World Youth Day 2023 Begins in Lisbon, Portugal with the Opening Mass with Patriarch Manuel Clemente - FULL TEXT Homily + Video

The international World Youth Day (WYD) of the Catholic Church begins in Lisbon, Portugal on August 1st. Hundreds of thousands of young pilgrims from all over the world have been arriving in the capital of Portugal for the six-day festival. Pope Francis will also be there from August 2nd to the 6th.
SEE Also - World Youth Day Opening Ceremony with Over 500,000 and Pope Francis!
Lisbon Patriarch, Cardinal Manuel Clemente celebrates the opening service of the major event in a large park on Tuesday evening. According to the organizers, around 600,000 young people and young adults from 184 countries have officially registered as permanent participants in WYD. Most of them come from Spain, Italy, France, Poland, the USA and the host country Portugal. The official motto of World Youth Day is "Mary got up and set out in haste".
The Pope will celebrate several open-air services, according to the program, also offering a confession opportunity for the young people. Pope Francis will spend Saturday morning in the Marian pilgrimage site of Our Lady of Fatima. He wants to pray the rosary with sick people in Fatima and hold a prayer for peace.
Homily for the Opening Mass of World Youth Day
07/31/2023WYD Lisbon 2023
Dear friends who arrived here from all over the world for the World Youth Day Lisbon/2023
Welcome everyone! Welcome also in the ecumenical, inter-religious and goodwill amplitude that these days have and bring together. I want you to feel “at home” in this common house where we will live World Day. Welcome!
The Mass we are celebrating, awaiting the arrival of our dear Pope Francis, is that of the Visitation of Our Lady, the general motto of the Day: Mary got up and hurriedly left to meet Elizabeth. It is an evangelical step that also includes us.
Mass Video in English:

We heard it just now: “In those days, Mary set out and hurriedly headed for the mountain, heading for a city in Judah. She entered Zacarias's house and greeted Elizabeth. »
LIVE English Feed from World Youth Day:  

He got on his way, hurriedly headed for the mountain, entered Zacarias's house and greeted Isabel. Three points on which I will dwell briefly in this opening word.
Maria set off on her way. A difficult path and without the means of transport that we have today. And she was a young woman like you, who had just conceived Jesus, in the unique way that the Gospel relates.

You, too, set out. For many, it was a difficult road due to the distance, the connections and the costs involved in the trip. It was necessary to gather resources, develop activities to obtain them and rely on solidarities that, thank God, were not lacking.

From afar or closer, you set out on your way. It's very important to get going. This is how we must face life itself, as a way to go, making each day a new stage.

It is true that today, dear friends, many things can stop you, with the possibility of replacing true reality, which is only reached on the way to others, as they really are, with the virtual appearance of a world of choice.

A world of choice, in front of a screen and dependent on a click that changes it to another.

Virtuality keeps us seated, faced with means that easily use us when we think we are using them. Quite the contrary, the consistent reality puts us on the path, meeting others and the world as it is, both to admire it and to make it better.

We thank the media for allowing us to get to know each other better, ourselves, others and the world. We live mediatically and we wouldn't know how to live otherwise. We count on your support, but we don't dispense with walking by ourselves, contacting and directly verifying the reality that touches us and everyone.

It was worth the journey you took to get here and find yourselves these days, in the variety of who you are and in the quality that you bring, each and every one, from each land, language and culture. Nothing can replace this personal and group path, meeting everyone's path.

Mary was already carrying in her womb the “blessed fruit” that was Jesus. Christians also carry him, spiritually but really, because they receive him in the word, in the sacraments and in the charity where he offers himself. And since we believe in Jesus as the way to God, we walk with him to bring him to others. In the same impulse that led Mary, in the same Spirit that leads us. On my way!

Maria hurriedly headed for the mountain, as we also heard.

It is no coincidence that the text speaks of Mary's haste, as other Gospel passages speak of the urgency of proclamation, witness and permanent visitation to others, as we must do.

Dear young people, you know very well that when the heart is full, it quickly overflows. How impossible it is to suffocate what is in your soul, when it is really strong and mobilizing.

Mary carried with her the very Jesus she had conceived. And Jesus is “God with us”, to be God with everyone. Hence the rush to take Him to Isabel, even climbing mountains.

You know this “hurry”, because others also rushed to meet you to bring you Jesus and all that He offers you of broad horizons and life in abundance.

You don't even need to understand the words all the time, as happens now, among so many languages ​​gathered here. Because the eyes themselves speak and you feel safe and confident, in the Christian atmosphere that you create together and in the simple gestures with which you communicate. There is truly a “rush in the air”, which circulates among you and where you will arrive in these days. An air in which the divine Spirit himself circulates, with the readiness that only God has and communicates.

When I told Pope Francis that this was precisely the motto of our Day – Mary went hastily… - he immediately added that yes, hurriedly but not anxiously.

In fact, the eagerness is for what we still don't have and we want restlessly. Hurry is different, it's sharing what already takes us. That's why it's a serene and unhurried urgency. How did you get here and how will you be here, bringing to others what brings you to yourself.

By the way, I recall a passage from the first Christians, even in a society that was slow to understand them: “in the depths of your heart, confess Christ as Lord, always ready to give the reason for your hope to anyone who asks you for it; with gentleness and reverence, keeping your conscience clear…” (1 Pet 3:15-16).

So you will be, in this hurry without anxiety, like someone who shares what they have. What brought you here and what you will take is added by the grace of these days!

Finally, the text said that Mary entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth.

Dear friends, this is how you too will reach out to one another with true and joyful greetings.

The Gospel tells us of the joy of that encounter between Mary and Elizabeth and of the mutual recognition in which it took place. Mary's greeting was such that she elicited from her relative the exclamation that we so often repeat: "Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb!" And to Elizabeth's words, Mary responded with one of the most beautiful hymns we've sung since then, the Magnificat.

It is very important that it be like this with you and with everyone. In fact, every encounter we have must begin with a true greeting, in which we exchange words of sincere welcome and full sharing.

Lisbon welcomes you wholeheartedly, and so do the other lands where you have been or will be in this Portugal, also yours. You are welcomed by the families and institutions that have made their spaces and services available. Thanking them all, I glimpse in each one the house of Isabel, who welcomed Mary and the Jesus she brought her!

Much of this is lacking in the world we are in, when we do not care for others, nor do we pay attention to those we meet.

Let us learn from Mary to greet each and every one. Let us practice it intensely during this World Youth Day. The new world begins in the novelty of each encounter and in the sincerity of the greeting we exchange. So that we may be people among people, in mutual and constant visitation! - I wish you all a happy and stimulating World Youth Day!

† Manuel Cardinal Clemente

Patriarch of Lisbon
Source: JMJ Lisboa 2023