Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney hopes WYD will have similar impact as 1993 Denver meeting

Rome, Italy, Aug 27, 2007 / 11:14 am (CNA) .- Auxiliary Bishop Anthony Fisher of Sydney said recently, “Information from Denver suggests that five to ten years after the WYD that took place in that city, the event continued to influence those who participated.  We hope for this type of long-term evangelization.”

Bishop Fisher, who is General Coordinator for WYD Sydney 2008, said he hoped the Holy Spirit would give young people “direction, meaning, and hope for the future.”  “There is great hope in this World Youth Day.  We hope it offers young people the chance to encounter Christ, to experience the power of God in their lives,” he added.

Bishop Fisher also mentioned that registration for the event has been “notable.”  “We have received many more than what we expected at this point,” he said, and therefore “we are very happy and sure that many people from all over the world will participate.”

He noted as well that the pilgrimage of the WYD Cross “is having a great impact in Australia.”  “Right now it is in the northern part of the country, in the tropical area of Brisbane.  In Toowoomba, for example, where there are three million young people, the bishop has told me that when the Cross arrived, the largest ecclesial gathering in the history of that rural diocese took place,” he said.

“There is also a certain impact on people who are estranged from the Church or are indecisive and who come to see what’s going on and end up staying at the event,” the bishop added.