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We can all benefit from youthful enthusiasm in our Faith

This week's SCO editorial.

Scotland will be well represented among the two million strong group gathering at the world’s largest youth event, with quite a few Saltires aloft in the sea of flags that will no doubt include the Vatican colours. When seen in those terms, the magnitude of World Youth Day 2011 Madrid this month is really driven home.

Some of the young Scots travelling to Madrid for events between August 16 and 21 will be celebrating Mass with the Holy Father for the second time in a year, following the Papal Visit to Scotland last September. Others, who did not attend Mass at Bellahouston Park last year, will be making up for lost time strong in their determination not to let another such opportunity slip through their fingers. While WYD takes place annually at diocesan level, youth Catholics look forward to the large scale gatherings with the Pope every two to three years.

Those who have attended previous World Youth Days recall the experience as one that touches them deeply, renews their Faith and stays with them for a lifetime. We can only hope that pilgrims this year will be as moved.

On the night of August 20 at World Youth Day Pope Benedict XVI will consecrate all the youth of the world to the visible symbol of Christ’s love, the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

“It is from Jesus’ heart, pierced on the cross, that this divine life streamed forth,” Pope Benedict XVI said in his World Youth Day message in preparation for the event. “The young are the hope for the future of the Church and of humanity. By carrying out this consecration we are saying that ‘only he can free the world from evil and make grow the kingdom of justice, peace and love that we all aspire to.’”

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