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KUALA LUMPUR – Some 700 young people left Malaysia and Singapore for World Youth Day, which runs until Sunday (31 July) in Krakow (Poland). More than 400 Malaysians and 200 Singaporeans registered for the event in their respective diocesan offices and parish groups. About a hundred travelled privately.Mgr Julian Leow Beng Kim,
Mgr Julian Leow Beng Kim, Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur, led those who left on 22 July for Warsaw, the Polish capital, where Pope Francis is scheduled to arrive today.” Archbishop Leow said he would walk with the youth, share their accommodation and food and forgo the special treatment accorded to him by organisers,” an official at his diocese said.
In addition to young people, some older people are also travelling to Krakow. Adeline, for example, is 50. “This is my third World Youth Day event,” she said, and “each pilgrimage has further strengthened my faith and renewed me”. A single mother has arranged for her two children to go on the pilgrimage to strengthen their faith. “It is the least I can do,” she said. A childless couple in their 30s, who celebrated their fifth marriage anniversary recently, said they hope they will be blessed. “What motivates me? We want a child; maybe this time he will bless us,” said the husband.
Steven, a catechist acting as a chaperon, said the event is a good reminder on what life is really about.”We must all learn that it is not about money, status, popularity, or any other idols in the world,” he explained. “We want to be open to the life that God wants to give us and offer our lives for God. World Youth Day is a testimony of affirmation to the truth of what the church preaches to the nations,” he added.”It will be a chance for them (youth) to meet people of their age from all parts of the world and thus be able to share their faith experiences to their mutual edification.”- Asia News