Pope attends youth rally

April 19, 2008 9:00:12 PM PDT
Pope Benedict got a hero's welcome Saturday at a youth rally in Yonkers, New York.

Three years ago he was elected pope, but many Americans are just getting to know him this week. Saturday night he made his appeal to young people, 20,000 of them, just north of New York City.

There's a bit of a rock concert feel when you put the pope and youth together. Even Kelly Clarkson performed before the pope arrived. Pope Benedict wants young people to seek a call to purpose in their lives.

"It's a beautiful exchange of enthusiasm and newness and openness with an older generation of wisdom," said Holly Georgopulos, Chicago youth minister.

And, maybe, some of these young people will become priests and nuns.

"You will discover the particular vocation God has for you. Embrace it with joy," the pope said.

Chicago seminarian Manuel Dorantes is doing that.

"I think we as young people, we want that. We want to be commissioned. We want to be told, 'You know what? I'm trusting on you,' " said Dorantes.

Earlier, in midtown Manhattan, crowds lined 5th Avenue to catch a glimpse of Pope Benedict, like the Skokna family, who drove all the way from Oak Brook.

"I was hesitant driving 13 hours from Chicago-- thought, Do I want to do this? But I am so glad I did this," said Chris Skokna.


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