World Youth Day 2008

The 23rd World Youth Day was a Catholic youth festival that started on 15 July and continued until 20 July 2008 in Sydney, Australia. It was the first World Youth Day held in Australia and the first World Youth Day in Oceania. This meeting was decided by Pope Benedict XVI, during the Cologne World Youth Day of 2005. The theme was "You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you" (from Acts 1:8).

About 500,000 young people from 200 countries attended during the week, and more than 1,000,000 came for the weekend. They were joined by about 600 bishops and cardinals, as well as by 6,600 reporters.

XXIII World Youth Day
DateJuly 15, 2008-
July 20, 2008
 New South Wales,
Coordinates33°54′39″S 151°13′49″E / 33.91083°S 151.23028°E
TypeYouth festival
ThemeYou will receive the power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you (Acts 1:8)
Organised byCatholic Church
ParticipantsPope Benedict XVI
Previous2005 Cologne
Next2011 Madrid

Schedule of events

The festivals of WYD began on 1 July 2007, when a large 3.8-meter-high wooden cross and a large 15-kilogram icon of the Virgin Mary arrived in Sydney to travel around the country.[1] The relay-style event, known as the Journey of the Cross and Icon (or JCI for short) saw the cross and icon go on a pilgrimage around the dioceses of Australia, engaging with a variety of Catholic parishes and communities.[2]

The WYD Cross was entrusted to the youth of the world by Pope John Paul II in 1984 as a sign of peace and hope.[3] The Pope told the young people of the world to take it around the world as "a symbol of Christ's love for humanity". In 2004, Pope John Paul II commissioned the large icon of the Virgin Mary to accompany the cross' pilgrimage. It is a symbol intended to represent Mary's maternal love for young people. From the announcement of the host World Youth Day, the cross and icon travel ceremonially around the world similar to the Olympic torch relay.

In the week preceding the main event, many young Catholic pilgrims spent time in different parts of Australia and New Zealand, staying with a local parish as part of the Days in the Dioceses. After their stay, they travelled to Sydney for the Opening Mass of the week-long main event.

20080712 Sydney World Youth day Station of the Cross rhrsl
Rehearsal for Stations of the Cross on 12 July near the Sydney Opera House

The Pope arrived at Sydney on 13 July at Richmond Air Force Base in North Western Sydney on a special Alitalia flight. Until 17 July he stayed in the Opus Dei centre, called Kenthurst Study Centre, 30 km from Sydney.[4]

On 15 July, World Youth Day 2008 began with the Opening Mass, celebrated by George Cardinal Pell, the Archbishop of Sydney, at Barangaroo. This was followed by a concert.[5]

Each morning from 15 to 17 July, Catechists were held in approximately 300 locations. Pilgrims received teachings from a Bishop and also celebrated Mass. In the afternoons, pilgrims journeyed into the city and attend the Youth Festival consisting of a series of art exhibitions, concerts, seminars, and conferences.

On 17 July 2008, 500,000[6] attendees from around the world were present at Barangaroo to welcome Pope Benedict XVI on a day dubbed Super Thursday by the press.[7] The Pope actually arrived on 14 July, but only appeared in public for the first time on the 17th. The event involved the Pope travelling around Port Jackson in a "boatacade" where pilgrims lined the shores to see him. However, there were many disappointed spectators in places like the Botanic Gardens and Circular Quay who did not actually see the Pope because of where he was sitting on the boat. The Sydney Children's Choir and Gondwana Voices performed at the event. The Pope then spoke extensively to the pilgrims and greeted them in five foreign languages. In order to let the pilgrims see him better the Pope was driven around Barangaroo through the crowds in his Popemobile.[8][9]

Dear young people, let me now ask you a question... How are you using the gifts you have been given, the “power” which the Holy Spirit is even now prepared to release within you? What legacy will you leave to young people yet to come? What difference will you make?[10]
— Pope Benedict XVI

On 18 July, there was a live re-enactment of the Stations of the Cross at major city landmarks with an estimated 270,000 participants. Around 500 million people around the world followed the stations on television.[11]

On 19 July, around 235,000 pilgrims embarked on a 10-kilometre pilgrimage walk, beginning at the Mary MacKillop Chapel in North Sydney, over the Sydney Harbour Bridge and across the city to attend an overnight vigil before the Mass at Randwick Racecourse.[12]

Approximately 250,000 pilgrims slept overnight at Randwick, and about 300,000 to 400,000 participants attended the Final Mass celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday 20 July.[13]

Pope Benedict continued a tradition of Australian Papal Masses at Randwick Racecourse, following in the footsteps of John Paul II and Paul VI. At the conclusion of the final mass the Pope announced that the 2011 World Youth Day would be held in Madrid, Spain.[14]

Web 2.0

WYD 2008 was the first World Youth Day to take full advantage of telecommunications, with Pope Benedict sending text messages to the pilgrims during the week. Each pilgrim who registered for WYD had the option of providing a mobile phone number to which the Pontiff's message would be sent at the beginning of each day.

