1 – Feast of St. Junipero Serra

Canonized in September 2015 by the Holy Father in Washington, DC; according to Pope Francis, he “was one of the founding fathers of the United States, a saintly example of the Church’s universality and special patron of the Hispanic people of the country.” Read his full biography.

4 – American Independence Day

The annual Fortnight for Freedom reaches its conclusion on this day as we celebrate the birthday of the United States (July 4, 1776).

Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati in a joyful pose. © Associazione Pier Giorgio Frassati, Rome. Used with permission.Feast of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati

Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati is one of the primary patrons of young adults and many of the international WYD gatherings; in a special way, Pier Giorgio has been designated by the USCCB as a patron for all WYD pilgrims from the United States. Pier Giorgio was adventurous, committed to working for the poor, devoted to the Eucharist, and loyal to friends and family. Named by Pope John Paul II “The Man of the Eight Beatitudes,”  Find out more about his life and patronage on Frassati USA's website.

6 – Feast of St. Maria Goretti

Patroness of young women and one of the patrons of WYD Sydney (2008). Read Cardinal Angelo Sodano's homily at the closing celebration for the first centenary of her death, which includes a prayer to her from Pope Pius XII.

Feast of Blessed Peter To Rot

One of the patrons of WYD Sydney (2008). The USCCB's helpful website on the sacrament of marriage featured this man from Papua New Guinea as their Married Saint of the Month.

13 – Feast of St. Teresa of the Andes

One of the patrons of WYD Rio (2013). 


14 – Feast of St. Kateri Tekakwitha

Patroness of WYDUSA and Native Americans, and a young adult from North America who was persecuted for her Catholic beliefs, she was one of the patrons of WYD Toronto (2002). The USCCB created a pamphlet about this unique saint's life.

15-20 – Anniversary of WYD Sydney (2008)

You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses. (Acts 1:8) Read Catholic News Agency's article on the first day of this World Youth Day "down under."

16 – Feast of Our Lady of Aparecida

Patroness of Brazil and WYD Rio (2013). Read Pope Francis' words on how the statue became venerated in Brazil.

17 – Feast of St. Hedwig (Jadwiga) of Poland

Fourteenth century Polish queen, patroness of Poland, of queens, and of a united Europe. On one occasion, Saint Pope John Paul II addressed pilgrims from Krakow and included St. Hedwig in his address.

Pope John Paul II during his final international World Youth Day in Toronto in 2002.  CNS file photo23-28 –Anniversary of WYD Toronto (2002)

You are the salt of the earth. You are the light of the world. (Matt. 5:13-14) Read Pope Saint John Paul II's address to pilgrims at this World Youth Day.

23-28 –Anniversary of WYD Rio (2013)

Go make disciples of all nations. (Matt. 28:19) Find information, including the program, video, and texts from the entire event at the Vatican's website.

25 – Feast of St. James the Apostle

St. James the Apostle walked with Jesus in the New Testament, and journeyed with Christ up Mount Tabor to witness the Transfiguration with his brother John and Simon Peter. Through the centuries, St. James continues to walk with those who make pilgrimage, especially along the Camino de Santiago in Spain. He is the patron of all pilgrim travelers, including those journeying to World Youth Day 2016, and is the patron saint of WYD Santiago de Compostela (1989).  Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI wrote a message to the Archbishop of Santiago de Compostela on the Jubilee of Santiago de Compostela, in which he discusses pilgrim travelers.

Polish pilgrims cheer as Pope Francis announces that World Youth Day 2016 will take place in Krakow, Poland. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

26-31 – Krakow Two-Year Anniversary

Two-year anniversary of World Youth Day 2016 in Krakow. "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy." (Mt 5:7). 

31 – Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola

Founder the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) and one of the patrons of WYD Madrid (2011).  He is known for his spiritual exercises, that many still practice today.  For more about the Society of Jesus today and their ministry in the United States, visit their website.