World Youth Alliance (WYA) staff and members attended the 2023 World Youth Day in Lisbon, Portugal, held from August 1-6, 2023. The event recorded an attendance of over 1.5 million individuals from over 140 countries. It included a youth festival, a series of exhibitions and seminars, cultural events, and religious gatherings with Pope Francis.
The WYA delegation was led by Lord Pomperada (WYA Executive Director) and Paula López (WYA President) along with the WYA Europe staff Myriam Audras (Regional Director), Ina Delić (Regional Director of Operations), Ramon Barba Castro (Regional Director of Advocacy), and Ermelinda Gjeci (Southeast Europe Director). WYA members and alumni from Croatia, Ethiopia, Mexico, and the United States also joined them.
Throughout the event, the WYA delegation conducted introductory sessions with various youth delegations and recruited WYA members at the WYD fair. An evening reunion was also hosted on August 3rd with former WYA interns and current Chapter leaders. At the conclusion of WYD, WYA recorded a total of 1,031 new members from over 60 countries.
A day before World Youth Day, WYA Executive Director Lord Pomperada spoke at the 4th International Congress on the Care or Creation held at the Catholic University of Portugal in Lisbon. Lord spoke at the morning plenary session where he shared about WYA’s work. In the afternoon, he joined the breakout panel discussion on youth lifestyle and politics.
Lord highlighted WYA’s Human Dignity Curriculum (HDC) and shared that the HDC “helps students to learn how to live according to their human dignity and stewards of the earth and other resources around us.” “Truly, the human person is the world’s most valuable resource. The potential of the human person for creativity and innovation is infinite. Hence, governments should invest in the human person’s development and flourishing,” Lord added.
“The care of human life from conception is of the utmost importance; we cannot speak of integral ecology without beginning with the care of life and the dignity of the human person. The work carried out by pro-life organizations seems to me essential for authentic human development,” shared Augustina Ortiz, a new WYA member from Argentina.
Ana Cecilia Limon, a member of the WYA delegation and current WYA Mexico National Committee leader, shared how happy she was to introduce WYA to the attendees. “Upon hearing about WYA’s work, many of the young people I met were excited to hear about a global movement that brings young people together to defend human dignity. They immediately signed the Charter and wanted to make a difference in the world by defending life.”
The World Youth Alliance wishes to thank the John Paul II Foundation for the Youth for inviting us to speak at the 4th International Congress on the Care of Creation. You may view the complete recording of WYA ED Lord Pomperada’s speech on WYA’s Youtube and Facebook.