A Novice Attends World Youth Day in Lisbon

A special pilgrimage began shortly after I returned from my novitiate in Chicago to Hungary.

This year, the 37th World Youth Day Meeting was organized in Lisbon. We joined the group through the invitation of one of the Hungarian Diocesan priests. The trip was organized by Erika Tornya RSCJ.

Here I experienced deep and enriching encounters and conversations. There is a great sense of gratitude and joy within me that I was able to be there, as I met numerous young people from all corners of the world, carrying the future of the world within them. The motto of the meeting was "He rose and set out on his journey" (Luke 1:39). The catechesis programs of the World Youth Day were built around this theme.

One and a half million young people took part in the vigil in Lisbon’s Tejo Park at the end of the meeting. Pope Francis encouraged them to "bring joy to others, because joy is missionary, and let us not forget that others have prepared us to receive this joy that is within us."

There was a special joy in my heart for the many graces I experienced, not only during the pilgrimage but also during my novitiate and with the many sisters from the Society of the Sacred Heart. We once again experienced that “We are One Body”, as we met with some of our sisters and some members of the Sacred Heart DNA group at the Vocation Expo in Lisbon. One of the most precious moments of our pilgrimage was our group visit to Fatima, where we participated together in the evening prayer and procession.

Katalin Simon, novice, CEU