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Krakow to host World Youth Day 2016

PR dla Zagranicy
Nick Hodge 29.07.2013 08:58
Pope Francis has announced that World Youth Day in 2016 will be hosted in Krakow, southern Poland.

Young Polish Catholics celebrate in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday. Photo: EPA/Sebastiao Moreia

The pontiff broke the news on Sunday before a crowd of some 3 million faithful at the closing ceremony of this year's World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

“Dear young friends, we have an appointment in Krakow, Poland for the next World Youth Day in 2016,” he declared to rapturous applause on Rio's Copacabana beach, as cited by the Polish Press Agency (PAP).

Scores of young Poles in the crowds celebrated on hearing the news.

Pope Francis in Rio, Sunday: EPA/Luca Zennaro

Late pontiff Pope John Paul II had served as Archbishop of Krakow, and his former secretary, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz – current Archbishop of Krakow – was among the first to welcome the news.

“We express our gratitude to the Holy Father for this decision,” he noted in a statement released through news agency AFP.

“We look forward to your coming and to the arrival of so many of our young friends with great anticipation and joy.”

Meanwhile, Joanna Trzaska-Wieczorek, a spokesperson for President Bronislaw Komorowski, told Polish Radio of the president's delight on hearing the news.

“President Bronislaw Komorowski personally invited the Holy Father Francis to Poland after his inaugural mass, so it was with great joy that he greeted the fact that this visit will happen in 2016,” she said.

World Youth Day has been an official Roman Catholic event since 2016. (nh)

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