Pope Celebrates Palm Sunday
The Associated Press reported that Pope Benedict XVI opened the Roman Catholic Church's most solemn week in Vatican City by urging young people during his Palm Sunday Mass to live pure, innocent lives. Holy Week this year will also include the second anniversary of the April 2, 2005 death of Pope John Paul II. Benedict walked through St. Peter's Square and up the steps of the basilica holding an intricately woven palm frond. Dozens of priests, bishops and cardinals preceded him, cluthing palms and olive branches in their red vestments. Palm Sunday commemorates Jesus Christ's entry into Jerusalem, and Good Friday includes the re-enactment of Christ's crucifixion and death and his resurrection on Easter Sunday.
The VOA news reported that Pope Benedict continued the tradition started by his predecessor on Sunday, and dedicated his Palm Sunday Mass to young people, who turned out in large numbers. The Pope told the faithful not to, "let themselves be carried along in life, and not to accept what everyone thinks, says or does, but to look around and search for God." Sabina Castelfranco said he spoke of the need for mankind to maintain innocent hands and a pure heart. The Roman Catholic Church will close one phase of the investigation into John Paul's sainthood on the same day.