This post was written on Saturday 23/7. I apologise for the lack of posting; I have had less time than I thought I would. I’m going to try to post more regularly but also let’s not make any promises as WYD is about to begin. Anyway, I posted this on Facebook and a lot of people liked it so here’s my reflection on the culmination of the Days in the Diocese.
Today was a real day of pilgrimage; it had highs and lows (both literal and emotional – we climbed a mountain and it was very physically draining) but it also really affirmed for me why I love World Youth Days so much.
Today we literally stopped traffic as nearly ten thousand pilgrims walked the streets of Opole During the pre-WYD Days in the Diocese celebration. Instead of being a source of frustration, the outpouring of positive energy and enthusiasm from the young people meant that we were welcomed with open arms. Bystanders were literally cheering and waving as we walked past. Many said hello, entire apartment buildings were filled with people who waved, clapped and cheered, and people even brought their doggos up to the window to greet us as we moved along.
There is honestly no comparison or analogy that does it justice. Perhaps it is like a major sporting event? Except everyone is on the one team, and the purpose of that team is to bring love and hope to the world. Thousands of people from across the world, all gathered for a common purpose.
I think it is also an amazing point about unity; unity does not mean uniformity. The diversity of over a dozen nations gathered demonstrated the richness of our faith, it didn’t degrade it. (Perhaps there is a lesson there for our politicians?)
My feet are sore but my soul magnifies the Lord; my heart is bursting with so much positivity, love and joy.