2009-02-06 14:19:47

Pope’s Feb-Apr schedule includes a youth Mass for death anniversary of predecessor

(February 6, 2009) Pope Benedict XVI has a busy few weeks ahead of him, with the start of Lent and Easter celebrations, spiritual exercises, a trip to Africa, the fourth anniversary of his predecessor's death on April 2, and his own 82nd birthday four days later. In February the Pope has two important appointments: a consistory for a few causes of canonization on Feb. 21, and the Feb. 25th Ash Wednesday ceremony at the start of the Lenten season. On March 1, the Holy Father and the Roman Curia will begin their annual spiritual exercises, which last till March 7. 10 days later, he leaves for his apostolic trip to Cameroon and Angola, March 17-23. On the 4th death anniversary of his predecessor Pope John Paul II on April 2, Pope Benedict XVI will celebrate mass for youth from the Diocese of Rome. He will begin the Holy Week, leading the Palm Sunday celebrations in St.Peter’s Square on April 5. Other Holy Week observances will follow during the week, including the traditional candlelit Way of the Cross on Good Friday at Rome’s Colosseum at night. He will celebrate the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday, April 11, at 9 p.m. On Easter Sunday, he will celebrate Mass in St. Peter's Square in the morning, and at midday, give his blessing "Urbi et Orbi".

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