The Closing Mass of AYD, KYD
The Closing Mass for the 6th Asian Youth Day and the 3rd Korean Youth Day was offered by Pope Francisco on August 17, 4:30 PM at Hamieupseong Fortress at Seosan, Chungnam Province. The next 7th Asian Youth Day will be held in Indonesia.
The Altar Crucifixes Offering Ceremony began at 3:30 PM. The Altar was completed by putting 16 crucifixes together, each of which AYD and KYD participants prepared and offered. The Altar of 405cm width, 180cm length, and 95cm height was formed by assembling those 16 crucifixes. Among the 16 crucifixes, one crucifix consists of 8 pieces, representing 16 Korean Dioceses and 23 participating Countries. Each crucifix represents 7 gifts from the Holy Spirit and 9 Fruits of the Holy Spirit respectively made by participants from 23 countries.
The Haemieupseong Fortress is a place where thousands of Catholic martyrs lost their lives for faith and the Altar for the Closing Mass was installed towards West Gate where martyrs were being dragged to the execution site. Back then, the martyrs deemed this Gate as “Door to Heaven.”
The crucifixes representing seven gifts of the Holy Spirit include wisdom (Seoul, India), knowledge (Incheon, Malaysia), fear (dread) (Suwon, Bangladesh), opinion (Uijeongbu, The Philippines), mastery (Chunchon, Thailand), strength (Wonju, China), and service (Jeju, Nepal). Also, the crucifixes representing fruits of the Holy Spirit include peace (Cheongju, Brunei), patience (Daegu, Vietnam), pleasure (Andong, Macau), Kkindness (Jeonju, Cambodia), good deed (Good Faith, Gwangju and East Timor), truth (Diligence, Busan and Taiwan), gentleness (Masan, Singapore), moderation (Military, Laos), love (Daejeon, Mongolia, Hong Kong, Japan, Republic of the Union of Myanmar, Indonesia, and Pakistan).
At 4:15 P.M., the Pope made an appearance through South Gate of Haemi Eupseong Fortress. Then, he moved to West Gate.
He entered into Jinnammun Gate of Haemieupseong Fortress, being welcomed by youths and believers from Daejeon Diocese.
All languages were used in harmony during the Mass. The Pope prayed in Latin and participants responded in their own languages. The First Reading was read in Tagalog and the Second Reading in Bahasa Indonesian. Also, the Gospel was read in Korean and the General Intercessions for “the Pope and the Church” were done in Japanese, “human community” in English, “Asian Church” in Hindi, and “the poor and the excluded” in Lao language.
Pope Francis opened His Holiness Homily by saying “Dear Young Friends” and asked “to spend these years in building a holier, more missionary and humble Church which loves and worships God by seeking to serve the poor, the lonely, and infirm and the marginalized.” At the last part of the Homily, the Pope stated loudly, “Wake up! Wake up!” The Zucchetto was taken off during the Homily by wind. The Pope’s Holy Homily was delivered in English. Though there was a communication barrier among all different languages, the Mass spoken in multi-languages was possible because the Order of Mass is same everywhere in the world.
It rained heavily from the morning in Seo-san city where Haemi Fortress is located. Rain stopped 20 and 30 minutes before the Mass. Cloudy weather made the Mass to proceed easily under in cooler temperature.
From the moment of starting sanctuary assembly till the end of the Mass, it was cloudy and windy without raining. Because of wind during the Homily, Pope’s Zucchetto was taken off.
Pope Francis said in his homily that, “Asian youths, wake up!. The glory of the martyrs shines upon you!” – the theme of the Sixth Asian Youth Day. The Pope stressed that the glory of the martyrs shines upon you by saying, “With the certainty of his victory over death and our participation in it, we can face the challenge of Christian discipleship today, in our own circumstances and time.” The Pope, in particular, repeated, “Wake up!” several times, saying, “‘Wake up!’ speaks to a responsibility that the Lord gives you,” the Pope continued, “Assured of God’s love, go out to the world so that, “by the mercy shown to you,” they – your friends, co-workers, neighbors, countrymen, everyone on this great continent – “may now receive the mercy of God” (cf. Rom 11:31). It is by his mercy that we are saved.”
After Eucharistic Communion, young Catholics shed in tears.
After the Mass, two speeches followed; the appreciation speech by H.E.Msgr. Peter U-il Kang, the President of Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Korea and the greeting speech by H.E.Gracias Card. Osvaldo, the President of FABC. At the end of E.H. Osvaldo Card.’s speech, he announced the next Asia Youth Day will be held in Indonesia. Indonesian youth acclaimed with joy and marched with waving Indonesian flag. A video clip introducing Indonesia was played and Indonesian youth played a performance wearing Indonesia traditional costume.
After the Mass, the Asia Youth Day Crucifix was handed over to Indonesian representative. The Crucifix passed on from Fr. Jin-Hong Park, the Director of Youth Pastoral Ministry in Daejeon Diocese to Most Rev. Jong-Su Kim, the President of Asia Youth Day Preparation, and from Most Rev. Kim to H.E. Gracias Card. Osvaldo. He again passed the Crucifix to Most Rev. Joel Baylon, the Chairman of FABC Youth Desk and Most. Rev. Joel handed the the Crucifix to Most Rev. Suhario, the Chairman of Indonesia Bishops’ Conferences and Most Rev. John Philip Shakily, the Chairman of Youth Desk. After the Ceremony, young people from Thailand came up to the stage and performed traditional dance. Julius Fernando (aged 24) from Indonesia said, “I was surprised at the announcement that next Asia Youth Day will be held in Indonesia. I am so glad. It will be a very interesting Asia Youth Day.”?