Pope's 'joy' at consecrating Gaudi masterpiece
Pope Benedict XVI said Wednesday he was delighted to be consecrating Antoni Gaudi's architectural masterpiece -- the Sagrada Familia church in Barcelona -- during his upcoming visit to Spain.
"I will travel to Barcelona, where I will have the joy of consecrating the marvellous temple of the Sagrada Familia by the genius architect Antoni Gaudi," the pope said at his weekly audience in the Vatican in front of 7,000 pilgrims.
The famously unfinished building will receive the official status of basilica following the consecration and masses can be celebrated there. Currently only the building's crypt has been consecrated by the church.
The pope is set to visit the pilgrimage site of Santiago de Compostela in northeast Spain on Saturday and then Barcelona on Sunday.
"I will travel as a witness to Christ's resurrection, with the desire to spread his word, which offers the light for living with dignity and the hope for building a better world," Benedict said.
© 2010 AFP