THE APOSTOLIC JOURNEYS OF BENEDICT XVI - 2005

THE APOSTOLIC JOURNEYS OF BENEDICT XVI - 2005  

Almost a month after his election, Pope Benedict XVI made his first apostolic journey for the occasion of the XXIV National Eucharistic Congress, held in Bari, Italy, from 21 to 29 May 2005. He reflected on the theme 'We cannot live without Sunday'. The Italian Bishops' Conference chose the city and diocese of Bari because of its ecumenical vocation as a bridge to the East and custodian of the relics of St. Nicholas, who is widely known and venerated by Eastern Christians. It marked not only a profoundly religious choice, but also one with social and cultural implications given that Bari is a destination for migration and promoter of efforts to integrate different cultures. The other historic event which characterized the first months of the pontificate of Benedict XVI took place in Cologne, Germany, from 16 to 21 August, on the occasion of the XX World Youth Day whose theme was 'We have come to worship him'. The encounter with young people from around the world offered a time of profound spiritual renewal and joyful celebration, also for the Holy Father, who was returning to his homeland for the first time after being elected Pope.