YOUTH DAY at the
Religious Education Congress
February 20, 2020
Held at the Anaheim Convention Center, 800 West Katella Ave., Anaheim, Calif. (just across from Disneyland).
Find more of our Youth Day videos on our YouTube page
Welcome!Youth Day opens the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress and draws more than 12,000 young people from across the Archdiocese and beyond. This annual event is planned by young people, for young people. Young people will have the opportunity to experience speakers, exhibits, music, liturgy, and prayer that invite them deeper into their relationship with Christ. Young people will leave inspired and challenged to live as missionary disciples in their homes, schools, parishes and communities.
Who Can Attend?
Youth Day is designed for all students from public and Catholic schools, grades 9 through 12. Unfortunately, young people in 8th grade or those who have already graduated high school are not permitted to attend. Young people must register as part of a group and be accompanied by a Chaperone at all times. Parents and Chaperones wishing to accompany young people at Youth Day should become familiar with the Chaperone Policies in advance.
2019 Theme and Reflection
The theme for Youth Day 2019 was Trust! God’s Gotchu. This theme was discerned by a select group of high school young people from across the five regions of the Los Angeles Archdiocese. They were challenged to create a theme that speaks to the young people of today while also capturing the essence of the readings. Our theme also guides our planning of Youth Day. It is infused into all aspects of the day – from prayers, to music, skits and reflections. As you prepare for the day, we invite you to read through the day's readings and look at the theme reflection here written by young people.
Youth Day & Social Media
Keep connected with us across all social media platforms. Find us @LAYouthDay on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. Make sure to use #LAYouthDay in all of your posts. We look forward to seeing the day through your perspective
Youth Day Videos
Be part of the #LAYouthDay team and watch for Recruitment Day Thinking of joining the #LAYouthDay volunteer team? Listen what @roypetitfils has to say about all those who have served before! Speaker Doug Tooke shares what he thinks of all the volunteers at #LAYouthDay. Speaker Bob Perron sees missionary disciples at #LAYouthDay. 1) Meet others who share our faith; 2) have a personal encounter with Jesus; and 8 more...
Youth Day 2019 Theme Reflection
The day's first reading gives as warning to those those who place their trust in others and not in the Lord. Like a barren bush in a scorching desert, those without hope in the Lord will receive no relief. However, those who hope in the Lord should not fear, for they will be rewarded. The passage reminds us that the Lord alone knows our struggles and will judge “everyone according to the merit of his deeds” (Rom. 2:6).
We see God’s judgment later in the Gospel as we hear the story of Lazarus and the Rich Man. Lazarus had little and suffered greatly throughout his life. Through it all, his faith never wavered. Though he sat at the door of the rich man’s house, he received no comfort or aid. When he died, he was carried away by angels and brought to a place of peace. The rich man also died but found himself in a place of torment. He had a vision and saw Abraham with Lazarus in heaven. He begged Abraham for mercy, yet Abraham replied, “My child, remember that you received what was good during your lifetime while Lazarus received what was bad.” The rich man begged for Lazarus to be sent to his family to warn them so that they would not suffer as he did. Abraham reminded the man that his family had Moses and the prophets, saying, "If they will not listen to them, neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead.”
These passages invite us to reflect upon our own trust and disbelief. In what ways are we Lazarus? In what ways are we the rich man? As those who have hope in the Lord, how are we being invited to deepen our trust in God’s goodness? In modern jargon, when someone says “I gotchu” it means that they have you covered and that you can lean on them for support. Our theme, Trust! God’s Gotchu, offers a message of comfort and hope to young people attending the day. It is a reminder that when we persevere in faithfulness, we will be rewarded. This theme is broadly applicable and transcends time and circumstance. Young people will discern their own faith journey and be called to renew their commitment to trust in Christ. They will leave challenged to joyfully embrace this message of hope. Whatever you are experiencing, whatever struggle or burden – Trust! God’s Gotchu.
