Lisbon: World Youth Day Opening Mass• Aug 2nd, 2023

2 August 2023

Source: Vatican News/ICN

Lisbon’s Edward VII Park was a sea of flags and international banners yesterday as up to a million young people gathered for a special Mass marking the start of the 37th World Youth Day. Cardinal D Manuel Clement, Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon, concelebrated the Mass with several hundred visiting priests.
Cardinal Clement warmly welcomed everyone, exclaiming “bemvindos!” (welcome) as he opened the Mass. He centred his homily around this year’s theme, “Mary arose and went with haste”.
The Cardinal emphasised that all present were on a journey, one that might have been challenging due to the distance, connections, and expenses required for the trip. Despite these obstacles, he emphasised the importance of embarking on such journeys, likening them to the journeys of life, where each day presents a new segment.
“Lisbon welcomes you wholeheartedly, and so do all the other lands in Portugal where you have been or will be,” assured Cardinal Clemente, offering a warm embrace to all those gathered.
For Janet and Paul from Ghana, coming to World Day is “An experience of a lifetime.” “We’ve saved up for this trip for a very long time” Janet told ICN. “We’re praying for all our friends and family who aren’t here.”