Tuesday, August 01, 2006

I'm Packed...

35,000 altar boys to attend papal audience

Aug. 01 (CWNews.com) - Over 35,000 altar boys, primarily from Germany, are expected to attend the regular weekly public audience of Pope Benedict XVI (bio - news) at the Vatican on August 2.

The altar boys will be participating in a 2-day visit to Rome, sponsored by Coetus Internationalis Ministrantium, an international group that organizes pilgrimages for altar servers and choir members. They will be attending the first Wednesday audience by the Holy Father after a three-week hiatus, caused by his summer vacation. Coetus Internationalis Ministrantium was founded in Altenberg, Germany-- near Cologne-- in 1960, and dedicated to the spiritual formation of lay people involved in liturgical ministry. The group's current president is Bishop Martin Gächter, an auxiliary of the Swiss Basel diocese.

In addition to the papal audience, the altar boys-- more than 30,000 of them from Germany-- will attend a Mass celebrated in St. Peter's Basilica by Cardinal Christoph Schönborn