MANILA, Sept. 3, 2012—Organizers of the 27th World Youth Day (WYD) in Rio de Janeiro have already opened the registration for pilgrim groups who want to participate in the once-in-two-years youth gathering with the Holy Father.
Registration of pilgrims is processed online through http://www.rio2013.com, which is the official website of WYD 2013, set to take place from July 23 to 28. There are separate registrations for bishops and journalists who are also attending the event.
But Filipinos who want to join the official Philippine delegation to the WYD, under the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Youth (ECY), need not register by themselves. The ECY, through the National Secretariat for Youth Apostolate, will be the one to register the pilgrims who will attend the WYD together with the ECY-Philippines delegation.
Official country representative
The ECY has issued last week an eight-page primer about the WYD 2013 and the ECY-Philippines delegation, which is considered an official country delegation by WYD organizers in Vatican and in Brazil.
According to ECY executive secretary Fr. Conegundo Garganta, registration of pilgrim groups for the ECY-Philippines delegation is already on going and will end on October 5. Registration of individual pilgrims will start on October 5 and will end on January 31.
“It is the ECY that will process the registration of the group and individual delegates who will join the ECY-Philippines delegation,” he said.
As in the previous WYDs, the ECY screens pilgrims and processes visa application as required by the host country. It also conducts pre-departure orientation and re-entry sessions for its pilgrim-delegates to help them maximize their WYD experience.
“Joining the ECY-Philippines helps prepare the delegation to be properly guided and directed. It also promotes a kind of participation that assures delegates of WYD experiences that are measured pastorally,” Garganta said.
Garganta admitted that the ECY expects lesser Filipinos to participate in the upcoming WYD considering the financial requirement of the pilgrimage.
Based on ECY’s estimate, a pilgrim travelling from Manila to Rio de Janeiro would spend $2,300 to $2,500 for airfare. This excludes the participation cost ranging from $365 for those attending only the WYD week in Rio de Janeiro, to $465 for those also attending the Missionary Week in dioceses outside Rio de Janeiro from July 17 to 20.
Last year, the ECY-Philippines delegation has more than 400 members, each of whom spent more or less $2,000 for their airfare and registration costs.
But Garganta assured the pilgrims who will be part of the ECY-Philippines delegation that the ECY is trying to lower the expenses in joining the WYD. He invited interested participants to join the ECY-Philippines delegation so that the bigger the delegation turns out, the bigger discount the delegation can avail from the ECY’s official travel agent.
“Part of our agreement is that we travel as a group and share a common itinerary. This is a condition of the carrier for our request of discounted airfare,” he added. (YouthPinoy)
Read more at http://youthpinoy.com/brazil-starts-pilgrim-registration-for-wyd-2013/