Early morning woke the crowds, and I was able to find my group situated in front of the second to last tv screen. We were able to enjoy the closing Mass together. The theme of WYD is “go and make disciples of all nations”, and the Pope spoke on that theme. He challenged us from the first speech with regards to getting out there and evangelizing. The Pope has said that we need saints without cassocks, and what he means is that ALL of use can be saints…and should be saints! We should all be working toward that. Powerful words.
Later that afternoon I took a large part of my group to the world famous Ipanema Beach. It was fun just to see them have fun! They said Ipanema was more impressive than Copacabana, and I know they enjoyed it. One of the highlights was meeting the folks in my group and seeing them enjoy the WYD and all it offered. Sunday was a long day, and most were quite happy to hit the hay bales early.
At one point we saw a street corner loaded with bishops from all over the world. They were talking to folks, praying with them, and giving blessings. What a great ministry to see them on the streets with the people, so fun! It was encouraging since it was a reminder for me to get involved more and meet people where they are. Perhaps just wearing a CATgear shirt is a start in that it could spark a conversation about the Catholic faith. As one pilgrim told me, “hey, if that Catholic faith isn’t the faith then please enlighten me after you study and understand the Catholic faith.” Great point. Most folks who don’t support the Catholic faith simply do not understand it. Most of those folks have done zero research into the faith and yet the disagree with it. Hmmmm. Yes, I’d encourage folks to research a topic on the Catholic faith BEFORE disagreeing with it. Makes sense.