Sorry this is late being finished. As mentioned in an earlier post, I have been too busy for much blogging for a couple of weeks but did not want to overlook World Youth Day. I was able to catch some of the TV coverage, but did not want to try to post anything about it until I had the time to look at the news articles and texts of addresses and homilies. Anyway, here it is. I hope to get back to regular blogging shortly.
The Vatican's web page on World Youth Day has the texts of the Holy Father's interview on the flight to Sydney, addresses and homilies. KTO French Catholic TV has a page with links to its videos of World Youth Day events, which are available for viewing online. They are the full TV broadcasts, sometimes 2 or 3 hours in length, with French commentary.
Asia News has a page with links to its articles throughout the journey. Catholic News Agency also has a page. John L. Allen, Jr. has a summary of the Pope's words and actions with regard to several issues, including sex abuse, the environment, World Youth Day as an "Evangelical Pilgrimage," and a traditional liturgical example. Cardinal Sean O'Malley had a post last week on World Youth Day titled "Blogging from Down Under: With the Holy Father in Sydney for WYD" and a continuation of it with photos this week, also with detail about his trip to Papua New Guinea after WYD.
Christopher Blosser has a round-up of World Youth Day at Against the Grain.
Before Arriving in Sydney
The Holy Father had a Message for World Youth Day last year dated July 20, 2007, which appears on the web page for this year's World Youth Day. In that message, he reflected on the theme for this year's World Youth Day: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses” (Acts 1:8)." In 2006, the theme was "Spirit of Truth." In 2007, the theme was "Spirit of Love." In 2008, the theme is "the Spirit of Fortitude and Witness that gives us the courage to live according to the Gospel and to proclaim it boldly." In his 2007 message, he reflected on some Bible passages about the Holy Spirit, about the sacraments of Confirmation and the Eucharist, and about mission. He asked, "May Mary, united in prayer with the Apostles in the Upper Room, accompany you throughout these months and obtain for all young Christians a new outpouring of the Holy Spirit to set their hearts on fire."
During an in-flight interview on July 12, 2008, on his way to Sydney, the Holy Father answered questions from the news media. He answered questions about World Youth Day, the future of the Church in Australia, a possible apology in Australia for past clergy sexual abuse, climate change, and the Anglican Communion. Vatican Radio's reports included an article about the interview. Asia News had an article on the beginning of the journey. Zenit provided its own translation.
Sunday, July 13, 2008
The Pope arrived in Sydney on July 13, welcomed by Cardinal Pell. He spent his first few days resting at Kenthurst Study Centre near Sydney, where he had the use of a baby grand piano and the company of a tabby kitten.
In his Message to this year's pilgrims, dated July 4, 2008, he spoke about the year's theme. The message was broadcast to the pilgrims by video after the Holy Father's arrival in Sydney. Asia News has an article about the Holy Father's arrival and the video broadcast. The text included this:
"The Psalmist prays: “when you send forth your Spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the earth” (Ps 104:30). It is my firm belief that young people are called to be instruments of that renewal, communicating to their peers the joy they have experienced through knowing and following Christ, and sharing with others the love that the Spirit pours into their hearts, so that they too will be filled with hope and with thanksgiving for all the good things they have received from God our heavenly Father."
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
World Youth Day opened on July 15. The text of Cardinal Pell's homily for the World Youth Day Opening Mass is provided by Zenit. Australian Broadcasting Corporation ("ABC") has an article about the event. Vatican Radio has audio reports about the opening of World Youth Day and about Cardinal Pell's homily: “Christ’s call is to all who are suffering, not just to Catholics or Christians, but especially to those without religion. Christ is calling you home; to love healing and community”.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
World Youth Day was "in full swing" with prayer, catechesis and song, according to an audio report by Vatican Radio. The first catechesis was given by Cardinal Hart, available from Zenit. Archbishop Chaput gave an address at "Theology on Tap", at an Irish pub in Sydney, also available from Zenit.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
At a welcoming ceremony at the Government House, he gave an address to government officials and others. The text is also provided by Zenit. ABC has an article about the welcome extended by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. Australia's National Website has the text of the welcome address given to the Pope.
