Young Europeans gather to reaffirm global friendship for a future of peace
By Vatican News staff writer
Some 1,000 young people, high school and university students, from 13 European countries are gathering on 25-27 August in the northern Italian cities of Padua and Venice for the international meeting of the "Youth for Peace" movement of the Community of Sant'Egidio, the Italian-based worldwide Catholic lay association committed to promoting dialogue, peace and solidarity in the world.
Titled “Global Friendship for a Future of Peace”, the gathering will reaffirm their aspiration and commitment to promoting a more peaceful world as the devastating war waged by Russia against Ukraine rages on, along with other conflicts around the globe.
Some 70 Ukrainian girls and boys from Kyiv, Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk are joining the event to share their hopes for peace with their peers from other European countries, and discuss various topics, including ecology, migration, poverty, to foster a culture of solidarity and integration.
Prayer vigil for peace with Cardinal Matteo Zuppi
The programme of the event includes a prayer vigil for peace presided over on Friday evening by Cardinal Matteo Zuppi, the president of the Italian Bishops’ Conference (CEI) and Pope Francis’ special envoy for peace in Ukraine. The Archbishop of Bologna visited Kyiv and Moscow in June, and Washington in July to open up paths for a just peace in Ukraine and is expected to continue his mission by traveling to Beijing, China, to further discuss a possible peaceful solution to the conflict, as both parties seem unwilling to negotiate a compromise.
On Saturday morning paricipants will join a meeting with Marco Impagliazzo, the president of the Community of Sant'Egidio, entitled "Everything can change".
The gathering will conclude on Sunday afternoon, in Venice, with a flash mob for peace in St Mark's Square.