Date Papal Message

15 July

Young friend, God and his people expect much from you because you have within you the Fathers supreme gift: the Spirit of Jesus –BXVI

16 July

The Holy Spirit gave the Apostles and gives you the power boldly to proclaim that Christ is risen! –BXVI

17 July

The Holy Spirit is the principal agent of salvation history: let him write your life history 2! –BXVI

18 July

The spirit impels us 4ward 2wards others; the fire of his love makes us missionaries of God's charity. See you tomorrow nite –BXVI

19 July

Dear friend, you must be holy & you must be missionary: never separate holiness from mission –BXVI

It also saw the launch of a new registration social networking site called, with the aim to connect young Catholics before, during and after World Youth Day 2008.[16][17]

On 8 September, a final message was sent via SMS to WYD2008 pilgrims registered on,[18] marking 50 days after the closing Mass:[19]

Dear Friends,
Fifty days ago we were together for the celebration of Mass. Today I greet you on the birthday of Mary, Mother of the Church. Empowered by the Spirit and courageous like Mary your pilgrimage of faith fills the Church with life! Soon I am to visit France. I ask you all to join me in praying for the young people of France. May we all be rejuvenated in hope!


Pilgrims were served a traditional Australian menu. Over the six-day event, 3.5 million meals were served. To cater for the masses, 210,000 slices of bread, 425,000 chocolate bars, 200,000 meat pies and 300,000 servings of Weet-Bix Crunch were ordered. "We want to provide pilgrims with a good feed and a little bit of an Australian taste," WYD director of services Geoff Morris said; "We have tried to do that by including some of our more iconic items such as Tim Tams, Weet-Bix Crunch, Vegemite, lamingtons and good old baked beans". Organisers also held a "Big Aussie BBQ", which saw 200 barbecues lit up simultaneously across Sydney.[20]

There's nothing immoral with a little commercialism. Our way of life is built on commercialism, on trade, on industry, on finance and people have got a right to make a living out of doing a good thing, which is spreading Christ's message in a modern way.
— Cardinal George Pell[21]


Pilgrims and the public were able to buy 470 different products including papal mementos such as special WYD rosary beads, Pope Benedict XVI baseball caps and rugby jerseys. Sydney's Catholic Archbishop Cardinal George Pell said that the Church was not looking to make a profit.

Any remaining merchandise was given to Catholic charities and surplus clothing was sent overseas to developing nations.[22]

Panoramic image of crowd at vigil on 19 July


World Youth Day 2008 - Sydney, Australia
Lebanese wave their country's flag at the 2008 World Youth Day

World Youth Day organizers revised the expected number of attendees downwards during the lead-up to the event. In October 2007, the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, George Pell, claimed that "over half a million" people would attend the final mass at Randwick. The World Youth Day site later claimed likely attendance of "up to" half a million. Similarly, the projected number of overseas attendees was 150,000 people in 2006. This was later altered to a projection of "over 125,000" people from overseas. 65,000 visas were granted as of 12 days before the start of the event.[23][24][25][26][27]

Around 500,000 welcomed the pope to Sydney and 270,000 watched the Stations of the Cross. More than 300,000 pilgrims camped out overnight in preparation for the Final Mass.[28] The final attendance reported by Reuters was up to 300,000, however World Youth Day's Chief Operating Officer Danny Casey and other media reported over 400,000 attendees.[29][30][31]

World Youth Day official song

"Receive the Power"[32] is an original song written by Guy Sebastian and Gary Pinto, and chosen in May 2007 as the official anthem for the Roman Catholic Church's XXIII World Youth Day (WYD08).

"Receive the Power" was played extensively throughout the 6 days of World Youth Day in July 2008, and also in the television coverage which went around the world. Guy Sebastian performed at the concert after the Opening Mass which officially welcomed Pope Benedict XVI to Australia. Sebastian and Paulini also performed both the English and international versions at the Final Mass at Randwick Race Course on 20 July.[33] An estimated 400,000 people attended the mass.[34] Sebastian and Paulini were invited to perform "Receive The Power" at the Pope's Farewell[35] and thank you to volunteers on 21 July.[36]


The Pope announced that pilgrims at World Youth Day 2008 and those from around the world who pray for the "spiritual goals of this meeting and for its happy outcome" would be able to receive indulgences. In Roman Catholic teaching an indulgence is believed to erase the temporal punishment (time spent in purgatory) which results from sin.

Two types of indulgences were available:

  • plenary (full) indulgence – for attendees
  • partial indulgence – for those who pray[37]

Controversies around the World Youth Day

Public funding

Some were concerned regarding the NSW state government's public funding of $129 million and the federal government's funding of $55 million.[38] Some described it as a "promotional event" for the Catholic Church.[39]

However the Sydney Chamber of Commerce estimated that World Youth Day would generate $230 million of economic activity and the NSW state government claimed that it would have a direct economic benefit over $150 million. In addition to direct benefits the state government said that the coverage of World Youth Day overseas was worth at least $1 billion.[40] These gains would offset and exceed the government's expenditure on World Youth Day.

Use of Randwick Racecourse

WYD08 FinalMass
The Final Mass held at Southern Cross Precinct (named specifically for the event) drew 350,000[41] pilgrims.

The use of the Randwick Racecourse for the event was criticised and legally challenged by the racing industry in Sydney. Industry representatives argued that alternative sites, such as the Sydney Olympic Park at Homebush Bay, were more suitable venues. However, the NSW and federal governments and the event organisers insisted that Randwick Racecourse was the only location suitable for an event of such scale.