The Holy Father then arrived by boat to greet the crowds of youth awaiting him. A video of the Pope's arrival in Sydney is available on KTO French Catholic TV (146 minutes with French commentary). The Vatican has the text of his address to youth at the welcome celebration. Canberra Times reported about his arrival on the MV Sydney 2000, on a "dream winter's day." After a traditional aboriginal welcome at Rose Bay pier, the Holy Father traveled by "boat-a-cade" to be greeted by 150,000 pilgrims in Darling Harbor. Vatican Radio and Asia News have articles. In his address, the Holy Father spoke of his journey to Australia: "For people of your age, however, any flight is an exciting prospect. But for me, this one was somewhat daunting! Yet the views afforded of our planet from the air were truly wondrous." Here is an excerpt from the spiritual message of his address:
"Our hearts and minds are yearning for a vision of life where love endures, where gifts are shared, where unity is built, where freedom finds meaning in truth, and where identity is found in respectful communion. This is the work of the Holy Spirit! This is the hope held out by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is to bear witness to this reality that you were created anew at Baptism and strengthened through the gifts of the Spirit at Confirmation. Let this be the message that you bring from Sydney to the world!"
Friday, July 18, 2008
The Holy Father gave an address to an ecumenical meeting in the Crypt of St. Mary's Cathedral in Sydney. The Vatican, Zenit and Catholic News Agency have the full text of his address, and Vatican Radio has excerpts from it. Father Zuhlsdorf offers explanatory comments, saying that there are a couple of phrases that people might misunderstand. The West Australian and Asia News had news coverage of the morning's events, including a meeting with representatives of other faiths in the Cathedral's Chapter Hall, as well as the meeting in the Crypt with Anglican, Uniting Church (an Australian Protestant denomination), Lutheran, Maronite, Melkite and Assemblies of God churches, as well as representatives of Christian churches in Syria and India. Vatican Radio has an audio news report about the day's events and also has an audio about Fr. Federico Lombardi's description of the meeting with people of other faiths.
In his address to the ecumenical gathering in the Crypt, a key paragraph that drew attention in blogs and news coverage was this one:
"Dear friends in Christ, I think you would agree that the ecumenical movement has reached a critical juncture. To move forward, we must continually ask God to renew our minds with the Holy Spirit (cf. Rom 12:2), who speaks to us through the scriptures and guides us into all truth (cf. 2 Pet 1:20-21; Jn 16:13). We must guard against any temptation to view doctrine as divisive and hence an impediment to the seemingly more pressing and immediate task of improving the world in which we live. In fact, the history of the Church demonstrates that praxis is not only inseparable from, but actually flows out of didache or teaching. The more closely we strive for a deeper understanding of the divine mysteries, the more eloquently our works of charity will speak of God’s bountiful goodness and love towards all. Saint Augustine expressed the nexus between the gift of understanding and the virtue of charity when he wrote that the mind returns to God by love (cf. De Moribus Ecclesiae Catholicae, XII, 21), and that wherever one sees charity, one sees the Trinity (De Trinitate, 8, 8, 12)."
The text of the entire address to members of other faiths is also available on the Vatican website and from Zenit and Catholic News Agency, with excerpts at Vatican Radio. Here is an excerpt from that:
"A harmonious relationship between religion and public life is all the more important at a time when some people have come to consider religion as a cause of division rather than a force for unity. In a world threatened by sinister and indiscriminate forms of violence, the unified voice of religious people urges nations and communities to resolve conflicts through peaceful means and with full regard for human dignity. One of the many ways religion stands at the service of mankind is by offering a vision of the human person that highlights our innate aspiration to live generously, forging bonds of friendship with our neighbours."
Zenit also has the text of the welcome by Rabbi Jeremy Lawrence at the interfaith meeting.
The Holy Father then met with a group of disadvantaged youth. The text of his address is provided by the Vatican, Zenit and Catholic News Agency, with excerpts at Vatican Radio. Vatican Radio also has an audio report of the event. He spoke of choosing life, considering material possessions, the "cult of possessive love" and the "cult of power." Speaking of material things, he said:
"Material possessions, in themselves, are good. We would not survive for long without money, clothing and shelter. We must eat in order to stay alive. Yet if we are greedy, if we refuse to share what we have with the hungry and the poor, then we make our possessions into a false god."
"By contrast," he said, "worship of the one true God means recognizing in him the source of all goodness, entrusting ourselves to him, opening ourselves to the healing power of his grace and obeying his commandments: that is the way to choose life.
The day's events included a re-enactment of the Way of the Cross. KTO has the video (168 minutes with French commentary). Vatican Radio has an audio report on the youth as they took over the streets of Sydney for the event and an audio interview with the people who played Jesus and Mary in the production. The report mentions the efforts made to make sure the texts were not offensive to Jews or others. The Sydney Morning Herald and Adelaide Now reported the three-hour event.
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Beginning Saturday morning, the youth in Sydney made their "pilgrim walk" to Randiwick Racecourse, where they would have an evening vigil and spend the night, and where Sunday's closing Mass would be held. Vatican Radio has an article about their procession through the streets of Sydney to the racetrack, and an audio report with the tales of two pilgrims.
