Six-thousand young Germans will participate in WYD, according to Sabine Wißdorf, head of the delegation of the German Bishops Conference in Sydney. The large number of German travelers, he continued, “is also evidence of the fact the 2005 World Youth Day of Cologne left its mark.”
Bishop Franz-Josef Bode, leader of the Pastoral Youth Commission of the German Bishops Conference, commented on the fact that the group is composed largely of people aged 25-35. This is a group, he explained, “that the Church usually finds it hard to reach out to.”
He also noted the benefit the journey would have for the German youth. The journey to Sydney will be “a challenge to discuss the contents of Christian faith with young people from different countries and cultures,” the prelate said as the group prepared to leave for Australia.
Traveling with the bishops will also be Archbishop of Munich Reinhard Marx, and Archbishop of Cologne, Cardinal Joachim Meisner.