World Youth Day preparations continue

World Youth Day

Fr Namora Anderson, Luke Maher and Beth Doherty making preparations for World Youth Day. Photo Chris Gordon.

Preparations continue apace for the Archdiocesan pilgrimage to World Youth Day in Panama next year.

A group that included almost all of the pilgrims, along with some helpers and assistants, attended a preparation day at St Christopher’s Pastoral Centre in October.

Included in the day’s activities were preparing for the spiritual journey and to work through the logistics of the trip.

Luke Maher, REC at St Vincents in Aranda, described the meeting as productive and an important step forward in their journey.

“We’ve had two gatherings now,” Luke said.

“The first was really an information session and a little bit of a get to know you.  Then today, we went a little bit deeper.

“So we spent some time in some formation, looking at the scripture passage which is the focus and the theme for World Youth Day, which is the Annunciation.

“We sent some time in prayer this morning, and then spent some time looking at the tools that we would need. We also talked about some scripture passages that would be important to us.

“Then we got into some logistics. We are a hundred days out now so we had some paper work to sort out as well as an opportunity to look at some of the sites we’ll see – particularly our time in Mexico City at the shrine of Our Lady of Guadeloupe.”

New perspective

Fr Namora Anderson, one of the priests taking part in the pilgrimage, has attended previous World Youth Days but this will be his first as a priest and chaplain.

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“The roles may have changed but in the same sense I’m going on a pilgrimage also. We’re all journeying together to encounter the crucified and risen lord,” Father Namora said.

“So we’re all on the same journey, we’ll all experience the same experiences from different perspectives. It’s going to be a great pilgrimage and a great crew that we’re with so I’m really looking forward to it.”

Some 17 teachers will accompany the pilgrims, priests and Archbishop on the pilgrimage. World Youth Day runs from January 22 to January 27, 2019.

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