Pope Francis greets an elderly couple at his general audience on Jan. 11, 2023 / Vatican Media
Rome, Italy, Apr 13, 2023 / 12:00 pm (CNA).
The Vatican announced Thursday the date and theme for the third annual World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly.
The event will take place this year on July 23, the Sunday before the feast of Sts. Anne and Joachim, the grandparents of Jesus, and the theme for the day, selected by the pope, will be “His mercy is from age to age” (Lk 1:50).
According to the Vatican Dicastery for Laity, Family, and Life, the theme is linked to the theme for World Youth Day 2023, which also comes from the first chapter of the Gospel of Luke: “Mary arose and went with haste” (Lk 1:39).
Pope Francis will preside over a special Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica to mark the grandparents’ day and has invited parishes, dioceses, associations, and communities around the world to celebrate the day “in their own pastoral context.”
The pope, who is 86 years old, has been an advocate for the dignity of the aging and has often emphasized the important role of grandparents in passing on the Catholic faith. He established the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly in 2021. Last year’s theme came from Psalm 92:15: “In old age they will still bear fruit.”