ROME, APRIL 30, 2011 ( Promotion of World Youth Day will intensify this weekend as some 100 volunteers and organizers have descended upon Rome to participate in the events surrounding the beatification of Pope John Paul II, who initiated the series of gatherings in 1985.

Four WYD Madrid Information Points have been set up in "strategic locations" throughout Rome to promote the youth day, set to take place Aug. 16-21. Two of the stands are set up on the Corso Vittorio Emanuele II, one next to the Spanish Steps, and another in the Piazza del Popolo.

"Our goal," explained María Gil-Casares, director of the promotion of the World Youth Day in Madrid, "is as Benedict XVI has mentioned, to reiterate the invitation to participate in WYD. We hope that this will be an opportunity to raise public awareness of this great celebration of faith."

The stands provide information on World Youth Day and the city of Madrid, as well as a schedule of events.

Also, five World Youth Day promotion films will be shown tonight at the prayer vigil to take place in the Circus Maximus, presided over by Cardinal Agostino Valli, the Pope's vicar for Rome, and organized by the Diocese of Rome.

Four of the short videos, which are available on YouTube, recall the connection that John Paul II had with the youth, the cross, priests and the sick.

John Paul II became the 10th patron of WYD Madrid following the announcement of his impending beatification this past January.

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On the Net:

John Paul II and Young People:

John Paul II and the Sick:

John Paul II and the Cross:

Pope John Paul II and Priests: - p/u/0/lwYPd2FvTsI