CASTELGANDOLFO, Italy, Jul 22, 02 (CWNews.com) - During his weekly public recitation of the Angelus on Sunday, two days before his departure for Canada, Pope John Paul II called young people, once again and in six languages, to the 17th World Youth Day which takes place this year in Toronto.
The Holy Father said that young people "enkindled a fire of
hope for everyone" in a world plunged into "a dark cloud" by "the tragic events of last September 11 and the conflict in the Holy Land." 
Speaking from the midst of the pilgrims gathered in the courtyard of his summer residence of Castelgandolfo, and not from his balcony as is his custom, the Pope recalled World Youth Day in Rome in 2000. "In those unforgettable days, faithful young people enkindled a fire of hope for everyone," he said. The gathering in Toronto is a means "of continuing this common, brotherly pilgrimage around the world," the Holy Father said, adding, "The tragic events of September 11 and the conflict in the Holy Land have cast a dark cloud over the world."
"I will go there will to pray with them, to share our joy
and to have together an experience enriched by faith," said the Pope while inviting particularly the "many young people who cannot be present in person to follow the event through the various means of communication" and "to be united in prayer."
John Paul then addressed the people present in six
languages, asking them particularly to pray that the World Youth Day of Toronto result in "a broad overflowing of graces and blessings." Sometimes joking in Polish with the citizens of his homeland, sometimes more serious, the Pope finished by saying, in English, that summer is "a time of reflection and reading of the Scriptures."
Finally, before withdrawing to his residence, the Pope
exclaimed in an off-the-cuff remark in Italian, "To all the young people who go to Toronto, happy voyage!" and the crowd responded with loud cheers and applause.