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National Celebration of World Youth Day 2015 [Free Resource]

Here's a photo of some of the WYD pilgrims from the Diocese of Brownsville with other pilgrims from Canada taken at the Heathrow Airport.With less than a year away to World Youth Day 2016 in Krakow, the excitement and anticipation for this world gathering is mounting.  The recent Holy Father's apostolic visit to the U.S. has also revved up the excitement among the young Church.  

It was just last week I found photos of my first World Youth Day in August 2011 in Madrid.  I reminisced of the pilgrimage to World Youth Day in Madrid with the great group of people from the Diocese of Brownsville (TX). It was my first international travel overseas and I was really excited. The week prior to the World Youth Day was spent visiting the beautiful sites of Lisbon, Fatima, Porto, Santiago de Compostela, Avila and Toledo. During the week of World Youth Day, the city buzzed with excitement for all the celebrations and most especially the Holy Father’s visit.

Though long lines and cold cuts sometimes conjure up my memories of World Youth Day, it’s normally images of large crowds of excited people clamoring to see the Pope. It was undoubtedly a powerful experience of pilgrimage, prayer, and community.  It also provided a glimpse of how large and diverse the Church is.  It's with the same excitement that I look forward to heading out to Krakow next year and celebrating the national celebration of World Youth Day next month on October 25, 2015.

About WYD

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What many people many not realize is that there is a World Youth Day message and theme from the Holy Father every year - though there may not be an international gathering. Recently the Pope Francis chose the first of the beatitudes as the themes for the upcoming World Youth Days celebrations.

2014 - Blessed are the poor in spirit, for they will inherit the Kingdom of God

2015 - Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God

2016 - Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy

About the National WYD Celebration

Though celebrated on Palm Sunday throughout the rest of the world, the United States celebrates the annual World Youth Day each year on the 30th Sunday of Ordinary Time. This year, it's on Sunday, October 25, 2015 but you can celebrate it when it best suits your parish/diocese.

Dioceses and parishes are invited to celebrate the young people in their respective communities. It’s a time to celebrate the gift that young people are to the Church.

To help you celebrate in your dioceses and parishes, check out this great resource, “Blessed are the Pure in Heart, for They Shall See God” Preparing for the National Celebration of the 30th World Youth Day written by Susan Searle. She provides you background information about World Youth Day, this year’s theme, ideas for sharing the news with bulletin announcements, ideas for your parish youth ministry, ideas for the Sunday liturgical celebration of World Youth Day, and more.

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