So the novel Coronavirus has affected the whole world and things are totally different now. Things are very uncertain for a lot of people. We pray for an end to the situation. Our hope in Christ reminds us that there will be an end just as Jesus rose from the dead.
WYD 2022 in Lisbon has been postponed to 2023 because of COVID-19.
Some suggestions for how to keep faith in your planning for Portugal 2023 during these uncertain times:
- If you can, it is a good time to start saving. Even if you are not able to go, the money you save now will come in handy. Save money from all the outings you can’t go out on because of the ban on social and religious gatherings.
- Pray: essentially WYD is a pilgrimage. So it is always good to pray into it. Pray about your desire to attend the pilgrimage. Pray for the organizers and all other aspects of the programme. You could decide to dedicate every second Joyful mystery of the Holy Rosary (the visitation) to Lisbon 2023 since the theme is based on the visitation of Mary to Elizabeth.
- Start learning one of the five official languages of WYD: English, French, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese. Portuguese is recommended because it is the official language of Portugal. Interestingly, it is spoken in Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, East Timor, Equatorial Guinea, Macau, Cape Verde, and São Tomé and Príncipe. There are also Portuguese speakers in Venezuela, Guyana, USA, Japan, Malaysia, Namibia, South Africa, and Zambia. Check this out: https://worldpopulationreview.com/countries/portuguese-speaking-countries/
Duolingo (an app) is a great resource for learning Portuguese. You never know what opportunities may come up with learning an additional language.
- If you can, now is a great time to learn a new skill, polish up some rusty skills, or invest in a side hustle that can earn you some money. Which of course will aid your fundraising efforts to Lisbon 2023.
- You can also start a ministry to pregnant women, the aged, or the vulnerable in society. If during this time of social distancing, you cannot visit them you can support them with prayer, with money or any other support you can possibly give.
- You could do a bible study on the theme of Lisbon 2023: Mary arose and went in haste (Luke 1: 39). You could also study about women in the bible, about the Holy Spirit, about evangelization, etc. This is a good time to read the gospels, especially the gospel of Luke. You could also challenge yourself to read the new Testament, some books of the bible you don’t often read, or even the whole bible.
- If you have participated in an international WYD before, it is a good time to reflect on your experience and possibly document your testimonies from WYD and share them. You never know who you may be encouraging.
These are some thoughts on how to keep hope alive for Lisbon 2023 during this time of COVID-19. What do you think?
Source: Angela Azumah Alu//Sakumono