JOHN PAUL II A FATHER AND FRIEND OF THE YOUTH IN THE WORLD
During a ceremony of passing signs of the Worldly Youth’s Days, which took place on the Palm Sunday on 13 April 2014 in Rome on the Square of St. Peter, pope Francis said: - John Paul II, who was an initiator of the Worldly Youth’s Days, is going to become their great patron. In the community of the saints he will still be the father and friend of the youth in the world. A group of the Brazilians gave the Cross of the Worldly Youth’s Days and the icon of Our Lady ‘Salus Populi Romani’ to their friends from Poland. Speaking to young Brazilians and Poles, the Holy Father reminded that passing the Cross of the World Youth’s Days to the youth had taken place 30 years ago, and it was done by blessed John Paul II, asking the young ‘to take it to the whole world, as a sign of love of Lord Jesus towards people’.
On the Square of St. Peter there was a delegation of over 100 young people from Poland. Each diocese was represented by 2 people; a slightly bigger one was the delegation from the archdiocese of Poznań, from which the peregrination of the Cross is going to begin. The signs of the Worldly Youth’s Days are going to visit the dioceses in: Belarus, Lithuania, Latvia, Russia, Ukraine, Moldavia, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.
In the end of the Holy Mass on the Palm Sunday, pope Francis greeted 250 delegates – bishops, priests, monks and laymen – who participated in the meeting devoted to the Worldly Youth’s Days, organized by the Papal Council for the Laymen. – In this way – said the Holy Father – it is the beginning of the process of preparation for another meeting, which will be held in July 2016 in Cracow under the motto ‘Blessed who are merciful, as they will receive mercifulness’.
Moreover, Pope Francis announced that on 15 August in Daejeon, during his pilgrimage to Southern Korea, he is going to meet with the young from Asia gathered at the big continental meeting.
The Palm Sunday has been celebrated as the World Youth’s Day for 29 years. This year the ceremonies has taken place on the diocesan level under the motto: ‘Blessed who are poor in spirit, as the Heavenly Kingdom will belong to them’.