Yesterday I celebrated Palm Sunday in the Archdiocese of Utrecht, at the Emmanuel church in Zutphen. That church was host to a preparatory program, called ‘Passion’, for the World Youth Days in Madrid, in August. God willing, I will be able to go there, thanks, in large part, to the youth worker of the archdiocese, who was willing to waive to age limit. The reason that we (for it is not just me) are not joining our own diocese for the trip to Madrid is not very interesting for this blog, but it boils down to us having faith that Utrecht’s program will be a success.

The day offered various events, starting with Mass with the local parish, and continuing with presentations, practical information and workshops. Below are some photos I took during the day.

The cavernous interior of the Emmanuel church, with local parishioners and young people taking part in the WYD program.

Local priests and Auxiliary Bishop Herman Woorts (second from right) concelebrated Mass with Archbishop Wim Eijk (right).

The archbishop gives the homily

"Hoc est enim corpus meum"

Attendance was very good

Fr. Patrick Kuipers delves into the theme for the World Youth Days 2011 and the pope's letter about it

One of the workshop was an introduction to Spanish

The archbishop hosted a workshop in which he drew a comparison between the religious landscape of the Colossae, recipient of a letter of St. Paul, and our modern society

Elements that those religious landscapes share: worship of spirits and of nature, scientists and astrologers, the Greek and Roman pantheons, mysterious New Age-like religions, people who claim to be visionaries, the Jewish religion and the worship of angels.

Youth worker Hao Tran speaks about the practicalities of our trip to Spain

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament

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