The World Youth Day committee initially offered to pay an agreed settlement to the racing industry. However, after some complaints, the federal and the New South Wales state government stepped in and jointly pledged $42 million in compensation to the racing industry[42] – more than triple the previously agreed upon amount. In exchange, the industry relocated its operations to the Warwick Farm and Rosehill Gardens racecourses, with infrastructure at these sites and at Randwick to be upgraded as part of the compensation package. In addition, the Australian Jockey Club's lease at Randwick was to be extended by 50 years.[43][44]

Despite some earlier concerns the final mass left the turf in good condition. The Randwick Project Steering Committee chief Hugh Martin stated that he was "very pleased with the state of the track" and an Australian Jockey Club spokesman noted that the "track seems to have held up well."[28]

World Youth Day legislation

The Parliament of New South Wales passed the World Youth Day Act 2006 especially for the event. The regulations made under this act however had been the source of some controversy, mainly in the operation of various provisions of the World Youth Day Regulation 2008 within hundreds of so-called "declared areas" across Sydney.[45] These areas included over 40 city locations, including popular tourist spots the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge, as well as at numerous public transport stations and schools.

The most significant and contentious amendments to the regulations were announced by the Deputy Premier John Watkins on 25 June 2008 and came into effect on 1 July 2008. People entering or exiting declared areas would have been subject to being searched, including vehicles or baggage, if so requested.[46] According to The Australian, this may have included either general clothing inspections, partial strip searches, or even arrest.[47][48][49] The regulations would have been enforced by police, with the Rural Fire Service and the State Emergency Service having enforcement power over some provisions. These authorisations were especially controversial, as such granted enforcement powers are normally available only to police.[50] The new powers also caused concern to those organisations,[51] which did not consider enforcement to be their role.[52]

Of the most contentious of the regulations, a maximum fine of A$5,500 was able to be imposed for causing 'annoyance or inconvenience' to WYD participants. This was challenged in the Federal Court of Australia on the grounds of violating the implied constitutional freedom of political communication and/or exceeding the regulation making power of the World Youth Day Act 2006 (NSW). The Full Court agreed with the latter argument, declaring Clause 7(1)(b) regarding the specific prohibition of causing "annoyance to participants in a World Youth Day event" invalid.[53]

Protest groups

A number of activist groups protested against the Catholic Church on World Youth Day. Various atheist and secular groups cooperated to form the NoToPope Coalition for WYD. The coalition rallied against the Church's stances on same-sex marriage, abortion, and contraception. Additionally, groups representing some victims of sexual abuse protested prior to WYD. On Saturday, the day of the pilgrimage walk, approximately 100 protesters positioned themselves on a street corner to chant slogans and wave banners at the over 200,000 pilgrims walking to Randwick. A strong police presence controlled the protesters.[54]

Protest organisers had planned to use T-shirts with anti-Catholic slogans such as "Religion harms us by privileging faith over reason", "Badly needed community services were robbed to pay the Pope"[55][56] and "107 Catholic clergy convicted".[57]

There were very few physical confrontations between the pilgrims and protesters, with some initiated by the protesters throwing condoms at the pilgrims. Police arrested one Australian pilgrim for attacking a protester.[58][54] A Sydney small business owner alleged that he received an anonymous threat against him and his family for producing "annoying" T-shirts.[59]

Controversy over Bishop Anthony Fisher's statements

WYD coordinator Bishop Fisher told journalists the latest controversy was detracting from the massive Catholic youth festival underway in Sydney. "I think most of Australia was enjoying, delighting in the beauty and goodness of these young people... rather than dwelling crankily, as a few people are doing, on old wounds."

Anthony and Christine Foster spoke out on the Bishop's comments, labelling them "very insensitive". Their daughters Emma and Katherine were raped by priest Kevin O'Donnell leading to Emma's suicide at the age of 26, while her sister Katherine drank heavily before being left disabled when hit by a drunk driver in 1999. Advocates for Survivors of Child Abuse director Michael Salter was outraged by Bishop Anthony Fisher's comments, saying, "The Catholic Church has a lot to learn about the burden of clergy abuse on the lives of victims, and those who care for them."[60]

Bishop Fisher later said he had been misquoted by media representatives, who, according to him, had been the people he had called "cranky" and not the victims.[61]

Transport concerns

An additional 4,000 train and 3,400 bus services were commissioned for the event. There were 400 road clearways and 300 road closures.[62] Threats to strike on 17 July in the heart of the celebrations, made by disgruntled rail workers, were withdrawn following negotiations with the state government.[63]

Following World Youth Day, the NSW Premier Morris Iemma gave the transport systems' performance a 10-out-of-10 rating. He stated that special events such as WYD proved that decent public transport was possible and was considering implementing some of the strategies used for the event on an ongoing basis.[40] Former Roads and Traffic Authority director Ken Robinson said that the public transport system ran smoothly during World Youth Day due to better coordination between different transport authorities, whilst NSW transport minister John Watkins noted that public transport for the week worked "tremondously well."[64][65]

Apology, meeting with victims and criticisms

SaintMarys CathedralSydney
St. Mary's Cathedral, Sydney, Australia, the Pope's residence during World Youth Day 2008.

