Tonight, Copacabana Beach was packed again with young Catholics from all over the world, joining Pope Francis for the Stations of the Cross. In a change of venue, I watched the stations from Vivo Rio, the English catechetical site where I have been for the morning sessions with various bishops. There, the stations were streamed live with English translation by Salt and Light television from Canada. Even though it’s not the beach, it was still packed with pilgrims.
Mark also has been working hard in producing our third video, documenting our trip out to the WYD Vocations Fair, where many activities were set up to help the young pilgrims discern, or figure out, what God is calling them to do in life. Since being at WYD, I have encountered countless priests and religious on the streets, at WYD events, on the subways, and even in elevators. In this picture above we see just a small contingents of the young Jesuits here, members of the religious order to which Pope Francis belongs to. These Jesuits have faithfully served as guides and ushers at Vivo Rio for the last week. And in all these encounters, I find that I share a sense of closeness with even those who I cannot communicate with due to our language difference. In one occasion, I traded a look with another religious and immediately knew that we were thinking the same thing. What I felt is that there is a true sense of brotherhood among the priests here and throughout the world that is almost too difficult to describe in words. As a fellow seminarian I had met here at WYD tonight says, “we stick together.” How true that is. And how true that is that we support each other in order to live the mission of Christ, and be of service to others.