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Apostolic Movement

Greetings from a WYD pilgrim for Covenant Day

By: P. Arkadiusz Sosna

Bem-vindos! Obrigado! (Welcome! Thank you!). No! This is not a Portuguese lesson. These are the words that were uttered the most during WYD in Lisbon. They reflected the overall atmosphere of the days and the encounters between young people from all over the world among themselves and with the Holy Father. These provided an atmosphere of openness, friendliness, and the joy of pilgrims on the way.

The words of Pope Francis still resonate within us: “It is beautiful to be together in Lisbon. You are not here by chance. God calls us because he loves us. God loves us as we are. God loves you. God calls you. Do not be afraid, be brave, go forward”.

In a time of conflicts of various kinds, these words were like balm for a battered heart. The young people, hope of the Church, were strengthened for the next stage in their journey of faith. And once again, they did not disappoint. In these few days of living together, young people from all over the world have shown that they put into practice the teachings of Pope Francis.

Offering the beacon of hope to the world

As a farewell, the participants received three words from Pope Francis: shine, listen and do not be afraid. Simple and clear words that give hope.

As we celebrate the first Covenant after WYD, we want to strengthen our lives in the Covenant of Love with the spirit of the Lisbon encounter. It is up to us at this time to offer the world the beacon of hope it so desperately needs. We must release hope from the shadows of our hearts. We must take it wherever fear over the future of the world paralyzes people. Just as Mary brought hope to Elizabeth and changed reality with her own gift. It is a time of sharing love.

This is a Covenant celebration, a time of listening to God’s voice. May the experience of communion in our Shrines allow us to hear God’s desire to invite us into the paths and ways of sharing love.

Do not be afraid, exclaimed Pope Francis

In the Covenant you are not alone. Do not be afraid. There must be no fear when we bear witness of faith. Let us ask, then, for strength and fortitude in the quest for peace. May Mary grant us all the graces necessary to change the face of this world.

May we all rejoice in the Covenant of Love and courageously set out on the way. Let us share joy because joy is missionary. May the experience of WYD Lisbon be translated into concrete attitudes and actions in our daily lives.

Então, vamos em frente. Then… let’s go!


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