The Poor, the Pure, the Merciful: Pope Francis Chooses Themes for World Youth Days

World Youth Day 2013

The Vatican has announced this morning that Pope Francis has chosen the themes for the next three World Youth Days.

The Holy Father invites young people to focus for the next several years on the Beatitudes, the eight Blessings which Jesus explained in the Sermon on the Mount.  Specifically, Pope Francis chose the following themes for the three-year spiritual journey:

2014 – Twenty-ninth World Youth Day:  “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

2015 – Thirtieth World Youth Day:  “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”

2016 – Thirty-first World Youth Day:  “Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.”

Pope Francis himself will join the world’s youth at the 2016 event, the International World Youth Day which will be held in Krakow, Poland in July 2016.

According to the Vatican’s website,

In Rio de Janeiro, Pope Francis asked the young people “with all my heart” to read the Beatitudes again and to make them the action plan for their lives: “Look, read the Beatitudes: that will do you good!” (cf. Meeting with the youth from Argentina gathered in the Cathedral of São Sebastião, 25 July 2013).