In an in interview on the preparations for World Youth Day, the hosting archbishop, Cardinal Joachim Meisner of Cologne, said the event is a gathering for young people, not for “the people of yesterday” such as dissident theologians Eugen Drewermann or Hans Küng.
In an interview granted to the Bonn newspaper General-Anzeiger, Cardinal Meisner noted that Hans Küng and Eugen Drewermann are not welcome at the event. “The entire event is oriented to be an encounter for young people and not for ‘seniors’,” he said.
“There is nothing for them (Küng and Drewermann) here, as young people are not interested in the silliness they fostered for so long. We don’t need any Drewermann or Küng or anything else stale at WYD,” Cardinal Meisner added.
Both Drewermann and Küng have criticized WYD, calling it “triumphalism,” and a dissident group has hinted it might bring both theologians to a parallel event.
Cardinal Meisner also noted that the gathering in Cologne “will be the first to have the special presence of two Popes, one from above, and the other from here below in the world.” “I desire that all those who arrive here return home happier than when they came, and that we here are all happier and more satisfied afterwards than when we welcomed them in,” he said.