World Youth Day began in 1984, when Pope St. John Paul II invited over 300,000 young people from around the world to an International Jubilee of Youth on Palm Sunday in St. Peter’s Square, Rome. As he saw how many turned up, he exclaimed, “Who claimed that today’s youth has lost their sense of values? Is it really true that they cannot be counted on?” Every Palm Sunday has since been designated as a World Youth Day.
The first official International World Youth Day event was held in 1986, and there has been one every three years since, rotating around the world with a different theme each time. Groups of young people travel great distances to attend, and it is always a truly spiritual experience.
You can find out more about World Youth Day at the official WYD website here!
The next international World Youth Day will be held in Lisbon, Portugal in August 2023. The Diocese of Dunkeld hopes to be able to send a group of young people to this event – check out the page here to see more!