Sunday, August 21, 2005

1.1 million...

...was apparently the final tally for the # of attendees at the concluding Mass for World Youth Day. By all accounts it was a very successful event (albeit with some logistical snafus). We can give thanks that many youth found it to be a very edifying time - lines were long for the sacrament of reconciliation as well as for entry into the Eucharistic adoration chapels.

Pope Benedict had some excellent reflections in his homily. An excerpt:
Let us return once more to the Last Supper. The new element to emerge here was the deeper meaning given to Israel’s ancient prayer of blessing, which from that point on became the word of transformation, enabling us to participate in the “hour” of Christ. Jesus did not instruct us to repeat the Passover meal, which in any event, given that it is an anniversary, is not repeatable at will. He instructed us to enter into his “hour”. We enter into it through the sacred power of the words of consecration – a transformation brought about through the prayer of praise which places us in continuity with Israel and the whole of salvation history, and at the same time ushers in the new, to which the older prayer at its deepest level was pointing. The new prayer – which the Church calls the “Eucharistic Prayer” – brings the Eucharist into being.
And Tim Drake has been doing a wonderful job of reporting from the ground. Check out his site if you haven't already!


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