Print Edition: Feb. 22, 2015
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BY The Editors
I encountered my first World Youth Day pilgrims at the St.
Paul-Minneapolis Airport. We were all headed to Los Angeles for a connecting flight
to Sydney, Australia. One journalist, whose ticket is being paid for by
Register sponsors, was with 17 young men and women who have conducted car
washes, a raffle, sold used bikes, bagged groceries for tips, and sold pastries
after Mass to raise the money to fly around the world. Los Angeles was awash in
colorful T-shirts emblazoned with country names. A group of six Puerto Ricans
sang hymns at the gate. When flights to
Sydney were delayed 18 hours, it didn’t seem to faze the pilgrims. They prayed
the Rosary and a priest converted an airplane ticket counter into a makeshift
altar and offered Mass. Once in Sydney, I met 33 pilgrims who have had a much
tougher time getting here, though they come from much nearer by. They were from
Myanmar, and they said the main issues they faced were freedom of religion, and
lack of food, clothing and education. World Youth Day helps you count your
blessings. Tim Drake
is blogging daily from Sydney at the Register’s website Pope2008.com
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