Reflections on World Youth Day 2023

What is World Youth Day? What impact has in made in the lives of young adults here in Houston? Tune into the Archdiocesan Podcast for a few episodes about World Youth Day, including a conversation with Bishop Italo Dell’Oro, CRS. Check out several podcast episodes on the Around the Archdiocese podcast!  Subscribe to the podcast for more excellent content coming soon! 

Direct Links:

Preparing for World Youth Day with Angie Pometto and Thalia Romero

WYD 2023 Recap with Bishop Italo Dell'Oro and Angie Pometto

Houston Pilgrims at WYD 2023

Bishop Italo Dell'Oro, CRS, and other Houston pilgrims share their experiences at WYD as covered by local, national, and international news outlets.

Shalom World | Experience a New Media Culture 

Around the Archdiocese (YouTube): WYD Reflections

Texas Catholic Herald (9/26/23): WYD pilgrims reunite to remember Lisbon’s ‘miracles’

Texas Catholic Herald (9/12/23): Called by name: Galveston-Houston pilgrims trek to Lisbon for World Youth Day 2023

Our Sunday Visitor: Powerful WYD keynote from Bishop Barron calls young people to conversion

World Youth Day 2023 Day of Reflection

Bishop Italo Dell’Oro, CRS, invites all young adult and adult pilgrims (age 18 or older) to join him at a WYD Day of Reflection coming up on Saturday, Sept. 16 at St. Dominic Chancery (2403 Holcombe Blvd.) from 9:30 am to 2:45 pm. This event will be offered in English with small groups available in English or Spanish.

Recordings from Bishop Italo's Talks are available here:

WYD: Our Encounter with Jesus (29 minutes)
Passcode: h#z6ki09

WYD: Fruits of our Encounter with Jesus (35 minutes)
Passcode: iK&Dz4Fa


WYD 2023

The next World Youth Day will be held in Lisbon, Portugal, in August 2023, and all young adults (ages 18-39) are invited to join the archdiocesan pilgrimage! World Youth Day is an incredible opportunity to deepen your faith and immerse yourself in the true universality of the Church by interacting with young Catholics from all over the world. Register now and take a full year to make payments toward the trip.

Registration is now full! The Verso website is currently only available in English. If you need help translating into Spanish, please call our office (713-741-8778).

Click here for pilgrim details about WYD 2023!

Our 4th and final meeting for all pilgrims will be held in person on Saturday, May 6th, from 8:30 am to 1:00 pm. We will meet at St. Joseph Church (1505 Kane St., Houston). Full details are available below. All previous meeting recordings are available at the bottom of this page.

For more information, contact the Office of Young Adult & Campus Ministry at 713-741-8778 or

Support Young Adult Pilgrims

Can you support our young adult pilgrims on their journey? Please consider making a financial gift to help the young adults as they make their way to Portugal to encounter Christ and his Church! 

Click here to make a financial gift to support young adult pilgrims!

The financial gifts help cover items like t-shirts, water bottles, and tradeable items that all pilgrims will receive. Gifts also help cover costs to ensure our priests receive a single room at the hotels and have all their travel expenses covered. Please help make sure our priests can effectively accompany the young people on this pilgrimage to help provide sacraments, especially Eucharist and confession, as we travel.

What is World Youth Day?

World Youth Day is an event that was initiated by St. John Paul II in 1985 and is meant to gather Catholic young people from around the world for several days of prayer, catechesis, and community. The event typically occurs once every 3 years, and the location moves each time so that pilgrims can visit new parts of the world. The pope always attends along with many bishops, priests, and religious from around the world. World Youth Day typically attracts anywhere from 500,000 to 2 million young people from all over the globe. It is a true experience of the universal Church.

What happens at World Youth Day?

There are several key activities that happen within the World Youth Day event.

  • Morning Catechesis Sessions: In the mornings during World Youth Day, gather with young people who speak your language for catechesis sessions led by bishops, priests, and popular Catholic speakers. These sessions include music, testimonials, Mass, and other devotions.
  • Free Time to Explore: World Youth Day moves locations with every offering as a chance for young Catholics to immerse themselves in a culture that is not their own. An important part of the WYD trip includes free time to explore the local city and learn more about the host country.
  • Way of the Cross with Pope Francis: During every World Youth Day, the pope leads WYD pilgrims in a meditation on the Stations of the Cross. This meditation usually includes a reenactment that reflects the culture of the host country. The cross used in this meditation is an icon of World Youth Day. 
  • Walking Pilgrimage: On Saturday of WYD, participants embark on a true pilgrimage by walking anywhere from 7-15 miles to arrive at the site for the Overnight Vigil. The hike is a moment of physical exertion that unites the modern-day pilgrims with pilgrims of Jesus day who would walk to Jerusalem for various feasts, especially the Passover. 
  • Overnight Vigil: With all 500,000 to 2 million pilgrims in one place, the overnight vigil is a true experience. Pilgrims from all over the world first meet for a moment of prayer with Eucharistic adoration, led by Pope Francis, followed by a night under the stars. 
  • Closing Mass with Pope Francis: On Sunday morning, join Pope Francis and your fellow pilgrims for the closing Mass of World Youth Day. This is celebrated on the same field from the overnight vigil. 

World Youth Day is a moment of encounter with the universal Church. It is truly a blessed experience that every young person should embark upon! Please join us!

When is WYD 2023?

WYD: August 1-6, 2023

Extended Trip (Madrid, Avila, and Toledo)*: July 26-August 7, 2023

*The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston is planning on also offering an extended trip that will include visiting Madrid, Avila, and Toledo. This extended trip will run from July 26-August 7, 2023.

Where is WYD 2023?

Lisbon, Portugal

The World Youth Day trip will also include a visit to Fatima, Portugal, where the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima occurred.

What is the World Youth Day Theme?

"Mary arose and went with haste."
-Luke 1:39

For more information, contact the Office of Young Adult & Campus Ministry at 713-741-8778 or