The Australian Catholic Youth Festival (ACYF) is a national gathering of Catholic young people established by the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC). It exists to provide young people with an opportunity to:
- Deepen their relationship with Jesus;
- Be empowered to be disciples in the world today; and
- Encounter and celebrate the vitality of the Church in Australia.
Who: The Festival is offered for young people from Year 9 (in the year of the Festival) to young adults up to 29 years of age. Young people under the age of 18 must be accompanied and supervised by an adult.
What: The Festival provides a diverse program of informative workshops, integrative spaces and service activities for young people including:
- Workshops: with some of Australia’s most dynamic Catholic speakers;
- Student Leadership Formation: offering leadership activities and skills for schools and communities;
- Bishops X-Change: where young people, bishops and Church leaders discuss common topics of interest;
- Chapel and Sacred Space: containing multiple chapels and prayer experiences and Sacraments;
- Justice Activity Centre: inviting young people to contribute to service projects and outreach to the peripheries;
- Expo: showcasing the breath of the Catholic Church’s ministries and mission in Australia;
- Plenary: gatherings of all attendees celebrating the young Church in Australia.
When: The Festival is held every 2-3 years in the month of December.
Proposed by the Australian Catholic Youth Council, an advisory body of the Bishops Commission for Family, Youth and Life, the initiative was approved by the ACBC in November 2011. Previous events have included: