many contemporary young people are not OK.

The reasons for this poor state of mental health, the increase in suicide (or "self-delivery," as suicide is now sometimes called) and attempted suicide, are many and complex. However, as Hugh Mackay argues in The Good Life, happiness has become an industry that is selling all of us a lie. Why are we setting our children up for such failure? Why don’t Christian parents say: “I want my children to be faithful, hopeful, loving, just and good .” Living those virtues will not always lead to happiness – but it will bring something more valuable and precious, Joy.

Joy is one of the great themes in the teaching of Pope Francis. Christian joy is not the same as happiness. Christian joy celebrates that we know where we have come from, why we are here and where we are going. It moves away from trying to find the easy side of life to confronting the inevitable tough moments in our lives, and to embracing suffering as an inescapable reality of the human condition. It seeks to be resilient in the face of adversity by embodying Jesus’ call to love God and our neighbor as we love ourselves. And it tells us that we are not meant to love isolated lives like “rocks and islands”, as the Simon and Garfunkel song has it. There was a good reason why Jesus sent the disciples out in twos.

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