Meanwhile, in Sydney, 3400 people attended a Eucharistic Celebration by the Holy Father with Australian bishops, seminarians and novices, for the dedication of a new altar at St. Mary's Cathedral. The Holy Father surprised some when he paused during the homily to add an apology for clergy sex abuse which did not appear in the advance text previously provided to journalists. The full text, including the apology, is now available at the Vatican website, Zenit and Catholic News Agency. News reports include an article in the Sydney Morning Herald. An audio report from Vatican Radio includes the audio of the Pope's words of apology. Here is part of that text from the homily:
"Here I would like to pause to acknowledge the shame which we have all felt as a result of the sexual abuse of minors by some clergy and religious in this country. Indeed, I am deeply sorry for the pain and suffering the victims have endured, and I assure them that, as their Pastor, I too share in their suffering. These misdeeds, which constitute so grave a betrayal of trust, deserve unequivocal condemnation. They have caused great pain and have damaged the Church’s witness. I ask all of you to support and assist your Bishops, and to work together with them in combating this evil. Victims should receive compassion and care, and those responsible for these evils must be brought to justice. It is an urgent priority to promote a safer and more wholesome environment, especially for young people."
In the evening, the Holy Father spoke at a vigil for the youth. KTO French Catholic TV has a 3-hour video of the prayer vigil for viewing online, with French commentary. Asia News has an article about the vigil, including the presentation of 24 youth who would be confirmed the next day. Catholic News Agency also reported on the youth spending the night outside, with comments from some of the participants. Vatican Radio has a written report with a link to audio at the end, and another audio report about the Pope's address. The youth spent the entire night in the stadium at Randiwick Racecourse, in preparation for the Mass to be held there Sunday morning. The Pope's address at the vigil can be found at the Vatican, Zenit and Catholic News Agency, with excerpts at Vatican Radio.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Asia News reported the Concluding Mass at the racetrack. A full 3-hour video of the Concluding Mass is still available for viewing at KTO (French Catholic TV) with French commentary. Whispers in the Loggia has a report with photos. Vatican Radio has an audio report. Cardinal Pell gave an address at that Mass thanking the Pope for continuing the World Youth Days begun by his predecessor:
"We are profoundly grateful for this decision, indicating that the World Youth Days do not belong to one pope, or even one generation, but are now an ordinary part of the life of the Church. The John Paul II generation -- young and old alike -- is proud to be faithful sons and daughters of Pope Benedict."
The Holy Father's homily is available from the Vatican, Zenit and Catholic News Agency. Returning to the theme of the Holy Spirit's power, he said that the power of the Holy Spirit is the power of God's Life that never ceases to fill the Church with life. It is received "as pure gift." Asking the young people what they would leave to the next generation, he said the Church "needs your faith, your idealism and your generosity, so that she can always be young in the Spirit." He spoke of the importance of prayer in the context of that gift of the power of the Holy Spirit:
"That is why prayer is so important: daily prayer, private prayer in the quiet of our hearts and before the Blessed Sacrament, and liturgical prayer in the heart of the Church. Prayer is pure receptivity to God’s grace, love in action, communion with the Spirit who dwells within us, leading us, through Jesus, in the Church, to our heavenly Father. In the power of his Spirit, Jesus is always present in our hearts, quietly waiting for us to be still with him, to hear his voice, to abide in his love, and to receive “power from on high”, enabling us to be salt and light for our world."
At the recitation of the Angelus, the Pope announced that the next World Youth Day will be in Madrid in 2011. Speaking of the Annunciation and the meaning of the Angelus prayer, he said:
"Dear young people, we too must remain faithful to the “yes” that we have given to the Lord’s offer of friendship. We know that he will never abandon us. We know that he will always sustain us through the gifts of the Spirit. Mary accepted the Lord’s “proposal” in our name. So let us turn to her and ask her to guide us as we struggle to remain faithful to the life-giving relationship that God has established with each one of us. She is our example and our inspiration, she intercedes for us with her Son, and with a mother’s love she shields us from harm."
Monday, July 21, 2008
Early Monday morning, the Pope met with four abuse victims privately, listening to their stories, following a private Mass with them. News.com.au carried the story.
The Pope's farewell address from the airport is also available from the Vatican and Zenit. Articles about his departure include those from Catholic News Agency and the Daily Telegraph (with links to photos from World Youth Day), and an audio report from Vatican Radio.
During his journey home, the Pope thanked journalists for their coverage of the event. An audio of his words is included in a report by Vatican Radio, released on July 22.