On 19 July 2008, in Sydney's St. Mary's Cathedral, Pope Benedict XVI made a historic full apology for child sex abuse by priests and clergymen in Australia. Before a congregation of 3,400, he called for compensation and demanded punishment for those guilty of the "evil": "Here I would like to pause to acknowledge the shame which we have all felt as a result of the sexual abuse of minors by some clergy and religious in this country. I am deeply sorry for the pain and suffering the victims have endured and I assure them that, as their pastor, I too share in their suffering." The Pope added: "Victims should receive compassion and care, and those responsible for these evils must be brought to justice. These misdeeds, which constitute so grave a betrayal of trust, deserve unequivocal condemnation. I ask all of you to support and assist your bishops, and to work together with them in combating this evil. It is an urgent priority to promote a safer and more wholesome environment, especially for young people." On 21 July, before flying out of Australia Pope Benedict met with a group of four victims of sexual abuse at St. Mary's Cathedral in Sydney, listened to their stories and celebrated mass with them.[66] Broken Rites, the support group representing Australian victims, criticised the meeting as hand-picked: "I'm afraid that what they've done is selected victims who have agreed with what the church's policies are".[67][68][69]

Broken Rites said: "Sorry may be a start but we want to see a lot more. We want the victims to be treated fairly, we don't want them to feel that they have been shut out, we don't want them to be re-abused by church authorities." It reported that there were 107 Catholic priests and religious brothers sentenced in Australian courts on sex charges, and that in 2002, Australian bishops had already apologised for past abuses.[70][71]

The then NSW Premier Morris Iemma said he hoped "it would be a sign of righting the wrongs of the past and of a better future and better treatment by the church of the victims and their families."[72]


The Pontiff departed from Sydney Airport on 21 July 2008. Before boarding a chartered Qantas Boeing 747-400 at Sydney Airport's Hangar 96, he thanked Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, Governor General Major General Michael Jeffery, newly appointed Ambassador to the Holy See Tim Fischer, and Cardinal George Pell.[73] The Pontiff left Australia after the farewell message of thanks by Rudd: "Today I announce that for the first time Australia will have a resident Ambassador to the Holy See in Rome. And today I announce that the Government will be recommending to his Excellency the Governor General the appointment of the former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia the Honourable Tim Fischer as Australia’s first resident Ambassador to the Holy See."[74]


