Time for Youth During Passion Sunday: Four Thousand Canadian Youth to go to WYD in Cologne

Thursday, March 17 2005

(CCCB – Ottawa) This Sunday, 20 March, young Catholics from all over the world will be celebrating World Youth Day (WYD), held each year on Passion Sunday. During this coming weekend, many Canadian dioceses will be emphasizing this event through special activities with young people.

Since its creation in 1985 by Pope John Paul II, WYD is celebrated in two forms: annual celebrations at St. Peter’s Square in Rome and the dioceses around the world and, in a more spectacular fashion, international meetings that the Holy Father calls every two or three years, as in Toronto in 2002. This year is also slated for the international celebration, where pilgrims from every continent will meet this summer in Cologne, Germany, 16 – 21 August.

Canada is actively preparing for WYD in Cologne for which close to 4,000 Canadian young people have already registered. As at past international celebrations, few worldwide events assemble as many young people as this WYD: over 1 million in Paris in 1997, over 2 million in Rome in 2000, and over 3 million in Manila in 1995.

Most of the activities will take place in the cities of Cologne, Bonn and Düsseldorf, 16 – 21 August. A large number of pilgrims will also be hosted, 11 – 15 August, by German dioceses, each of which has its own special activities.

In spite of his recent illness, Pope John Paul II still intends on being part of the celebrations.

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Sylvain Salvas
Director, Communications Service
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