Ed West from the Catholic Herald reported, that “A priest in the Diocese of Westminster has begun a campaign for London to host the World Youth Day in 2016. Fr Stephen Wang set up a Facebook group (click on the link to go to the facebook page), ‘World Youth Day London 2016’, to test whether there is popular interest in the idea. Fr Wang, dean of studies at the Allen Hall seminary in west London, said he was inspired after receiving an invitation to a group campaigning to host the 2015 World Youth Day in Kracow, from a pilgrim he had met in Madrid last year”.
Below is the statement made by Fr. Wang (from his blog)
We believe that the next World Youth Day, after Rio 2013, should take place in London and the UK in 2016. And we’ll be there!
There will never be a better time: post-Papal Visit, post-Olympics, the faith and energy of young Catholics here, the pull of the English language, and just when the faith in this country is being revitalised and renewed.
WYD has already been to Poland, France, Italy, German and Spain – it’s time to come to the UK!
London would be the hub and the focus for the main events and the final Mass – not many cities can compare in terms of venues, open spaces, vitality, cosmopolitan life, culture, history, public transport, food possibilities, entertainment, media connections, and the diversity of people and communities, etc. This is why we won the Olympics.
Then, from a Catholic perspective, there is the sheer number of Catholic parishes, communities and movements in such a concentrated space. And not many cities are home to three Catholic dioceses.
But the whole of the UK (and perhaps Ireland too) would be involved, especially in the week long time of ‘Days in the Dioceses’ beforehand, with every diocese and parish in the land hosting people and joining in the hospitality and celebration.