World Youth Day

This year’s World Youth Day will be held between 23rd and 28th July in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.  Pope John Paul II was the man who established World Youth Day back on Palm Sunday 1984, when he invited the youth of the city of Rome to join him in Saint Peter’s Square in celebration of the Holy Year of Redemption.

The event proved to be an enormous success and because of this success and its incredible popularity, the worldwide event has since been held by the pope every other year.  Rome stages International World Youth Day two out of every three years, while it is held somewhere else in the world in the third year. Young adults and youths from all over the globe gather together in order to celebrate, practice and learn more about their faith, as well as to try to enrich it via their spiritual pilgrimage to visit the pope. 

A significant amount of time is spent by youth groups in the planning and preparation of this memorable and holy pilgrimage. Blessed John Paul II and Blessed Teresa of Calcutta have been designated by the church as the patron saints of the event.  The theme of the event that is the most traditional and widely emphasized is the presence and unity of a variety of different cultures, with people displaying flags and other national declarations in order to show their attendance.