Members of the Archdiocese of Baltimore World Youth Day delegation will be honored at a special Mass on Friday, August 12th at 11 am at St. Pius X Church in Towson. The Mass will be celebrated by Fr. John Williamson, associate pastor of Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, and will include the procession of the youth pilgrimage cross, which is a symbol of unity among Catholic youth, and conclude with a blessing for their protection and guidance. The Mass will be followed by a picnic in the parish courtyard. St. Pius X and Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, who are co-hosting the sendoff, are sending 12 of the 134 young people and youth ministers to World Youth Day from the Archdiocese of Baltimore delegation, which takes place August 16-21. Following the Mass and picnic, members of the delegation will depart for Dulles International Airport, where they will depart for Germany. St. Pius is located at York and Overbrook Roads.
Also on Friday, August 12, St. Mark Catholic Church in Catonsville will host a prayer service at 1 p.m. for their parishioners attending World Youth Day. Open to family and friends, the prayer service will provide an opportunity for the group of young travelers to come together to pray guidance prior to the journey abroad. St. Mark is sending 12 young adults to take part in the 2005 World Youth Day celebration. St. Mark is located at 27 Melvin Avenue.
While in Germany they will experience 12 days of prayer and self-reflection (led by Pope Benedict XVI), historical sightseeing, and the native Bavarian culture.
First started in 1985, World Youth Day is “a festival of encounter and solidarity”. Youth between the ages of 16 and 30 gather together from all over the world to strengthen faith and establish identity amongst the Church through prayer, worship, and discussion. The event has been recognized as instrumental to the future of the faith as the next generation of church leaders gathers to share ideas and wrestle with church issues. World Youth Day 05’ will be the first youth celebration for the newly elected Holy Father and will be an important opportunity for youth to identify with the Church’s new figurehead.
To read about the group’s experiences and to see photographs from Germany, visit the Archdiocese of Baltimore’s World Youth Day ’05 section on its web site, www.archbalt.org/wyd2005/.