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Old Jul 28, '08, 6:40 am
Agenzia Fides Agenzia Fides is offline
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Default VATICAN - At the Angelus, the Pope recalls World Youth Day, which “was transformed into a new ...

Castel Gandolfo (Agenzia Fides) - “On Monday I returned from Sydney, Australia, the site of the 23rd World Youth Day. I still have this extraordinary occasion, in which I experienced the youthful face of the Church, on my mind and in my heart: it was like a multicolored mosaic, formed by young men and women from every part of the globe, all gathered together in the one faith in Jesus Christ.” These were the opening words of the Holy Father Benedict XVI on Sunday, July 27, prior to the recitation of the Angelus in the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo. Focusing on the fundamental importance of World Youth Day, which was an initiative of John Paul II, the Holy Father affirmed that “these gatherings in fact form the stages of a great pilgrimage across the world, to show how faith in Christ makes us all children of one Father who is in heaven and builders of a civilization of love.”Briefly recalling the various events during the encounter in Sydney, intended to spread “awareness of the Holy Spirit, protagonist of the life of the Church and of each Christian,” Pope Benedict XVI mentioned the catecheses that were given by the Bishops in various languages and which were “moments of reflection and recollection that were indispensable for making the event one that would not remain a mere external manifestation.” He also mentioned the evening Vigil that was “a choral invocation of the Holy Spirit” and the Closing Mass on Sunday, where he administered the sacrament of Confirmation to 24 young people from different continents, inviting all present to renew their baptismal vows. He said: “In this way World Youth Day was transformed into a new Pentecost, from which the mission of the young people, called to be apostles to their contemporaries, was relaunched. They are following in the footsteps of many young saints and blessed, in particular Blessed Piergiorgio Frassati, whose relics, brought to the cathedral of Sydney, were venerated by an uninterrupted pilgrimage of young people.”Benedict XVI then expressed his gratitude to the Australian Bishops “for the extensive preparatory work and for the cordial welcome,” the Australian civil authorities “for their precious collaboration,” and “all those, in every part of the world, who prayed for this event, assuring its success.” “May the Virgin Mary bestow the most beautiful graces on everyone,” he concluded, entrusting his time of rest in Bressanone in the mountains of Alto Adige, as well to the Blessed Mother. After reciting the Angelus, and following the greetings in various languages, the Pope greeted all those who are on vacation, and remembered all those who cannot take a time of rest: “I greet all those who are vacationing now, wishing them serene days of profitable physical and spiritual leisure. However, I do not forget those who cannot benefit from a time of rest and vacation: my thoughts turn to the sick in hospitals and nursing homes, to those in prison, to the elderly, to those who are alone, and those who are passing the summer in the heat of the city. To all of you I assure my affectionate nearness and a remembrance in my prayer.” (SL) (Agenzia Fides 28/7/2008)

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