12 April 2017
The WYD cross is passed by the young people from Poland to those of Panama
Conclusion of the meeting on WYD organized in collaboration with the Synod of Bishops
Bittersweet is the word that best describes the Palm Sunday celebration in St. Peter’s Square, on April 9th, when Pope Francis opened Holy Week with the Mass of the Lord’s Passion. This celebration is “bittersweet” because “it is joyful and sorrowful at the same time.” It makes us relive the disciples’ unexpected celebration of the Lord’s entrance into Jerusalem, where he is acclaimed as king, but also the sorrowful way to his Passion and death.
This bittersweetness, this joy and sorrow, filled St. Peter's Square, where many young people and delegates were gathered for the conclusion of the meeting “From Krakow to Panama. The Synod on the way with young people,” which ended with this celebration. This event was greatly appreciated for the way in which it was realized, for the young people involved in cooperation with the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops, and for the reports in the media. On Sunday morning, the hashtag #Krakow2Panama, launched by the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life for the meeting, was in 6th place among the most popular in Poland.
The bittersweet character of the celebration in St. Peter's Square also became visible through the young people who follow Jesus and, like him, commit themselves. Yet, the bitterness and suffering in the story of the Passion of the Lord was made all the more vivid at the Angelus, in Pope Francis’ prayer for the victims of the recent bombing in Stockholm and for the those killed just a few hours earlier in Egypt.
In the meanwhile, the path of the young advances, with the eyes of the Church on them and Her ear attentively listening to their voices, during this time of preparation for the 2018 Synod of Bishop on “Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment,” an event that also sets the tone for the preparation of the next WYD. At the end of the Mass, young people from Krakow entrusted the WYD cross, on its pilgrim throughout the continents together with the image of Maria Salus Populi Romani, to young people from Panama, while the choir sang: “Our glory is the cross of Christ, in it is victory!” In the second half of this year, it will begin its journey among the young in Central America.