Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Is it the same WYD?

It's not always easy to get internet access so posting is necessarily irregular. The big talking point today is the British media's response to what will probably be the best WYD ever. We hear it's reported that a war memorial was defaced. It's true but there's no suggestion it was done by the youth who've come here. Much more likely to have been the small but vociferous opponents to the WYD celebrations. Cardinal Cormac is due to give a talk tomorrow but he's had to be warned that the British media are flying out a victim of abuse now living in Britain. Unbelievable as the locals are saying.
On the ground things are fantastic! We had a superb opening Mass yesterday with a particulalrly warm welcome from the PM who really nailed his colours to the mast in defence of Christianity and the Christian - especially the Catholic - heritage of Australia. Cardinal Pell gave a heartfelt homily that touched the thousands of people present. The Mass was reverent and very prayerful - even allowing for the joyful enthusiasm of the young people.
Sydney has been won over. Everywhere we go people wave and toot their horns, we are thanked for coming and welcomed warmly. The local response couldn't be better. So waht's the local media saying? Well they found a taxi driver who isn't getting any trade. His response? "That's fine. I just like watching them. They are soo good". And a woman sitting in 'Hungry Jacks' who is disturbed by a big group of young people and nuns - "They look so cute"!
Whatever the British media might say, WDY Sydney 2008 is a massive success story. And having spent the afternoon in the prayer room and hearing confessions, I have seen that God's grace is touching hearts, breaking through barriers, and winning converts: Big Time!!!
I can't upload photos but I will. Meanwhile keep us in your prayers!


Alan said...

The Daily Telegraph, the UK's most respected organ, yesterday printed a colour photograph of ranked bishops, some mitred, some bare-headed, listening gleefully to the welcoming tones of a didgeridoo. Today's Metro, London's most widely read organ, showed a colour photograph of His Holiness, HE Cardinal Pell, and Mgr Georg Gänswein, stroking a koala, with the legend: 'Swapping the Eucharist for the eucalypt'. That is the sort of printed coverage we have in the UK. Unfortunately but quite expectedly, the coverage, both saccharine and sentimental, is minimal until controversy rears its ugly head. Alan

Southern and Catholic said...

I do wish I could be there. I'm feeling very envious right now Father. However, I will try to contain myself.

I hope it continues to be great.