Rio de Janeiro 23 July to 28 July 2013.
More than fifty Zambian youths from different Catholic dioceses of Zambia have travelled
to Brazil on 9 July 2013 to attend the World Youth Day 2013.
These carefully chosen young people who are the ambassadors of
Zambia were seen off at the Lusaka International Airport by family,
friends, priests, nuns and various Church officials.
The official ceremonies of WYD Rio2013, with the Holy Father,
Pope Francis begin on 23 July and will culminate in a grande finale Mass, on 28 July,
at Rio’s Campus Fidei arena specially designed for this function.
What is World Youth Day (WYD) all about?
World Youth Day (WYD) is a gathering of young people
from all over the world with the Pope.
The main goal of WYD is to inspire young people with Christ's message. It is a meeting to build and strengthen the bonds of faith, friendship and hope, symbolising the union between people of different cultures and countries. WYD is a testimony of a living Church that is continually being renewed.
It all started in 1984, by Pope John Paul II. The International Meeting of Youth, during the Holy Year of Redemption, took place in St Peter's Square, at the Vatican. It was there that the Pope gave the youth the cross which became one of the symbols of WYD - known as the Pilgrim Cross, or WYD Cross; it is with the youth at every WYD. Since the youth received the Cross from our Great Pope John Paul II, it has been carried around by young people in a pilgrimage throughout the world, visiting various countries and parts of our globe.
But the Cross doesn’t travel alone. In 2003, John Paul II entrusted the youth with an icon of Our Lady. Since then, the Cross and the Icon have travelled together.
At the end of WYD Rome 2000, the cross was given to young Canadians by young Italians, in anticipation of WYD Toronto 2002. One of the young people receiving the cross said: “This cross has had a tremendous impact on all of the nations where it has been present. This was evident to me during the ceremonies when we received the cross from the Italians. They were extremely emotional, crying tears of sorrow because they did not want to give it up. We, on the other hand, were crying tears of joy because we were receiving a powerful symbol that we know will impact our nation.”
THE WORLD YOUTH DAY Rio2013
Main Events of the WYD 2013 Rio de Janeiro
The Main WYD 2013 events are composed of five separate events, which are at the heart of WYD Rio2013. At each of these five events, all the pilgrims will meet in one place, which will make for an amazing experience of unity and diversity. The five Main Events are as follows:
Opening Mass 23 July, Copacabana Beach
The first ceremony of WYD Rio2013 is the official Welcome to all the pilgrims from around the world. It will be the only Main Event in which the Pope will not participate.
Papal Welcoming Ceremony 25 July, Copacabana Beach
The second Main Event is the most anticipated event of WYD for many people. It is the first meeting between the Pope and the youth. Pilgrims from five continents welcome the Successor of Peter. As it is not a Mass, there will only be a prayer service to proclaim the Word of God. The local Archbishop will welcome the Pope.
Way of the Cross 26 July, Copacabana Beach
At the Way of the Cross, the final hours of Jesus’ life will be re-enacted. This is an ancient tradition of the Church, involving prayer, meditation and reflection on the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. The Way of the Cross is a time for remembering God’s love for us.
Vigil 27 July, Campus Fidei
All of the pilgrims will head to Guaratiba, west from the city center of Rio de Janeiro, to participate in the evening Vigil with the Pope. The place was especially prepared for WYD Rio and is called Campus Fidei, which means the Field of Faith.
The Vigil will be a great time of praise, worship and testimonies. From here, youth from all over the world will stay, pray and reflect on the mission that will be given to them the next day: to go into the world and make disciples of all nations.
Final Mass 28 July, Campus Fidei
This is the last main event of WYD. After sleeping at Campus Fidei, the pilgrims will wake up to prepare for the Holy Mass, presided over by the Holy Father, to thank the Lord for WYD Rio. On the stage there will prayers as well as artistic and cultural presentations.
The Pope will arrive in a helicopter and he will ride amongst the pilgrims in the Popemobile, making his way to the stage where the altar will be ready for the Holy Mass. He will bless the audience and send them out to the world for the missions that begin after the event. At the end of the Mass, the Holy Father will also announce the place where the next WYD will be held.
(Courtesy WYD secretariat; pictures on WYD courtesy of Communication department WYD 2013)