Kraków, the second largest city in Poland, is visited by around 9 million tourists every year. Why do they come? It has a unique bohemian atmosphere, impressive monuments dating back to the Golden Age of Polish history, horse-drawn carriages on the Main Square and picturesque courtyards in the Old Jewish Quarter. There is also the spirituality of the Lagiewniki shrine, the legacy of the local saints and the influence of the sizeable student population. There is something to suit everyone. World Youth Day in 2016 was a great opportunity to discover it! You were able to walk the same streets as the young Karol Wojtyla (later Pope John Paul II), saw marvellous sunsets over the River Vistula, or got a closer look at the fire-breathing Wawel Dragon statue...
Young people discovered a place where the past meets the future and deep spiritual experience is accompanied by youthful energy and enthusiasm. Kraków was a welcoming place, the perfect location to fall in love with Poland and the Poles.
WYD Krakow 2016
In the summer, millions of young people ranging from 18-35 years old gathered together to celebrate World Youth Day 2016 in Poland. Pilgrims packed the streets of Krakow with their bright colored backpacks, national flags, joyful singing and contagious enthusiasm. The days in Krakow were filled international catechesis sessions, mass, adoration, praise, world renown speakers, entertainment and cultural events. It was fitting that in this Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, Pope Francis chose the theme "Blessed are the Merciful". Throughout the week, Pope Francis encouraged the faithful to stay close to their loving and merciful Father. To remain active and ready to witness to the gospel.
In the days leading up to World Youth Day, the Emmanuel Community hosted a pre-forum in Czestechowa. Thousands of youth enjoyed five days of fraternity, prayer, talks, discussion, mission and praise. The atmosphere of the forum was incredible with so much joy and excitement.
See you in Panama 2019!!!
"Attending the pre-forum this summer was a wonderful opportunity to already live out the spirit of World Youth Day. As a volunteer on the Mercy team, I helped to prepare and serve "behind the scenes". Even though we woke up at crazy early hours in the morning, and came home when the stars were out, it was so worth it! The joy and beauty of serving at World Youth Day is something I will never forget. Having the opportunity to attend daily adoration, mass, confession, talks, entertainment and of course.... coffee at the Emma cafe, made serving possible. It was only through these encounters with the Lord that I could really serve my brothers and sisters with joy".
Testimonies of participants
What and why?
20 - 25 July 2016
Pre Forum in Czesochowa (Poland)
25 - 31 July 2016
WYD in Krakow (Poland)
Vietnamese youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Slovenian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Slovenian lessons from beloved Fr. Janez, who participated in WYD in Krakow together with other youths from Slovenia.
Do you know how is his Polish?
What was going on in Portugal before WYD? Who won football match?
Polish seems very easy for them ;)
Who are the French participating in WYD in Krakow?
They are very skilled in Polish!
French youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Geography and language lesson from Ukrainians. God is surly with you!
Let's join them in prayers.
Thank you for coming to Poland!
Ukrainian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Portuguese youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Try to pronounce passage from Gospel of Matthew in Vietnamese and Polish...
Slovakian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Invasion of Slovaks at WYD in Krakow!
A bit cheating with message in Polish, but acceptable :)
Indian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Polish? Easy too!
Egyptian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Try not to laugh!
What do youths in Egypt do? Pretty busy guys...
Chinese youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Youths from China were preparing hard too. Where did they come from? China is pretty big...
Traveling from there is not very easy.
Canadian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Did you see Holy Door in Canada?
Great preparations for WYD were happaning there too!
Belgian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Beer and dancing events helped a lot Belgians to manage trip to Krakow for WYD.
Great job with Polish
Austrian youth at the WYD with Emmanuel
Super international group from Austria came to Krakow.
Can they all say one Polish sentence?
Good to have you in Poland!