World Youth Day 2002: Canada’s Dioceses Begin Preparations to Welcome the World

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(CCCB – Toronto) Youth ministry representatives from dioceses across Canada met in Toronto last week to begin the planning for World Youth Day 2002, which will be held in Canada’s dioceses and in Toronto from July 18-28, 2002.

The national forum attracted 148 delegates from 71 Canadian dioceses February 22-24 in what is the first gathering ever of those involved in youth ministry from all regions across the country. The forum was hosted by the World Youth Day 2002 national committee established by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) to organize WYD 2002 that will see hundreds of thousands of young people from around the globe come to Canada at the invitation of Pope John Paul II. With less than 18 months before WYD 2002, forum participants spent time studying the ground work already laid out by the national committee and looking at the preparations needed to welcome the more than half million young pilgrims expected from around the world. They examined the implications of the event from community and pastoral points of view as well as the implications for housing, transportation, communications, event coordination, financing and the need for volunteers.

The national committee spent a great deal of time at the forum discussing the days in the dioceses, which is an important but separate WYD 2002 element from the Toronto activities. While Toronto will be the host to larger rallies and other major events from July 23-28, 2002, the young pilgrims coming to Canada will first be hosted in dioceses across the country from July 18-22 where they will be able to acquaint themselves with the Church in different parts of Canada. The days in the dioceses will also entail a major logistical challenge for diocesan organizers who take on complete responsibility for local activities and housing. The national committee chose the forum to unveil the WYD 2002 logo in the presence of federal, provincial and municipal representatives. The brightly coloured logo shows a cross symbolizing the presence of Jesus Christ. The shape of the cross is similar to the crozier or pastoral staff used by Pope John Paul II, who plans to attend WYD 2002. There is a yellow circle at the centre representing the youth who will attend WYD from around the globe. The blue section at the top represents the oceans and waters of Canada. The red maple leaf at the bottom represents Canada that will host the event.

The national director for WYD 2002, Rev. Thomas Rosica, CSB, expressed his delight at the overwhelming positive response that national organizers received from the diocesan representatives. “The obvious goodwill and spirit of cooperation that was present was extraordinary,” Father Rosica said. “The forum has given birth to a new and unique form of pastoral collaboration on the national level. I know that the experience of the past weekend is one of the first graces and blessings that World Youth Day brings to the Church in Canada."

WYD 2002 Episcopal Committee members Bishop James Wingle, Bishop Anthony Meagher (chairman) and Bishop François Lapierre, PMÉ, at WYD logo unveiling.

For More information Contact:
Deacon William Kokesch
Director, Communications Service


Last Updated on Thursday, May 25 2006  
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