More than 17,000 free tickets to the Youth Rally & Mass for Life reserved within 45 minutes

January 19, 2010

More than 17,000 Catholic teens and young adults from around the United States will pack the Verizon Center for a Youth Rally and Mass for Life on the 37th anniversary of Roe v. Wade.

Friday, January 22, 2010
Verizon Center, 601 F Street, NW, Washington, DC

7:00 a.m.: Doors open
7:30 – 9:30 a.m.: Youth concert
8:00 – 9:30 a.m.: Confessions
9:30 a.m.: Rosary
10:00 a.m.: Mass celebrated by bishops from around the United States

Media entrance is 7th & F Streets; TV platform/audio mult on floor of arena. Advance registration encouraged.

This annual event has grown so popular – hundreds of youth had to be turned away last year as the arena filled up in minutes – that the Archdiocese of Washington issued tickets for the first time this year. All 17,400 free tickets were reserved within 45 minutes of online ticketing. To handle the demand, 13 additional Masses have been scheduled for churches in Washington, DC and Maryland to accommodate those who could not get into the Verizon Center event. Groups of young people come to Washington, DC for the event from all over the country. Most have spent many hours holding creative fundraising events to pay for their trip.

Catholic recording artists and composers Steve Angrisano, Jesse Manibusan and Ike Ndolo will rock the arena during the morning concert while upstairs nearly 100 priests hear confessions in the Acela Club Restaurant.

At 10:00 a.m., Washington Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl will be joined by cardinals, bishops and hundreds of priests from around the United States in celebrating Mass for the crowd. The homilist will be Reverend Lawrence Swink, parochial vicar at St. Pius X Parish in Bowie, Maryland.

Following the Mass, many of the bishops and the youth will participate in the National Rally and March for Life, which starts at noon on the National Mall.

Archdiocese of Washington parishes including St. Catherine Labouré Parish in Wheaton and St. Martin of Tours Parish in Gaithersburg will hold a youth Mass, dinner and a concert on Jan. 21, the evening before the archdiocese’s Youth Rally and Mass for Life and National Rally for Life on the Mall.

Archbishop Wuerl also will participate in the annual Vigil Mass for Life, Thursday, January 21, 6:30 p.m., Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, 400 Michigan Avenue, NE, Washington, DC.

The Verizon Center’s doors open at 7:00 a.m. All ticket holders must enter the arena by 8:00 a.m. when the doors will open to those with waiting list tickets. Bus drop-off is on F Street; Metro stop is Gallery Place/Chinatown. Food is available from concessions and nearby restaurants.

Media requests: 301-853-4516
Participant information

Susan Gibbs
Director of Communications
[email protected]