ROME (CWN) - The mayor of Rome announced on Thursday that the biennial Catholic youth gathering, World Youth Day, scheduled to be held in Rome in 2000 will take place at a religious sanctuary outside the city.

      The Italian news agency AGI quoted Mayor Francesco Rutelli as saying the event will take place at the Sanctuary of Divine Love, set aside in 1745 to enshrine a painting of the Virgin Mary which is believed to have saved the life of a pilgrim attacked by mad dogs. Up to 2 million youths are expected to gather with Pope John Paul at the sanctuary in 2000, although an exact date has not been set yet.

      Mayor Rutelli said that during the event, which is expected to be the highlight of the Jubilee Year, will begin with an 8-mile procession to the site by the gathering youth.

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March 16, 1998 volume 9, no. 53         DAILY CATHOLIC