News

Pope Says Goodbye to Spain

Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese,
8 Nov 2010

Before leaving Spain, Benedict XVI met briefly at the airport with the Prime Minister of Spain, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero. He was accompanied by José Montilla, the president of the Generalitat of Catalonia. With military honors as a head of state, the King of Spain Juan Carlos I, said good-bye to Benedict XVI in Barcelona's El Prat airport.

Juan Carlos I
King of Spain
"Again, thank you wholeheartedly for your memorable visit. Thanks, not only in name and the Spanish people, but also the government of Spain, the regional and municipal authorities we have received in the past days."

Before closing, the King of Spain noted the Pope's upcoming visit to Spain in August of 2011.

Juan Carlos I
King of Spain
"I especially look forward to next August in Madrid on the occasion of World Youth Day."

The Pope thanked the Spanish locals that have been with him during the two-day trip in Spain.

Benedict XVI
"I am grateful for the many constant and touching gestures of attention offered in these days to the Pope, clear signs of the openness and hospitality characteristic of the people of these lands so dear to my heart."

Benedict made special note of some moments from his trip. He recalled on his path to Santiago de Compostela how the Christian faith is deeply rooted in Spanish culture. And during his stay in Barcelona he discussed the joy of dedicating Gaudi's Sagrada Familia.

Benedict XVI
"I return to Rome after visiting only two places in this beautiful country. Nevertheless, in my thoughts and prayers, I have wished to embrace all Spaniards without exception and all those born elsewhere but now living here."

Before leaving Spain, the Pope said he looked forward to seeing everyone at the next World Youth Day.

Benedict XVI
"I bless you in the name of the Lord. With his help, we will meet again next year in Madrid, to celebrate World Youth Day. Goodbye!"

A journey of just 32 hours in Spain, which is already preparing for the return of the Pope for World Youth Day 2011.