COLOGNE, Germany, AUG. 22, 2005 (Zenit.org).- The German press took note of the unexpected impact that Benedict XVI made on young people, judging by the headlines at newsstands in the city center.
“Benissimo! … und tscho” was the headline in Italian and the Bavarian dialect of Cologne’s Express newspaper.
“Very good, and so long,” appeared next to a photograph of the Pope blessing the crowd from the Marienfeld hill on Sunday.
The subheadline said: “1 Million Pilgrims in World Youth Day. ‘I Love Cologne!’ — Pope Benedict.”
The Cologne daily Kölner Stadt Anzeiger today showed the Holy Father blessing the crowds with the headline “1 Million Pilgrims With the Pope.” The newspaper pointed out that the traffic at the end of the Mass was out of control due to lack of organization.
The Kölnische Rundschau featured a similar photograph with the headline “1 Million Celebrate With the Pope,” and reported on “the long return of pilgrims to Cologne,” particularly “übermüdet” (extremely tired) youths leaning against one another as they slept in the central train station.
The newspaper sketched a portrait of six pilgrims: Dariusz Rottau, 20, of Poland; Elena Torta, 19, of Italy; Marc Hofmann, 19, of Switzerland; Sister Magdalene Vytuyska, 20, in a black habit, from Ukraine; Nesphory Nkondora, 26, of Tanzania, and Flor Ortega, 29, of Guatemala.
The Italian headline of the Weltkompakt was “Ciao Benedetto!” (So Long, Benedict!), showing a picture of Marienfeld.
In its inside photos the Weltkompakt printed testimonies of young people with the title: “I am not alone in my faith.”
The national newspaper Die Welt ran the headline “Pope Preaches Before 1 Million People,” and the caption under the photograph adds: “Despite the poor weather, they came for the closing Mass.” Die Welt’s subtitle read: “Benedict XVI deplores forgetfulness of God at the end of WYD.”
The Frankfurter Allgemeine, also a national newspaper, stated on the front page: “Pope Wishes Germans Peace and Unity.”
The newspaper speaks about a “Weltkatholikentag,” a play on words with “Katholikentag” (Catholic Day), the annual national meeting of German Catholics.
“Who Still Listens to the Pope’s Voice?” asked the national newspaper Die Zeit on the front page, featuring a smiling Benedict XVI.
Die Zeit, which answers the question with profiles of youths who attended World Youth Day, set up a space on its Internet site for the event.
Apparently only one newspaper of those sold in a supermarket in the city center had a negative report.
Its headline stated: “End of Chaos in the City.” Some clients covered the front page with other newspapers.