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Friday, 25 April 2014
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World Youth Day Cross Begins Its Pilgrimage To Madrid 2011

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Following this morning's Mass and before praying the Angelus, a brief ceremony took place during which a group of young Australians handed the World Youth Day cross and icon to a group of Spanish youth.


Turning then to the 150 delegates (bishops, priests and lay people) who have been participating in an international meeting on World Youth Days organised by the Pontifical Council for the Laity, the Pope noted: "Thus begin the preparations for the next world gathering of young people, which will take place in 2011 in Madrid, Spain, and for which I have already indicated the theme: 'Rooted and built in Christ, established in the faith' (Col 2, 7).

"As is traditional", he added, "the young Australians will soon consign the World Youth Day cross to young Spaniards, the 'pilgrim cross' which carries the message of Christ's love to all the young people of the world. This handing-over ceremony has a highly symbolic value with which we express our immense gratitude to God for the gifts received at the great meeting of Sydney, and for those He will grant us at the gathering in Madrid".

The Holy Father concluded his remarks by noting how tomorrow the WYD cross, accompanied by the icon of the Virgin Mary, will depart for the Spanish capital where it will be present at the Good Friday procession. It will them begin a long pilgrimage across the dioceses of Spain, returning to Madrid for summer 2011. "May this cross and this icon of Mary be for everyone a sign of the invincible love of Christ and of His - and our - Mother!"