Sydney-bound WYD cross damaged in Senegal

The official World Youth Day Cross, which is currently visiting countries in Africa on its way to Sydney for next World Youth Day in 2008, has been damaged in a vehicle accident in Senegal.

Catholic News Agency reports that the small bus carrying the cross was involved in an accident as the cross was being transported.

Some passengers in the bus also suffered slight injuries but were immediately treated and released, while local artisans quickly repaired the cross.

The cross arrived in Dakar, a commune in Senegal, on Holy Tuesday. The National Director of the Pontifical Missionary Works, Fr Giuseppe Giordano, said that the presence of the World Youth Day (WYD) pilgrim cross had "strengthened the faith" of Catholics in the area.

The cross was then taken to the Catholic mission at Koumpountum where, according to Fr Giordano, "Catholics are a small minority."

"The arrival of the cross was a wonderful opportunity to reinforce in us Catholics the sense of belonging to the universal Church. Even some Muslims wanted to come and see the WYD cross," Fr Giordano said.

The cross will also visit numerous other countries in Africa including Ghana, Nigeria, Burundi, Rwanda among others before arriving in Australia.

It started its journey following the official handover last month on Palm Sunday to the Sydney organising committee of WYD at St Peter's Square.

Traveling WYD Cross damaged in Senegal (Catholic News Agency 5/5/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
World Youth Day 2008

Pell mentions WYD Cross in Easter Message (CathNews 13/4/06)
Pope vows to follow WYD cross to Sydney (CathNews 10/4/06)
Sydney eye on Sunday's WYD Cross handover (CathNews 7/4/06)
WYD delegates ready to depart for Rome (CathNews 6/4/06)
NSW Premier to attend WYD handover in Rome (CathNews 3/4/06)
NSW Premier's invite to Rome for WYD event (CathNews 20/3/06)
Bishop outlines World Youth Day progress (CathNews 13/3/06)
Winning design for World Youth Day (CathNews 24/2/06)
Pope tells theologian he's coming to Australia (CathNews 22/12/05)

NZ will be included in World Youth Day 2008 (NZ Catholic 29/4/06)
Send-off of pilgrim cross opens countdown to World Youth Day 2008 (Catholic News Service 10/4/06)
Pope confirms visit Australia in 2008, says bishop (Catholic News Agency 11/4/06)
Sydney's eyes were on Sunday's Vatican ceremony (catholicireland.net 11/4/06)

8 May 2006