Young people across the US are preparing for the trip of a lifetime when they travel to World Youth Day in Krakow. Over 30,000 pilgrims from the United States alone have fully registered to travel to the event which will be presided over by Pope Francis.
Paul Jarzembowski, is World Youth Day USA national coordinator for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, He told Lydia O’Kane that the response has been incredible for the event.
“We have more pilgrims going from the United States to this World Youth Day than we’ve had to any other World Youth Day outside of North America, so I have to think that there is something about recapturing that spirit with St John Paul II, with the Jubilee of Mercy, with being able to encounter Pope Francis whom many of our young people are following through social media, the news and the read his writings… so I think all of that put together is getting people excited…”
But he also points out that although there are many young people going from the United States, there are those who will not be fortunate enough to attend the celebrations in Poland due to different circumstances. With that in mind, the national coordinator explains that even by staying at home young people will get a real chance to experience World Youth Day.
“We have in different cities across the United States, there are going to be gatherings… and then of course people can celebrate in their own home parishes and we’re hearing reports of perhaps one parish getting together with their young people throughout that week, each night gathering their young people to follow what’s happening in Krakow that day…”
For Paul Jarzembowski, he is hoping that World Youth Day in Krakow will an opportunity for young people to come back to the United States, not just sharing the Gospel but sharing it with a sense of mercy and compassion.
Dear young people, let us offer the world a mosaic of many races, cultures and peoples united in the name of Jesus! #Krakow2016