  1. ^ WYD Cross & Icon Arrival and The Western Deanery
  2. ^ Arrival of the Cross and Icon signal countdown to Australia's World Youth Day
  3. ^ The Cross, A Gift from John Paul II to the World’s Youth – Xt3 Library
  4. ^ Opus Dei and WYD2008
  5. ^ "WYD08 Events". Retrieved 18 July 2008.
  6. ^ cf. Pope's busy meeting schedule continues: After 500,000 people turned out to welcome him to Sydney yesterday
  7. ^ "Pope arrives to kick off Super Thursday". The West Australian. 17 July 2008. Retrieved 18 July 2008.
  8. ^ WYD2008 Confirms Papal visit to MacKillop Shrine
  9. ^ Papal Address at WYD2008 Arrival
  10. ^ Closing Mass Homily
  11. ^ cf. Pope's busy meeting schedule continues
  12. ^ 235,000 Attend World Youth Day Vigil, from 19 July 2008.
  13. ^ 400,000 expected for Sydney papal mass Sydney Morning Herald
  14. ^ Spanish hail Madrid choice for next World Youth Day
  15. ^ EWTN: Words from WYD2008
  16. ^ World Youth Day 2008 Embracing Telecommunications – WYD/ Telstra Press Release
  17. ^ Cardinal Pell launches 'Catholic Facebook'. Retrieved on 12 December 2008.
  18. ^ Fifty days after WYD, Pope Benedict, Cardinal Pell send messages to pilgrims
  19. ^ Vatican: Message from Benedict XVI 50 Days after WYD2008 Retrieved on 31 October 2008.
  20. ^ 200,000 meat pies for WYD. Retrieved on 8 June 2008.
  21. ^ Blessing to buy papal souvenirs . Retrieved on 5 July 2008.
  22. ^ Lam, M. 2008. Merchandise Being Bought Religiously. The Daily Telegraph, 20 July 2008, page 11.
  23. ^ George Pell at the National Press Club
  24. ^ about WYD08
  25. ^ Interview with Auxiliary Bishop Anthony Fisher of Sydney, Australia – National Catholic Reporter
  26. ^ WYD visa numbers below expectations – ABC News
  27. ^ world youth day 2008 confirms international pilgrim numbers
  28. ^ a b Randwick's turf survives WYD
  29. ^ "FACTBOX: World Youth Day final Mass facts and figures". Reuters. 20 July 2008.
  30. ^ World Youth Day 2008 – Catholic Online Archived 22 January 2012 at WebCite
  31. ^ World Youth Day a logistical success
  32. ^ Receive the Power Myspace video
  33. ^ Aussie pop stars, ARIA award winners and the Tap Dogs to headline World Youth Day Sydney 2008. Retrieved 1 March 2009
  34. ^ wyd2008. World Youth Day Sydney a success – 400,000 fill Randwick Racecourse for WYD08 Final Mass. Retrieved 1 March 2009 Archived 11 August 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  35. ^ The Pope's Farewell MySpace Video
  36. ^ wyd2008. Pope Benedict XVI thanks volunteers and leaves Australia happy and blessed. Retrieved 1 March 2009 Archived 12 January 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  37. ^ Pope grants indulgences for World Youth Day
  38. ^ Almighty cost of hosting pilgrimsSydney Morning Herald
  39. ^ World Youth Day: costs up, benefits down – NSW Greens
  40. ^ a b WYD coverage worth $1b: Iemma
  41. ^ CNN Reports on WYD08
  42. ^ Lewis, Rosie (22 July 2008). "Despite 400,000 pilgrims, Randwick racecourse is intact". The Daily Telegraph. UK.
  43. ^ "Racing industry offered payout for Pope". The West Australian. 15 November 2007.
  44. ^ World Youth Day reaches agreement with racing industry
  45. ^ World Youth Day Amendment Regulation 2008 (NSW Bar Association)
  46. ^ World Youth Day Regulation 2008 (NSW) r 8 Request to undergo search as condition of entry to World Youth Day declared areas .
  47. ^ Thou shalt not annoy or trespass Sydney Morning Herald
  48. ^ World Youth Day Amendment Bill 2007 – NSW State Parliament
  49. ^ Strip searches okayed for WYD – The Australian
  50. ^ Volunteers refuse WYD powers
  51. ^ Volunteers spurn Youth Day powers
  52. ^ Volunteers reject Youth Day powers
  53. ^ Evans v State of New South Wales [2008] FCAFC 130 (18 July 2008), Federal Court (Full Court) (Australia).
  54. ^ a b "Protest turns ugly as condoms rile marcher". The Sydney Morning Herald. 20 July 2008.
  55. ^ World Youth Day condom protest against PopeSydney Morning Herald
  56. ^ World Catholic Youth Day Action – Sydney Atheists
  57. ^ "Child abuse victims protest outside NSW – SBS World News Australia". Retrieved 18 July 2008.
  58. ^ > National > Pilgrim arrested for bashing a protester
  59. ^ "Faithful get annoyed over merchandise – WorldYouYouthDay – Specials –". The Sydney Morning Herald. 8 July 2008. Retrieved 18 July 2008.
  60. ^ "Anger over bishop's attack on "cranky" abuse victims – SBS World News Australia". Archived from the original on 6 August 2008. Retrieved 31 August 2008.
  61. ^ The faith and conviction of Bishop Anthony Fisher – Wentworth Courier, 29 July 2009
  62. ^ Williams, Lauren (16 July 2008). "Sydney's rail, bus and ferries cope with extra 185,000". The Daily Telegraph. UK.
  63. ^ Rail Strike Cancelled
  64. ^ Morris Iemma to investigate decent public transport always Archived 3 August 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  65. ^ NSW urged to learn from WYD transport success
  66. ^ The Australian
  67. ^ The Times, Pope meets sex abuse victims in secret Sydney mass
  68. ^, Pope Meets Australian Abuse Victims
  69. ^, Pope meets sex abuse victims as Australia trip ends Archived 2 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  70. ^, Pope apologizes for 'evil' of child sex abuse Archived 7 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  71. ^, Pope sorry for Church sexual abuse
  72. ^, Pope's Australia sex abuse apology not enough – critics Archived 29 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  73. ^, Sydney farewells Pope Benedict
  74. ^, Farewell to His Holiness Pope Benedict

External links

Barangaroo, New South Wales

Barangaroo is an inner-city suburb of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. It is located on the north-western edge of the Sydney central business district and the southern end of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. It is part of the local government area of the City of Sydney, and was part of the territory of the Cadigal people, the traditional owners of the Sydney city region. The area was used for fishing and hunting by Indigenous Australians prior to colonial settlement. The area is inclusive of The Hungry Mile, the name harbourside workers gave to the docklands area of Darling Harbour East during The Great Depression, where workers would walk from wharf to wharf in search of a job, often failing to find one.

In 2003, the Government of New South Wales determined that the precinct would be redeveloped from shipping and stevedoring facilities to provide more commercial office space and recreational areas. This redevelopment has moved from design contest to concept plan from 2005 to 2012. In the interim, stevedoring facilities have been relocated, some of the site remediated, and temporary alternate uses such as major events implemented, pending major development. The site is managed by an agency of the NSW Government, called the Barangaroo Delivery Authority.Redevelopment commenced in 2012 and is expected to be entirely completed by 2023. The redevelopment involves parkland with several new apartment buildings, as well as a hotel, "cultural space" and casino.

