World Youth Day, a weeklong gathering of Catholic young people, has begun in Krakow, Poland. The festivities will continue until July 31. Pope Francis will arrive in Poland on Wednesday and will celebrate Mass with the pilgrims on Saturday and Sunday. Pope Francis will also make a visit to Auschwitz while he is in Poland.
Krakow was announced as the 2016 host city at the conclusion of 2013's World Youth Day in Rio. World Youth Day's next dates and location will be announced at the end of Sunday's Mass.
Attendance at past World Youth Days has ranged from 400,000 to over 5,000,000.
On Twitter, the Bishop of Rome tweeted blessings for those en route to Krakow for the event.
Dear young people, I bless your journey towards Krakow: may it be a pilgrimage of faith and fraternity. #Krakow2016— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) July 25, 2016