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International Gathering of Franciscan Youth on the Occasion of WYD 2011

gifra_gmg24On the occasion of World Youth Day, the Franciscan Youth from around the world gathered in Madrid at the College of Saint Rita from August 12-15, 2011, for its traditional International Meeting. The main topic, “Give Me A Right Faith,” was taken from the prayer of St. Francis before the Crucifix of San Damiano.

After this gathering, about 350 young people of YouFra representing more than 40 countries took part in World Youth Day. There were also many other young people at WYD who came with their own YouFra Dioceses, the Episcopal Conferences of the country of origin, and others who were enrolled in WYD as National Fraternities of YouFra.

The program of Franciscan Youth was very rich. Liturgical celebrations were lived out in a joyful and fraternal spirit, such as, the festival of nations, in which each fraternity introduced itself with song and dance. The presence and encouraging words of Cardinal Carlos Amigo Vallejo during Holy Mass of August 13 were very welcoming. In addition, we listened to the presentations and testimony of five young people about the topic of faith lived out in different ecclesial and social situations. Next, the work done in groups on how we live faith continued with a very creative presentation in the plenary assembly. The pilgrimage to Alcala de Henares, the Holy Mass celebrated by the Provincial Minister José María Jiménez Sainz, OFM, at St. Francis Church, and the meeting with the Poor Clares were moments filled with love, joy and fellowship. Very much welcomed as representative of the Conference of Ministers General of the First Order and TOR was the presence of Michael Higgins, TOR Minister General, who celebrated the Closing Mass of this meeting.

For more information, please visit the following Web page: madrid11.youfra.net.

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