Mary arose and went with haste

By Rebecca de Souza

In this article, Rebecca, one of our Looking to Lisbon leaders, writes about what the theme of World Youth Day means to her.

Hi, I am Rebecca, and I am so excited to be going to Lisbon for World Youth Day this year. WYD is celebrated about every three years in a different country. The most recent WYD was celebrated in Panama City in 2019 and the next will be in Portugal in 2023. It was unfortunately delayed due to the pandemic but has only made the wait more exciting.

This is my first World Youth Day, and I am so happy to be able to go as a leader, joined by other young adults in the Diocese. We invite other young Catholic adults to join us at World Youth Day if possible, as it will be an incredible journey of faith.

This year’s theme is ‘Mary arose and went with haste’ (LK 7:39). This is a testimony of Mary’s desire to participate in ministry, proclaiming her delight and accepting the blessings of the Holy Spirit without hesitation.

Mary arose

Mary responded immediately as she was motivated by the needs of her elderly cousin and did not hold back.

She went with haste

Through this verse, we see Mary’s love as she thinks more of others than herself. She arises and sets off with haste, for she is confident that God’s plan is the best. In the same way, let us embrace the Lord and others whom we come across in life.

I am currently in my third year of university, and it is easy to get carried away and not actively spend time with Christ. Like Mary, I desire to do good things in the Lord’s name, spend time in his presence and embrace the Holy Spirit. I encourage everyone to do the same, especially in all the many difficulties and challenges we may face in the upcoming year.

World Youth Day is an invitation to proclaim our joy by the grace of the Holy Spirit through moments of prayer and sharing with other young people from all over the world. It encompasses the way of the cross and the vigil, which also allows us to demonstrate our desire to serve God just as Mary did. I desire to walk with Mary in saying ‘Yes’ to God’s plan and go with haste where he leads me.

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