Pope Benedict XVI cut short a speech to pilgrims at World Youth Day in Madrid, Spain, as prayers for rain were answered on Saturday. Especially hot and humid temperatures had created difficult conditions for more than 1.5 million pilgrims who gathered to see the Pope during his visit to Madrid. "With this rain, the Lord sends us many blessings," Pope Benedict said to the crowd.
Faced with human suffering, God expects youth to give the best of themselves, Benedict XVI told World Youth Day participants at the end of the Way of the Cross service on Friday evening.
Benedict XVI reflected on being a young professor in the wake of World War II in Germany when he addressed a gathering of professors in Madrid as part of the events of World Youth Day.
The archbishop of Madrid welcomed Benedict XVI to his city Thursday noting that the young people filling the streets notably "have a deep sense of their purpose in life."
A smiling, waving Benedict XVI entered Madrid on Thursday amid the cheers of thousands of youth and cries of "welcome," as he stepped through the Alcala Gate, one of the great symbols of the WYD host city. For the leader of the universal Church, the steps were charged with meaning.
Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela of Madrid, Spain recalled that Pope Benedict XVI was “emotionally moved many times, almost to tears,” during World Youth Day 2011. The Cardinal said that the Holy Father was especially touched by the theatrical presentation of the Stations of the Cross, which he had initially not planned to attend.
Arturo Fernandez, the president of Madrid’s House of Commerce said Aug. 22 that hotels, transportation services and businesses in the Spanish capital took in nearly $230 million during World Youth Day. During the WYD week, protestors in Spain claimed that the event was being run on tax payers money - an objective that was clearly misguided. Visit this article to read more.
Cardinal George Pell, Archbishop of Sydney, delivered an inspiring address on the truths of the Catholic Faith, the Holy Trinity and the existence of God, during his WYD Catechesis session in Madrid. Listen to Cardinal Pell challenge the young people present to show God that there is still faith on earth!
Watch this video re-live some of the highlights from the incredible World Youth Day week from 16-21 August in Madrid, Spain!
Pope Benedict XVI left Spain on the evening of August 21, after giving a challenge to the million-plus young people who came to World Youth Day in Madrid over the past six days. “Now I ask you to spread throughout the world the profound and joyful experience of faith which you had here in this noble country,” said the Pope, on the tarmac at Madrid’s Barajas Airport.
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