Catholic Church in Australia

The Catholic Church in Australia is part of the worldwide Catholic Church under the spiritual and administrative leadership of the Holy See. From origins as a suppressed, mainly Irish minority in early colonial times, the church has grown to be the largest Christian denomination in Australia, with a culturally diverse membership of around 5,439,268 people, representing about 23% of the overall population of Australia according to the 2016 census.The church is the largest non-government provider of welfare and education services in Australia. Catholic Social Services Australia aids some 450,000 people annually, while the St Vincent de Paul Society's 40,000 members form the largest volunteer welfare network in the country. In 2016, the church had some 760,000 students in more than 1,700 schools.The church in Australia has five provinces: Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. It has thirty-five dioceses, comprising geographic areas as well as the Military diocese and dioceses for the Chaldean, Maronite, Melkite and Ukrainian rites. The national assembly of Bishops is the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC), headed by Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge. There are a further 175 Catholic religious orders operating in Australia, affiliated under Catholic Religious Australia, headed by Sr Monica Cavanagh RSJ. One Australian has been recognised as a saint by the Catholic Church: Mary MacKillop, who co-founded the Josephite religious institute of sisters in the 19th century.

Catholic Church in Samoa

The Catholic Church in Samoa is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, which, inspired by the life, death and teachings of Jesus Christ, and under the spiritual leadership of the Pope and Roman curia in the Vatican City (within Rome) is the largest Christian church in the world. Catholic missionaries arrived in Samoa in 1845 and today Catholics account for around 20% of the overall population. Archbishop Alapati Lui Mataeliga was ordained as head of the Archdiocese of Samoa-Apia in 2003.

Catholic Church in Solomon Islands

The Catholic Church in Solomon Islands is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope in Rome.

There are just over 90,000 Catholics in Solomon Islands - just under a quarter of the total population. The country is divided into three dioceses: the Archdiocese of Honiara, the Diocese of Gizo and the Diocese of Auki. Solomon Islands sent a delegation of young people for the first time to World Youth Day 2008 when it was held in Sydney, Australia.Holy Name of Mary Seminary at Tenaru in Guadalcanal was founded in 1995 and serves the three dioceses. It is under the care of the Congregation of the Mission (Vincentian Fathers and Brothers).

Catholic Church in Tonga

The Catholic Church in Tonga is part of the worldwide Catholic Church under the leadership of its local bishop in communion with the Pope of Rome. It is estimated that approximately 16% of the population of the Pacific island Kingdom are Catholic, being 15,767 in 2004.1 Bishop Soane Patita Paini Mafi succeeded as Bishop of Tonga in 2008.

Catholic Church in Vanuatu

The Catholic Church in Vanuatu is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope in Rome. Catholics constitute 13% of the population of Vanuatu. The church is organized into one diocese based in the capital of Port Vila. The diocese is a member of the Pacific Bishops Conference.


Juventutem (Latin: Fœderatio Internationalis Juventutem) is an international movement of young Roman Catholics of the ages 18 to 35 who are devoted to the Tridentine Mass. The aim of the society is to foster and strengthen relationships between these young people at the national and international levels, and to encourage and assist them in developing their faith.

Kristina Keneally

Kristina Kerscher Keneally (born 19 December 1968) is an Australian politician who has been a Senator for New South Wales since February 2018, representing the Labor Party. Since 2019, she has served as Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, Shadow Minister for Home Affairs, and Shadow Minister for Immigration and Citizenship. She previously served as Premier of New South Wales from 2009 to 2011, the first woman to hold the position.Keneally was born in the United States to an American father and an Australian mother. She grew up in Toledo, Ohio, and is a graduate of the University of Dayton. After marrying an Australian, Ben Keneally, she settled in Australia permanently and became a naturalised citizen in 2000. Keneally was elected to the New South Wales Legislative Assembly seat of Heffron at the 2003 state election, succeeding Deirdre Grusovin after a controversial preselection process. After being re-elected to parliament at the 2007 state election, she became the Minister for Ageing and Disability Services and was subsequently appointed Minister for Planning by Premier Nathan Rees in 2008. She was also the state government's spokeswoman for World Youth Day 2008.By December 2009, Keneally had emerged as the preferred leadership candidate of the Labor Right faction, and defeated incumbent Premier Nathan Rees (who had been in office for just 15 months) in a party room ballot, winning by 47 votes to 21. The Keneally Government went on to suffer a 16.5% swing statewide at the 2011 state election – the biggest swing in Australian political history. She was replaced as leader of the Labor Party by John Robertson, who was elected unopposed, on 31 March 2011. She resigned from Parliament in June 2012.

In 2014, Keneally joined Sky News Live as a political commentator, later becoming co-host of To The Point. She took leave in November 2017 to stand as the Labor candidate for the Bennelong by-election, which she lost to previous member John Alexander. In February 2018 she was instead appointed to the Senate to fill a casual vacancy caused by Sam Dastyari's resignation. After the 2019 leadership election, Keneally was selected as deputy Senate leader in the shadow cabinet of new Labor leader Anthony Albanese. She was also given the portfolios of Home Affairs and Immigration and Citizenship.

MV Sydney 2000

MV Sydney 2000 is a cruise ship operating on Sydney Harbour. It holds the title for being the largest cruise ship operating on the harbour. Built in 1998 by Oceanfast in Henderson, Western Australia, it soon commenced operations as a three deck and five private dining room floating restaurant. The ship is owned by Captain Cook Cruises.On 18 July 2008, Sydney 2000 hosted Pope Benedict XVI on his journey from Rose Bay to Barangaroo for the official World Youth Day 2008 welcoming.

