VIVA WYD 2016 VIVA!
We were rather anxious as to how many aspiring WYD2016 pilgrims would ignore the grey and rainy weather on this blessed Sunday afternoon and elevate our spirits with their presence at our 1st official World Youth Day 2016 Pilgrims’ Encounter. It would seem the rain might have stopped a few, but our chairs were full, we were happy and we had lift-off!
The encounter kicked off with vibrant praise & worship. The Spirit moved us all to sing, dance, clap and praise our living God, as we all jived to the sounds of guitar and drum bringing together worship favourites and “good-old” choreography. Even Fr. Rodney couldn’t help himself, lol! What joy to worship the Lord!
Following our uplifting start, Fr. Rodney George introduced himself and the WYD 2016 committee and offered some insight to all aspirants and parents regarding the meaning and purpose of World Youth Day. We were introduced to the selected themes in effect from 2014 to 2016. These themes are taken from the sacred Beatitudes, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (2014), “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (2015) and the official theme for WYD 2016 Krakow, “Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy”. These themes were introduced by Pope Francis in November of 2013. WYD 2016 event will take place from the 25th to the 31st of July 2016 in Krakow, Poland. We recommend a visit to http://worldyouthday.com/krakow-2016 which is the official WYD website.
A short video was composed of footage from previous WYD events which served a great advantage. All eyes marveled at the well-portrayed and dramatic scenes of prior years which certainly stirred a good deal of eagerness and made the dream of WYD more REAL. To add some extra ingredients, we heard testimonies from various pilgrims who joined the pilgrimage to RIO last year. So many stories, so little time! The aspirants could truly grasp the spirit, or rather Spirit, of WYD.
Fr. Rodney stressed the importance of attending MOST, if not ALL, encounters leading up WYD2016. Attending at least 80% of the scheduled encounters is compulsory for all pilgrims and this includes a weekend Pilgrims’ camp/retreat.
With such a vivacious 1st encounter behind us, we hope for and look forward to a blessed journey WYD journey ahead! See you on 25th May for our next encounter!
To God be all the Glory!