Madrid Archdiocese Readies for Event
Participants planning to attend the 2011 World Youth Day in Madrid are urged to begin preparing now in prayer, sacramental growth and witnessing to the faith. This was part of the pastoral plan for the Madrid Archdiocese for this year, which will culminate in the youth day next year.
Ángel Matesanz, who is in charge of the youth day's pastoral preparation, pointed out that the objective of the plan is to "strengthen our adherence to Jesus Christ and our commitment to the proclamation of the Gospel."
Metasanz also pointed out the importance of prayer in a missionary ambit: "We must allow ourselves to be seduced by Jesus Christ and become his collaborators."
Gregorio Roldán, secretary general of the event organizing committee, as well as the director of the archdiocese's youth pastoral care, indicated that "this year the objectives of the pastoral plan have a greater projection because of the reception of young people from all over the world during World Youth Day."
"Young people are the principal protagonists," he affirmed.
Roldán said that the August event will give impulse to "the evangelization of society; it will be a testimony in a broken society of a people that is articulated around Jesus Christ."
Prayer and action
The plan's lines of action are summarized in three main areas: to grow in knowledge of Jesus Christ, to foment prayer and participation in the sacraments, and to witness the faith in word and action.
The plan includes distributing quarterly material, such as two guides, one pedagogic and the other methodological, and guidelines for pastoral work.
The plan is inspired in the theme of the youth day: "Planted and Built up in Jesus Christ, Firm in the Faith". This verse from the letter of St. Paul was elaborated on by Benedict XVI in his recently published message for the upcoming World Youth Day.
In his message, the Pope pointed out that "the quality of our meeting will depend above all on our spiritual preparation, our prayer, our common hearing of the word of God and our mutual support."
He encouraged young people to address a personal challenge: "Begin and cultivate a personal dialogue with Jesus Christ, speak with him in prayer, trust him, he will never betray you."
The preparation for Madrid's World Youth Day began in 2008, shortly after the previous one ended in Sydney, Australia.