World Youth Day Cross follows old pilgrim routes first posted 6 July 2005

 Tomorrow, young Catholics around the world begin the final 40 day countdown to the 11th annual World Youth Day, and the official WYD pilgrimage cross will be carried on the last leg of its journey to Cologne.

A number of young people accompanied by their bishops are scheduled to carry the pilgrimage cross, relay-style, during the final 750lm of its European journey, called "Kreuzspuren" (in the footsteps of the Cross) from Dresden, Germany to Cologne.

The cross is scheduled to travel almost exclusively on old pilgrimage paths. According to the Fides news service, from Dresden to Vacha the young pilgrims will travel by way of the Via Regia, and from Vacha to Cologne they will take the St Elisabeth Way and the St James Way, which if continued upon, would lead all the way to Compostela in Spain.

The 11th annual World Youth Day is from August 11 -21. The celebration will be Pope Benedict's first major event since his election , and one which many think could shape the direction of his papacy.

Source: WYD