Mary MacKillop

Mary Helen MacKillop RSJ (15 January 1842 – 8 August 1909) was an Australian nun who has been declared a saint by the Catholic Church, as St Mary of the Cross. Of Scottish descent, she was born in Melbourne but is best known for her activities in South Australia. Together with the Reverend Julian Tenison Woods, she founded the Sisters of St Joseph of the Sacred Heart (the Josephites), a congregation of religious sisters that established a number of schools and welfare institutions throughout Australia and New Zealand, with an emphasis on education for the rural poor.

The process to have MacKillop declared a saint began in the 1920s, and she was beatified in January 1995 by Pope John Paul II. Pope Benedict XVI prayed at her tomb during his visit to Sydney for World Youth Day 2008 and in December 2009 approved the Catholic Church's recognition of a second miracle attributed to her intercession. She was canonised on 17 October 2010, during a public ceremony in St Peter's Square at the Vatican. She is the first Australian to be recognised by the Catholic Church as a saint.

Operation Testament

Operation Testament was the Australian Defence Force (ADF) contribution to World Youth Day 2008 (WYD08), a Catholic youth festival attended by Pope Benedict XVI held from 15 to 20 July 2008 in Sydney, Australia.

The ADF provided personnel and equipment, drawn from the Army, Navy and Air Force in support of WYD08 objectives in specialist and niche capabilities. The ADF carried out the logistics for an international ‘Military Pilgrims’ program as well as security support to the NSW Police Force for the event. Up to 370 ADF personnel were involved in Operation Testament. The ADF stated that its "...involvement in WYD08 is symbolic of the faith, across all religions, that guides its people in Australia and overseas."

Paul Newton (artist)

Paul Newton, is an Australian artist.

He has won the Archibald Prize Packing Room Prize twice:

in 1996

with a portrait of radio announcer John Laws CBE;

and, again in 2001 (along with the People's Choice award)

with a portrait of characters Roy Slaven and HG Nelson.

He has works in the permanent collection of the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra, and is a portrait artist for Parliament House, Canberra. He has painted Prime Ministers and Governor General Sir William Deane AC, KBE. Other portraits by him have been Archibald Prize finalists including paintings of

model Kate Fischer in 1997,

model Maggie Tabberer AM in 1999, and

rugby player David Campese AM in 2000 (which was acquired by the National Portrait Gallery). He has also won portrait competitions in Philadelphia and the Portrait Society of America's 2003 International Portrait Competition in Washington DC.

In 1999 a portrait he did of Bryce Courtenay AM was hung in the Archibald Salon des Refusés. A portrait of John Doyle he did was also hung in the Salon des Refusés in 1995.

In 2002 he painted arts figure Brett Sheehy AO for that year's Archibald Prize with the painting later being a finalist in the 2004 Doug Moran National Portrait Prize.In 2003 an image painted on Ian Thorpe's jeans by Paul Newton was used as a pin for the Jeans for Genes Day and the jeans were later auctioned for $26,000.He holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Sydney and a Diploma of Art from the Julian Ashton Art School in Sydney.

He painted a portrait of Tara Moss which was a finalist in the Doug Moran National Portrait Prize, and was 'highly commended' at the Shirley Hannan National Portrait Awards in Bega.Newton was commissioned to paint a depiction of the Madonna and Child Our Lady of the Southern Cross

for World Youth Day 2008, which now hangs permanently in St Mary's Cathedral, Sydney.

He has entered the Archibald Prize twelve times and been a finalist in 1997, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010 (with Self portrait #2 – dark night of the soul), 2012, 2014 and 2017.


Pirlangimpi is a populated place on Melville Island in the Northern Territory, Australia.Pirlangimpi lies two kilometres from the site of the first British settlement in northern Australia, the short-lived Fort Dundas. The present settlement, then called Garden Point, was established in 1937 as a police post, because of concerns about the activities of Japanese luggers. In 1940 a mission was founded by the Roman Catholic Missionaries of the Sacred Heart as a home for mixed-blood children, both local part-Japanese and those removed from their families in other parts of the Northern Territory.Australian Rules football was introduced by Brother John Pye of the Catholic mission. Three Norm Smith Medalists - Maurice Rioli, Michael Long and Cyril Rioli - were raised at the mission at Pirlangimpi.Marjorie Liddy, who grew up on the mission, provided an image that was widely used in Pope Benedict XVI's visit to World Youth Day 2008 in Sydney.The present community includes a primary school, police station, small supermarket, club, health facility and airstrip. Our Lady of Victories Catholic Church is the base of the Melville Island parish.The population is 371 (2011 census).

Randwick Racecourse

Royal Randwick Racecourse is a racecourse for horse racing located in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney, New South Wales. Randwick Racecourse is Crown Land leased to the Australian Turf Club and known to many Sydney racegoers as headquarters. The racecourse is located approximately six kilometres from the Sydney Central Business District in the suburb of Randwick. The course proper has a circumference of 2224m with a home straight of 410m.On 14 October 2017, the inaugural running of The Everest was held at Royal Randwick. The Everest is the richest race in Australia and the richest turf race in the world with $10 million in prize money.Since 2014, Randwick hosts The Championships, a two-day season-ending meeting in April that offers over AUD$20 million in prize money. It features several Group 1 races such as the Australian Derby, Doncaster Handicap and Queen Elizabeth Stakes.

