Youth 2000 is an international Catholic movement for young people, generally between the ages of 16 and 35. At their retreats, which are between 2 and 5 days long, teens and adults alike share their love for Jesus through the Eucharist, adoration, and praise and worship. It has been active since at least 1991 in the UK.
Youth2000 was started in response to St John Paul II's invitation to the youth to take an active part in the Decade of Evangelization leading up to the Great Jubilee Year 2000. In his address at World Youth Day in Santiago de Compostella in Spain in 1989, Pope John Paul II asked young people to evangelize each other by coming together, learning about and experiencing the love of God, saying "It is up to you young people that the task first falls of bearing witness to the faith and bringing into the Third Millennium the Gospel of Christ, who is the Way, the Truth and the Life" Ernest Williams, a twenty-six-year old IT specialist from England, was moved by the challenge and came up with the idea of Youth 2000, formally founding the organization in Medjugorje in 1990.
Whilst specific details vary from country to country, the main focuses of Youth 2000 tend to be as follows :
- Increasing the awareness and love of Jesus in the Eucharist, through Mass and Eucharistic Adoration.
- Promoting devotion to Mary as a means of coming closer to Christ, through saying the Rosary.
- Encouraging young people to read the Bible, get to know Jesus through Scripture and also to promote understanding of and fidelity to official Church teaching.
- Bringing about Christian conversion.
The Structure of a Youth 2000 Retreat
Youth 2000's activities generally include the running of both prayer groups and weekend retreats for young people.
In 2006, members of "Youth 2000" on visit to Father Kevin Knox-Lecky of St Mary's church, Glastonbury, attacked pagans by throwing salt at them and told them they "would burn in hell". Knox-Lecky apologized and said he would not invite the group again. The police warned two women and arrested one youth on suspicion of harassment.
- "CatholicHerald.co.uk » Youth 2000 offers gateway back to God". www.catholicherald.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-05-06.
- Youth 2000 - About ("At least 1991" is based on the "over 25 years" when accessed on 134 March 2016)
- "IV World Youth Day, 1989 | John Paul II". w2.vatican.va. Retrieved 2016-05-06.
- "Youth 2000 - Catholicireland.net". Catholicireland.net. 1999-11-29. Retrieved 2016-05-06.
- Ruth Gledhill (4 November 2006). "Bad vibes in Glastonbury after Catholics against pagans". timesonline.co.uk. The Times. Archived from the original on December 2, 2008. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
- Shaikh, Thair (2006-11-04). "Catholic marchers turn on Glastonbury pagans". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2010-05-22.
- Youth 2000 UK site
- Youth 2000 Ireland site
- Youth 2000 America site
- Youth 2000 French site
- Youth 2000 German Site