WYD congratulates Fukushima heroes for winning humanitarian award


The organizers of World Youth Day 2011, who were finalists for this year’s Prince of Asturias Award in Spain, have congratulated the winners of the prize, the Heroes of Fukushima.

World Youth Day organizers said Sept. 7 that the Heroes of Fukushima are examples of what Benedict XVI was speaking about in Madrid when he said, “Our society, in which the inestimable dignity of life, of each life, is too often questioned, needs you: you make a decisive contribution to building the civilization of love.”

The Prince of Asturias Award recognizes initiatives “that contribute in an exemplary and relevant way to understanding and to peaceful coexistence among mankind.”

Auxiliary Bishop Cesar Franco, the general coordinator of World Youth Day 2011, expressed gratitude for the more than 10,000 votes to award the Prince of Asturias Prize to the youth event.

“To have been nominated for an award that exemplifies the best values of humanity was an honor. That World Youth Day Madrid was considered is itself an award,” he said.

The Heroes of Fukushima are the group of men and women who worked to mitigate the nuclear catastrophe caused by the 9.0 earthquake and the tsunami that stuck Japan on March 11.

“This group of people represents the highest the values of humanity in their efforts to prevent the spreading of the devastating effects of the nuclear disaster caused by the tsunami that struck Japan, by setting aside the grave consequences that this decision would have upon their lives,” the jury for the prize said.

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