Today began with a trip to the Mercy Centre and Catechesis at Tauron Arena Krakow, for all English speaking pilgrims. Here we heard a variety of talks from a number of speakers. The group attended a number of talks including one from Sister Gaudia Skass of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy. Her talk centered around the importance of the cross and what we can learn from it, as well as encountering the love and mercy of Christ through pain and suffering. Then there was a talk from Cardinal Dolan, of New York, about the message of mercy and the history of Polish saints. There was also a talk from married couple Jeff and Emily Runyan about the sanctity of marriage and the calling to that vocation. Finally we listened to testimony from a former Iraq refugee who spoke about her families struggles creating comparisons to the current plight for Syrian refugees and the importance of reconciliation and none violent retaliation. The talks were all individual and all shared a heartfelt message that informed and educated separately, each teaching a different message to help guide pilgrims during WYD and in life.
After the talks all pilgrims celebrated mass together and joined in prayer, worship and song as a group. We then proceeded to have private adoration and confession, giving everyone the chance to spend some time reflecting alone. It allowed everyone to step away from the crowds and enjoy some time in private reflection, contemplating what we have learnt from the trip, from other people and also confessing our sins to help in our path of mercy and forgiveness.
The evening ended with dinner as a group and a rainy walk home with lots of chanting, singing, laughing and enjoying each other’s company.