New In 2019!
Youth Day Track Times: Whether your group likes to arrive early or beat the crowd and avoid traffic, we have an option for you. Youth Day will now feature staggered opening and dismissal times. Both Tracks will conclude earlier than in past years.
Location of Events: All Youth Day events will take place either in the Arena or in ACC North (the new Convention Center expansion). No workshops will be held in Hall B or in the older part of the Convention Center.
Workshop Selection: Your workshops no longer need to be selected in advance. All workshops will be chosen on site at Youth Day. Please make sure you are familiar with the offerings in advance. Workshop attendance is on a first-come, first-served basis.
Youth Day Registration: Youth names are no longer required when registering for Youth Day. With registration, simply enter in your parish information, the Group Contact information, the names of your Chaperones and the number of youth badges needed..
Youth Day Schedule
Though our schedule for Youth Day has changed slightly, both Tracks get an Arena experience with our Keynote speaker, a General Session and a Liturgy with Los Angeles Archbishop José Gomez. Each group chooses either the morning Arena General Session (Track 1) or the afternoon Arena General Session (Track 2). Please note that the Tracks now feature staggered opening and dismissal times. Track 1 begins at 8:00 am and concludes at 3:15 pm; Track 2 begins at 8:15 am and concludes at 3:30 pm.
Arena General Session
Arena General Session
Costs for Youth Day are separate from the fees charged for the adult days. The fee for Youth Day 2019 was $40 per participant, with special discount pricing of $35 being available.
Permission Slips and Forms
Group Leaders will need to have Permission/Release Forms on file for each young person and adult participant. These forms do not need to be submitted to the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress Office but should remain in your possession for the duration of the event. If needed, the Group Leader must be able to produce compliance records for each Chaperone attending the day.
Group Roster (to be kept by the group leader)
Safe Environment Compliance Forms (to be kept by the group leader)
If you reside within the Los Angeles Archdiocese, please refer to the following links:
If you reside outside of the Los Angeles Archdiocese, please contact your (arch)diocese's Youth Ministry or Safe Environment Office for the required forms.Verification of Attendance: On occasion, a parish or school may require proof of attendance. It is the Group Leader who should download and fill out the Retreat Registration Card, and return it to the requesting organization.
We encourage all Youth Day attendees to arrive to the Anaheim Convention Center before 8:00 am (doors open as early as 7:30 am). Participants from Track 1 should move directly to the Arena for the General Session. Participants from Track 2 should head to ACC North for their selected workshop.
Bus Parking: Parking is available in the Toy Story lot on Youth Day for $35.00 per bus (cash only). Bus drop off is also available. (Groups will receive a sign with their group ticket packet to be displayed in the bus window to help attendants direct buses for staging.) Traveling south on Harbor Blvd. your bus will turn left into the parking lot entrance. Heading north, you will turn right. Once parked, walk west on Convention Center Way toward the Convention Center. Buses are not allowed to drop-off participants at the Convention Center nor are they allowed to enter from West Street (behind the Convention Center). If your bus will not be parked at the Convention Center, let your driver know to return to the parking lot by 1:30 p.m. in order to be re-staged in the appropriate place. Please alert your bus company in advance of these directions.
All bus transportation companies must be licensed by the Public Utilities Commission of California. We highly recommend that you make sure your bus company is listed among the valid bus companies at http://www.cpuc.ca.gov/transportation.
Car parking: Parking is available in any Convention Center lot for $16 per car. It is recommended to park in the ACC North structure since it is closest. Young people should not transport themselves to Youth Day, and Chaperones who are driving must by 25 years of age and in compliance with all diocesan policies.
The Convention Center strictly prohibits catered meals and the delivery of food to groups. Groups are welcome to pack their own lunches; however, delivery of pizza, catered meals or other fast food is not be permitted. In addition, groups may not bring in any large ice chests or coolers. There will be many food stations around the Convention Center as well as food trucks and seating in the Grand Plaza. As a reminder, all young people must be chaperoned at all times -- this includes during lunch. Please be respectful to the neighboring hotels during the lunch times.