Other annual events include the Sydney Carnival, Spring Carnival and the Chinese Festival of Racing.

Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney (Archidioecesis Sydneyensis) is a Latin Church metropolitan archdiocese, located in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Erected in 1842 and directly responsible to the Holy See, the archdiocese is responsible for the suffragan dioceses of Armidale, Bathurst, Broken Bay, Lismore, Maitland-Newcastle, Parramatta, Wagga Wagga, Wilcannia-Forbes and Wollongong. The Military Ordinariate of Australia, as well as the Eastern Rite Melkite Catholic Eparchy of St Michael, Archangel and the Maronite Diocese of St Maroun are also attached to the archdiocese.

St Mary’s Cathedral is the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney. The current archbishop is Anthony Fisher.

The Archdiocese of Sydney is involved in many different agencies within Sydney to provide services, care and support to people in need, including aged care; education; health care; prayer, worship and liturgy; solidarity and justice; vocations and seminary; youth and young adults ministry.

Roman Catholic Diocese of Hải Phòng

The diocese of Hải Phòng (Latin: Dioecesis Haiphongensis) is a Roman Catholic diocese in northern Vietnam. The bishop is Joseph Vu Van Thien, since 2002.

The creation of the diocese in its present form was declared 24 November 1960. The earliest forms of Roman Catholic institutions appeared in that territory since 1655, with French and Spanish missionaries until the middle of the 20th century.The diocese covers an area of 10,000 km², and is a suffragan diocese of the Archdiocese of Hanoi.

By 2004, the diocese of Hai Phòng had about 113,092 believers (2.4% of the population), 29 priests and 62 parishes.Queen of the Rosary Cathedral in Hai Phong has been assigned as the Cathedral of the diocese.Many migrant workers from other regions of Vietnam, who work in that busy port city, attend masses in Hai Phong.In 2008, the Bishop of Hai Phong Diocese Joseph Vu Van Thien took part in World Youth Day 2008 in Sydney, Australia, where he presented a speech at the Homily at the Opening Mass for Vietnamese Youth.

St Mary's Cathedral, Sydney

The Cathedral Church and Minor Basilica of the Immaculate Mother of God, Help of Christians (colloquially, St Mary's Cathedral) is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney and the seat of the Archbishop of Sydney, currently Anthony Fisher OP. It is dedicated to the "Immaculate Mother of God, Help of Christians", Patroness of Australia and holds the title and dignity of a minor basilica, bestowed upon it by Pope Pius XI on 4 August 1932.St Mary's has the greatest length of any church in Australia (although it is neither the tallest nor largest overall). It is located on College Street near the eastern border of the Sydney central business district in the City of Sydney local government area of New South Wales, Australia. Despite the high-rise development of the central business district, the cathedral's imposing structure and twin spires make it a landmark from every direction. In 2008, St Mary's Cathedral became the focus of World Youth Day 2008 and was visited by Pope Benedict XVI who consecrated the new forward altar. The cathedral was designed by William Wardell and built from 1866 to 1928. It is also known as St. Mary's Catholic Cathedral and Chapter House, Saint Mary's Cathedral and St Marys Cathedral. The property was added to the New South Wales State Heritage Register on 3 September 2004.

World Youth Day

World Youth Day (WYD) is an event for young people organized by the Catholic Church. The next, World Youth Day 2022, will be held in Portugal.

World Youth Day was initiated by Pope John Paul II in 1985. Its concept has been influenced by the Light-Life Movement that has existed in Poland since the 1960s, where during summer camps Catholic young adults over 13 days of camp celebrated a "day of community". For the first celebration of WYD in 1986, bishops were invited to schedule an annual youth event to be held every Palm Sunday in their dioceses. It is celebrated at the diocesan level annually, and at the international level every two to three years at different locations. The 1995 World Youth Day closing Mass in the Philippines set a world record for the largest number of people gathered for a single religious event with 5 million attendees— a record surpassed when 6 million attended a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis in the Philippines 20 years later in 2015.

World Youth Day 2011

World Youth Day 2011 was the 2011 occurrence of World Youth Day, a Catholic event held from August 16–21, 2011 in Madrid, Spain focused on youth. Media estimated the event's attendance as over a million or 1.5 million.Pope Benedict XVI revealed the location of the event at the final Mass in Australia at Sydney's Royal Randwick Racecourse during World Youth Day 2008.It was the second time that Spain hosted the event. World Youth Day 1989 was held from August 15–20 1989 at Santiago de Compostela.

Spanish bishops, including Madrid's Metropolitan Archbishop, Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela, and the coordinator of the World Youth Day 2011, Madrid Auxiliary Bishop César Franco Martínez, urged Pope Benedict XVI to name patrons for the event. Saint Rafael Arnáiz Barón, Saint Francis Xavier, Saint Isidore the Laborer, Saint Maria Torribia, Saint Teresa of Avila, Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Saint John of Avila, Saint Rose of Lima, Saint John of the Cross, and Pope John Paul II were all designated as co-patrons of World Youth Day 2011.This was Pope Benedict XVI's last World Youth day.

John paul 2 coa.svg Pope John Paul II
Coat of Arms of Benedictus XVI.svg Pope Benedict XVI
Insigne Francisci.svg Pope Francis

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