Krakow,Poland, will be the capital of the 2016 World Youth Day (WYD), Pope Francis announced before reciting the Angelus at the closing Mass of the 2013 WYD in Rio de Janeiro. After the WYD in Czestochowa in 1991, Poland , Karol Wojtyla’s country, will host young people from all over the world for the second time , in a meeting with the Pope. Today’s decision was received with particular enthusiasm by Polish young people gathered on the beach of Copacabana.
“Krakow and Poland rejoice to become once again a city and State of young people. We are happy that the Holy Father Francis announced that the World Youth Day will be held at Krakow, in Poland,” Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, Metropolitan of Krakow and former secretary of John Paul II said to KAI (Catholic news Agency in Poland) in his first comment.
ZENIT also asked some Polish readers for their comments.
“I think it’s a good idea that the 2016 World Youth Day will take place in Poland, that is, in Krakow. In particular we must know that in Poland there is also the present crisis of faith of many people, the greater part being young people. They are experiencing some spiritual crises. Young people are also stimulated by alcohol and drugs,” Kacper Kostrzewski, a high school pupil, told ZENIT.
“Thus it is hoped that with Pope Francis, with common prayer, we will be able to heal many souls. I believe also that this WYD at Krakow is a precious gift from John Paul II,” added Kacper.
For Dominika Majdzik the WYD at Krakow “will have a positive effect on the adherence of young people to the Church.” “I think that people can improve and reflect further on the faith,” she said.
For Father Piotr Rutkowski, the priest who works at the Marian Shrine at Wasosz in the Archdiocese of Czestochowa, “Pope Francis’ decision has awakened enthusiasm of faith and hope in many hearts.” “The WYD at Krakow is a great gift for the Church in Poland, but also a commitment that will open the doors of our homes, parishes and dioceses to young people of the world. It will be a great thing for us, because with the WYD we can unite as the community of faithful to Christ and to Peter,” stressed Father Rutkowski.
“It’s necessary to recall that in 2016, the 1050th anniversary of the Baptism of Poland will be observed , which will enable us to return to the roots and the sources of our faith,” added Father Rutkowski.
The Polish priest stressed that “the WYD at Krakow will make possible the participation of young people of Eastern Europe, as the WYD at Czestochowa already did in 1991.”