What is WYD?
WYD stands for World Youth Day, a youth-oriented even founded and established by the Catholic Church. This is a celebration of the Catholic faith but is highly invitational to all catholic youths and others of religious convictions all around the world. The event was first conceptualized and initiated in 1985 by Pope John Paul II.
How is World Youth Day celebrated?
The annual celebration of this event is based on a diocesan level. However, there is a week-long journey and celebration which includes international participants every two to three years. There are different locations chosen for the international level event celebration. This is considered one of the biggest gatherings in the Catholic Church which attracts thousands of youths from different and almost all countries in the world. The event is also one of the major upsurges that advocate Catholic Youth Work. Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta is the patron saint of the WYD.
What started this global celebration of faith?
Pope John Paul II is instrumental to the creation of this event. He launched his pontificate – WYD as a signature campaign which would draw millions of youths on pilgrimage to different parts of the country. This includes Europe, North and Latin America, Asia and Oceania. The inspiration behind the creation of the event was his personal and vocational journey with the young people. His papal pilgrimages around the world have convinced him that one of the most effective pastoral strategies is through the accompaniment of the youth especially for evangelization.
What are known traditions of the event?
The highlighted and popular tradition is the presence and unity of youths from different countries and cultures. Thus, there are national flags displayed in the main venue of the event to emphasize their attendance and proclamation of their Catholicism. There are singing, dancing, and celebration of the Holy Eucharist and trading of souvenirs among the participants.