Volunteering at Youth Day 2020
Looking to get involved? Youth Day invites all young people to consider sharing their gifts in one of the following ways:
- Liturgical Ministries: Serve within the Eucharistic Mass as a cross bearer, candle bearer, gift bearer, altar server or lector. These roles support our ritual worship.
- Ministers of Movement: Youth who express themselves best through movement are invited to lead the assembly in gesture and prayer. This may include dance, liturgical movement and ritual gesture.
- Music: Those singers and instrumentalists who have a passion for performing are invited to join the Youth Day Choir. Please note that soloists and instrumentalists must go through an audition process.
- General Session Host: Youth who are confident speakers in front of a large audience are invited to audition. Roles include skits, storytellers, poets and those who provide narration.
- Workshop Emcee: Youth comfortable speaking in a smaller setting are invited to assist in introducing our speakers and presenters. These individuals will also be responsible for opening and closing our day in prayer.
- Social Media: Serve as part of the social media team to assist in capturing content and usable quotes.
- Spirit Squad: Serve as a member of the Spirit Squad whose job it is to pump up the crowd at Youth Day!
All youth interested into a leadership role must be registered for Youth Day as part of a group. Most of the above roles require additional days of preparation and rehearsal to be scheduled in advance. Youth volunteers must by chaperoned to all rehearsals. Any additional expenses -- including meals, lodging and mileage -- are the responsibility of the youth or their group and are not reimbursed by the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress.
Youth Day Recruitment Day: All young people interested in one of the above roles are invited to attend our Youth Day Recruitment Day (date TBA).
All Volunteers assisting with Youth Day must be over the age of 21 and in compliance with their (arch)diocese's Safe Environment Policies. This includes fingerprinting, attendance at awareness sessions, and proof of active participation and good standing with your parish community. If you are unsure of what is required by your diocese, please contact your (arch)diocesan Youth Ministry Office.
Volunteers interested in serving at Youth Day are asked to be available for the entire day beginning at 6:30 am. Your service will conclude by 4:00 p.m. All new and returning volunteers are asked to attend a Volunteer Meeting prior to the event as well as a morning gathering on the day of the event.
Youth Day volunteer positions include:
- Area Captain:: Those who are responsible for overseeing a specific area of space, such as the Arena or ACC North.
- Chairperson: Those who are responsible for overseeing a specific room.
- People Moving: Those who will assist with the traffic flow and crowd control during the day.
- Hospitality: Those who serve as a welcoming face to young people. These individuals may also be used to assist in giving information and directing participants.
- Prayer Team: Those who are committed to praying for the young people throughout the day.
About Youth Day – from the Youth Ministry E-VINE
The Office of Religious Education distributes the Youth Ministry E-VINE emailing, highlighting important information in the field of Youth Ministry for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Excerpts relating to Youth Day appear here. Additional information for the Youth Ministry E-VINE can be found at the end of the messages.
Sacred Space at Youth Day
Youth Day participants are invited to visit Sacred Space throughout the day. Sacred Space is a quiet place for prayer and personal reflection and features a variety of prayer experiences, which include a Chapel, Labyrinth and multimedia exhibits. Sacred Space is located in ACC North 151-152 (lower 100 Level). Hours on Thursday are 7:30 am-4:30 pm.
Youth Day App
Our updated Youth Day app is available at the AppStore for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch (requires iOS 7.0 or later). With this app, you can stay up-to-date with all Youth Day speakers, musicians and performers by following them on Twitter, viewing their websites, and even finding them on Facebook.
Youth Day is much more than just a one-day experience and this app will allow you to keep with you what each speaker and musician says long after the day is over, and check out their websites and find out how to put everything they said into action.