Last Sunday 18th September, whilst we Brits celebrated the first anniversary of Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to the UK, Brazil was unveiling a huge party.
An open air mass with more than 100,000 young people welcomed the Icons in Campo de Marte located north of Sao Paulo and it was celebrated by its archbishop, Cardinal Odilo Pedro Scherer who said ‘The church has faith in the young people, who have a generous heart and a desire to build a better world for the next generations’.
The reception of the Icons on Sunday can be better described as a dry run for WYD. It not only ran for 12 hours (9am-9pm) but also included an area for confessions, chapel for adoration, videos about the history of WYDs including Madrid, testimonies and many musical presentations.
If you want to see a video of the procession of the cross and the excitement of the young Brazilians click here watch?v=WVClJXFGrXE&feature=player_embedded
The WYD Icons will be touring most of Brazil from now until December 2012, when they leave the country to visit Chile, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay. They then return to the south of Brazil and finally arrive back in April 2013 in Rio de Janeiro.
The theme for the next World Youth Day 2013 in Rio de Janeiro is “Go and make disciples of all nations” (Mt 28:19). Whilst next year’s theme for World Youth Day, to be celebrated by local Churches is “Always be joyful in the Lord!” (Phil 4:4).
Finally, take a look at this video where people are singing and venerating the cross, Brazilian style:watch?feature=player_embedded&v=SBuvZqaqpHg