WYD Lisbon 2023

The WYD Vigil: being roots of joy for others and getting back up after every fall

Eucharistic Adoration at the end of the pilgrimage of 1.5 million young people to Parque Tejo-Campo da Graça


After nearly 10 hours of walking to Parque Tejo-Campo da Graça in Loures, young people who had gathered in Lisbon for the XXXVII World Youth Day, participated in the Vigil with Pope Francis.

The Vigil and Eucharistic Adoration celebrated together with the Holy Father closed the pilgrimage of the young people who, tired and fatigued by the heat and hours of walking, found restoration in the Pope's words and in silent adoration before the Blessed Sacrament.

What counts in life is not falling, but not remaining on the ground

“Let me ask you a question: do you sometimes get tired?” asks Pope Francis in an improvised and spontaneous dialogue: “Think about what happens when we become tired: we have no wish to do anything; we throw in the towel (as we say in Spanish), because we have no desire to carry on and we give up, stop walking and fall. Do you believe that those who fall in life, who have experienced failure, who even commit serious or grave mistakes, that their lives are over? No! So what are they to do? They are to get back up!  Now there is something very profound that I would like you to take away with you and remember: those who come from the Alps, who like to climb mountains, have a very beautiful song that goes like this: “In the art of climbing the mountain, what matters isn’t not to fall, but not to remain fallen”.

Before Eucharistic Adoration, choreographies recalling the motto of the Day “Mary arose and went with haste” depicted the story of a young woman who allowed herself to be challenged by God and how this changed her life, infecting all those she met. An encounter, the Annunciation, changed Mary's life and, consequently, the history of humanity. Then two testimonies - those of Fr. Antonio Ribeiro de Matos from Portugal and Marta from Mozambique - told of the joy of encountering Christ and the joy of bringing Him to others.

Cardinal Manuel José Macário do Nascimento Clemente carried the Blessed Sacrament in procession, thus initiating the silent and moving moment of the Eucharistic Adoration, and at the end, the young people remained, as they always do during the WYD, to pray and stay together all night waiting for the final Mass of the mandate.

06 August 2023
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