500 young pilgrims invited to attend
CARDINAL GEORGE WILL MEET toNIGHT IN ORLAND PARK WITH YOUNG PEOPLE PREPARING TO TRAVEL TO “WORLD YOUTH DAY”
CHICAGO (July 15, 2005) – Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., Archbishop of Chicago, will meet and pray with a representative group of the more than 500 young people who plan to travel to next month’s “World Youth Day” celebration at a special preparatory Mass and question-and-answer session that will begin at 5:30 p.m. tonight at St. Michael Catholic Parish, 14327 Highland Ave., Orland Park.
The 20th Roman Catholic “World Youth Day” celebration will be hosted by His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, and will be held from August 16-21 in Cologne, Germany.
Monday Night Celebration Will Include Music, Discussion, Procession and Mass
Archdiocese of Chicago pilgrims will first assemble tonight at 5:30 p.m. in the St. Michael Parish gym where the nationally-acclaimed Holy Cross/Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish Marimba Band will entertain.
At 6 p.m., Cardinal George will lead a discussion in a question-and-answer format on the World Youth Day theme, “We have come to Worship Him.” After this discussion concludes at approximately 7:15 p.m., the youth and young adults will walk in procession to St. Michael Catholic Church, where a Mass will be celebrated in English, Polish and Spanish.
Mass will Highlight Diversity of Archdiocese of Chicago’s “World Youth Day” Participants
At approximately 7:30 p.m., the Mass will begin with the Youth Choir of St. Terrence
Catholic Parish in Alsip singing the official 2005 World Youth Day song, parts of which will be sung in six languages (German, French, Latin, Italian, Spanish and English). The Mass will be celebrated by Cardinal George and Auxiliary Bishops Gustavo Garcia-Siller, S.Sp.S., and Joseph Perry.
Following Bishop Garcia-Siller’s homily, Cardinal George will bless crosses that will be distributed to each pilgrim. To further emphasize the prayer support pilgrims will receive from their local communities while traveling in Germany, a representative of each local parish sending pilgrims will receive a special blessed candle to be kept lit during the pilgrimage. A reception for those traveling to Cologne and for their families and friends will follow the Mass at 8:30 p.m. in the gym with more entertainment.
Archdiocese of Chicago to be Well-Represented in Germany
According to Archdiocesan Youth Ministry Coordinator Maria Perez-Eraci, the 539 pilgrims scheduled to travel to Germany from the Archdiocese of Chicago are traveling in groups of 12 to 150 and are composed of teens and young adults ranging in age from 13 to 25. These groups represent a variety of parishes, schools, ethnic groups and geographical areas in the Archdiocese of Chicago.
Cardinal George, Auxiliary Bishop Garcia-Siller and Auxiliary Bishop John Manz will also attend the World Youth Day celebration.
While in Cologne, Cardinal George is scheduled to conduct two catechetical sessions for English-speaking young people: at the first, on the morning of Wednesday, August 17, he will address “Searching for truth, the deepest meaning of human existence”; at the second, on the morning of Friday, August 19, he will address “Living in the world as true worshippers of God.” When Pope Benedict XVI meets with young people who will assemble in Cologne, it will be as part of his first trip outside of Italy and the first to his homeland since his election as Pope.