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World Youth Day


The observance of a World Youth Day grew out of the United Nations International Youth Year in 1985. Pope John Paul II encouraged its annual observance by Roman Catholics. In most countries of the Catholic world, the observance is held on Palm Sunday, but in the United States it is customarily set for the last Sunday in October. Every second year, at the bidding of Pope John Paul, the Vatican Council for the Laity in collaboration with the bishops of the host country has organized an international gathering. Young adults and youth, 13 to 30, from all over the world come together to witness, proclaim, and celebrate their Christian faith. The 1987 assembly met in Buenos Aires, Argentina; in 1989, in Santiago de Compostela, Spain; in 1991, in Częstochowa, Poland; in 1993, in Denver, Colorado; and in 1995, in Manila, Philippines. John Paul II was present at these gatherings, attended in each case by several hundred thousand young people. The pope addressed a crowd of over two million at the fifteenth international World Youth Day, celebrated in Rome, Aug. 1418, 2000, during the Jubilee year.

Bibliography: Bibliography: c. van der plancke, "La rencontre mondiale des jeunes Czeęstochowa et la construction de l'Europe," Lumen Vitae 47 (1992) 6166. L'Osservatore Romano, English edition (Aug. 23, 2000).

[b. l. marthaler]

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