The reflection was done by, Alexis
Sacred Heart (Kabega, Port Elizabeth)

“Planted and built up in Jesus Christ, firm in the faith” (Col 2: 7)

Pilgrimage linking peoples and broadening horizons

In his remarks during the WYD Welcome Ceremony (18/08/2011) at Madrid Barajas Airport, Pope Benedict XVI said that he hadcome to Madrid “to motivate the commitment to build up the Kingdom of God in the world among us. The discovery of the living God inspires young people and opens their eyes to the challenges of the world in which they live. They know that, without God, it would be hard to confront these challenges and to be truly happy.

World Youth Day brings us a message of hope like a pure and youthful breeze, with rejuvenating scents which fill us with confidence before the future of the Church and the world”. Young people were invited to anchor themselves in Christ so as to become an antidote to the “eclipse of God” so prevalent in society today.

Looking back over the last two months has offered some perspective on WYD11. On September 27, 2011, World Tourism Day, Archbishop Antonio Maria Vegliò, President of the Pontifical Council for Migrants and Travelers, stated that “tourism presents itself as breaking down barriers across cultures and fostering tolerance, respect and mutual understanding”.

That being said, approaching tourism, especially religious pilgrimage, with an open mind “can favour meeting as well as dialogue, as it places one in contact with other places, traditions, manners of living, and other forms of seeing the world and conceiving history. For all of these reasons, tourism is certainly a privileged event”. Two years of intense preparation went into ensuring that Sacred Heart pilgrims reap the fruits from this amazing privilege.

The parish pilgrims included: Shinay Terblanche, Roxaan Cain, Bianca Bosch, Russel Williams, Selwyn Goliath, Nico Bagley and Alexis Pillay. We intuited that we were setting out on an adventure of faith.