“We are the servants of the Lord!” – the theme of the National Youth Day (NYD) 2019. It is a nation-wide celebration of the youth in the Philippines. It’s a week-long celebration with a variety of activities and events that highlights Church’s preferential love for the youth. The youth ministries from different dioceses and organizations, such as our very own Salesian Youth Movement, will lead the programs and undertakings of this celebration starting from the preparations to the actual event.

The NYD started as a proposal prior to the General Assembly of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines in 1986. It aims to celebrate a festival for the young people. It was a part of 3-year plan in involving the youth towards building a better Church and nation. Later on, his Eminence Jaime Cardinal Sin, DD endorsed this to the CBCP General Assembly and it received unanimous approval.This is the 10th NYD here in the Philippines since the first one in 1999 at the Archdiocese of Manila. The previous NYD’s included the Archdiocese of Manila, Balanga, Lipa, Palo, Bacolod, Davao, Tuguegarao and Zamboanga.

What makes this NYD special is that, it takes place within the 2019 – The Year of the Youth, which is part of the 9-year novena in the preparation of the Jubilee of 2021, the 500th anniversary of the Christian Faith here in the Philippines. Also, it’s held here in our very own Cebu, the start of our faith here in the Philippines. Pilgrims from all over the Philippines will get to further appreciate the Señor Santo Niño, the young Jesus, who is the model of the young people.

The Archdiocese of Cebu is the host of the NYD 2019. It will have more than 17,000 involved participants from all over the Philippines. There will be many simultaneous activities in the different festival sites and host parishes. It will be from April 23 – 28, 2019. It will be a momentous event not only for the Church of Cebu, but for the whole Philippines.