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World Youth Day 2011 Madrid

The Pope will be visiting Madrid

In celebration for the up coming World Youth Day the Pope will be visiting Madrid for a length of 4days. World Youth Day celebration takes place in the Spanish Capital from the 16-21 August.

In 1985 Pope John Paul II started this tradition to promote Catholicism among younger generations. A large red, orange and yellow banner has been designed especially for this gathering of youth, to welcome visitors to the celebrations.

Locals are being encouraged to decorate their balcony and windows with these papal flags, which are being sold by a charitable organization to help church ministries in poor dioceses and dioceses that are suffering persecution.

The Pope will be arriving by plane from Ciampino Airport on Thursday the 18th August where he will have a welcoming ceremony at the International Airport of Madrid Barajas

with an address of the holy father and later in the day he will have another welcoming ceremony with the young people. Over the popes time in Madrid he will be meeting a lot of important people including the King and Queen of Spain plus the President of the government. This trip will be focus of the youth though with more than 420,500 registered individuals coming from 193 countries to join the festivals. It is estimated that 86,00 Italians will be going to the celebrations, 82,000 Spanish, almost 50,000 French, more than 26,000 Americans, 15,600 Germans and also 2,100 Russians and some 300 Chinese.

There is great excitement in the youth that will be participating in this event but also a little resentment from the less interested people of Madrid as 275 Madrid schools have been instructed to remain open for the Pope Benedicts XVI's visit, leaving many without their traditional August holidays.

The Spanish government is considering this event to be one of considerable public interest which is why it has ordered many of these public buildings to remain open for this period of time.

Another thing that the government has decided on is that, police officers, civil protection service agents and ambulance technicians will not be allowed to take vacations during the pope's visit.

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