Teens can celebrate ‘Chicago style’: Event at Our Lady of Guadalupe Chapel in Des Plaines offers teens a chance to participate in World Youth Day and to praise, worship and pray all night long

By Michelle Martin | Staff writer
Sunday, July 17, 2011

Youth from several parishes in the archdiocese prepare to pray before starting the filming of a promotional video for World Youth Day Chicago Style on July 6. They gathered at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Des Plaines, the site of the Aug. 20-21 event. (Karen Callaway / Catholic New World)

Teens from the Archdiocese of Chicago have another option when it comes to celebrating World Youth Day, one that costs all of $20 and will take less than 12 hours.

It’s World Youth Day Chicago Style II, which will run under the stars at Maryville Academy’s Our Lady of Guadalupe Chapel and Shrine in Des Plaines from 9 p.m. Aug. 20 to 7 a.m. Aug. 21.

Participants will have the opportunity to participate in devotions and prayer, including Mass, eucharistic adoration and the rosary, to receive the sacrament of reconciliation, and to see a variety of musical performances. Presenters and participants from the archdiocese’s many cultural groups have been invited, said Tiffany Swann- Covington, youth ministry coordinator for Vicariate VI and the coordinator of the Chicago-area event.

This is the second time the Archdiocese of Chicago has planned a local event to coincide with the international gathering, Swann-Covington said, and this time, it coincides with the archdiocesan Year for Teens and Young Adults.

The idea is to provide a pilgrimage opportunity for young people who cannot make a trip overseas. In keeping with that, those planning to go to the local World Youth Day event will be welcomed at the blessing and sending Mass July 29 at 6:30 p.m. at St. Mary Parish, 10 N. Buffalo Grove Road, Buffalo Grove. (See related story)

The last one, held during the 2008 World Youth Day in Sydney, brought about 700 young people mostly from Vicariates III and IV to St. Hyacinth Basilica on the Northwest Side for a daytime event.

This time, with more time to plan and get the word out, they are hoping for at least 1,500, with some young people coming from neighboring dioceses, Swann-Covington said.

A trilingual — English, Spanish and Polish — Mass will be celebrated at midnight, and participants will receive a “midnight madness meal” afterward. Throughout the night, there will be something for kids to do every hour, Swann-Covington said.

The original plan was to try to have the Mass coincide with the papal Mass in Madrid, but that won’t take place until closer to 3 a.m., when many of the adults might have a hard time staying up, and will last for several hours, possibly bumping into the end of the local event.

Even though organizers decided to have the Mass earlier and run on their own schedule, Swann-Covington said she thinks teens, who tend to be night owls, will enjoy the late hours.

“This is an opportunity for them to be out all night at an overnight event with permission,” she said.

While the local event should be a fun and spiritually fulfilling experience, Swann-Covington said that she hopes it inspires some participants to start planning to go to the next international event, which is expected to take place in three years.

“If this gets them excited, they’ll have time to do the preparation and the fundraising,” she said.

It also provides a progression of sorts. Nearly all the participants in World Youth Day Chicago Style are expected to be teens, with young adults providing lots of volunteer help, while most participants in international World Youth Days tend to be a bit older.