The establishment of local teams in host parishes, inviting and engaging youth in rural areas, other dioceses and neighboring countries were on the program. Expanding the preparation committees and launching the campaign to look for accommodations in families were the priorities. In Benin, February-March is the hottest time of the year. In Cotonou the presidential election campaign still excited people’s emotions. But preparations continued in fifty Catholic and Protestant parishes.
Visits to Togo, Burkina Faso, Ghana and Ivory Coast made it possible to reaffirm the invitation from the Beninese, clarify practical arrangements and propose ways to begin the process of pilgrimage.
Many candidates wish to participate. We will have to establish quotas of participants per parish, diocese and country. Youth employment, improving yields in smallholder agriculture, deepening people’s roots in the trust of Christ, finding the impetus to deepen evangelization, are some of the challenges young people face throughout the region. These and other topics will be included in the workshops proposed during the afternoon of the meeting.