Students back Pell against "whingers"
Pledging its volunteer support for the event, the Australian Catholic Students Association have called critics of the financial cost of World Youth Day 2008 in Sydney "whingers" and "scrooges".
The national body (ACSA), which represents Catholic tertiary students, responded instantly to Cardinal Pell's statement in Cologne about the task of Sydney's World Youth Day being enormous, slamming those questioning the financial cost of the event.
President Daniel Hill said: "I've already received phone calls this morning from university students enthusiastic to volunteer. The scrooges and the whingers will be shown up for their negativity and become irrelevant as young people across Australia embrace World Youth Day, Sydney, 2008 and the youth of the world prepares to come in their thousands."
ACSA is already looking at the long-term benefits for the whole of the Catholic Church in Australia.
"There is no question that this will bring many of those young Catholics who have stopped going to Church back to the faith," said secretary Joanna Hayes.
The statement said that World Youth Day encourages young people to "search for their vocation".
"People are encouraged throughout the event to search for their vocation and many will be called to lead a celibate, religious life such as the Priesthood. This will be a breath of fresh air for dioceses struggling to cope with the current priest shortages."
Meanwhile The Age today quotes a report from Online Catholics that plans to have Mel Gibson organise a street parade version of his movie The Passion of The Christ in Sydney are facing a backlash. The International Council of Christians and Jews has said it would drop plans to hold its annual conference in Sydney in 2007 if Gibson's parade goes ahead.
The row is part of a rift between conservatives and progressives in the church's culture war about who holds the legacy to the Vatican Council in the 1960s, which was held to bring the church into the modern world.
The international council's president, Professor John Pawlikowski, says the invitation to Gibson is a serious issue both for Christian-Jewish relations and "the ever escalating crisis regarding Vatican II within contemporary Catholicism".
Professor Pawlikowski is professor of social ethics at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago and a leading critic of Gibson's controversial movie.
National Student Body hits back at questions over financial cost of World Youth Day Sydney (Australian Catholic Students Association 23/8/05)
Gibson's parade stirs passions (The Age 24/8/05)
LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Archdiocese of Sydney | World Youth Day
World Youth Day - Australia
World Youth Day - International
Organisers ponder logistics of Sydney WYD (CathNews 23/8/05)
It's official - WYD 2008 winner is Sydney! (CathNews 22/8/05)
PM's message advances WYD Australia rumours (CathNews 18/8/05)
Sydney WYD champagne corks await word from Pope (CathNews 2/8/05)
Vatican journo claims 2008 WYD 'winner is Sydney' (CathNews 1/8/05)
Pell leads bid for Sydney World Youth Day (CathNews 5/7/05)
Pell lobbies for World Youth Day Sydney 2008 (CathNews 30/3/04)
Vatican rebuff for Sydney's "premature" 2007 World Youth Day bid (CathNews 23/2/04)
Bishops back Sydney bid for World Youth Day 2007 (CathNews 1/12/03)
Sydney's bid to host WYD 2007 gets boost (CathNews 8/1/04)
Sydney, Australia to host 2008 World Youth Day (catholicireland.net 23/8/05)
District expected to contribute to Catholic youth gathering (ABC New England North West NSW 23/8/05)
Sydney: The Host Of World Youth Day 2008 (Catholic Bishops Conference of India 23/8/05)
Shades of Grey: Mel and Pell Planning the Passion (Online Catholics 24/8/05)
The International Council of Christians and Jews will call off plans to hold its international conference in Sydney in 2007 if Cardinal Pell goes ahead with his plan to invite Mel Gibson to stage a version of the Passion for World Youth Day in 2008 (Online Catholics 24/8/05)
Strewth: Mass celebration (Sydney Morning Herald 24/8/05)
Sydney youths hope WYD 2008 runs more smoothly than Cologne (The Universe 23/8/05)
Cardinal Pell on What Sydney Can Offer (Zenit 22/8/05)
Hopes and Fears of Sydney's '08 Coordinator (Zenit 22/8/05)
24 Aug 2005