Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of September 9, 2002
Seeing the pope is event beyond words
By KRISTY-LEA WESTGEEST
St. Malo, Man.
A sleek black car began to appear in the distance. I knew it meant that the pope was just around the corner and would be in my sight soon.
I couldn't believe that I was only three people away from the fence where the pope would pass. With cameras in hand, my adoptee group and I had waited for hours on the grounds in front of the main stage. We all knew this may be our last chance to see Pope John Paul in our lifetime and didn't want it to be one of seeing him only on the big screen.
As I sat atop the shoulders of the strongest man in our group I couldn't believe what was happening to me. The closer Pope John Paul came to being right in front of me the more feelings and emotions began to well up within me.
Trying to explain the intense feelings I felt as the pope passed is almost impossible. As I looked upon his face tears that seemed to come from nowhere began to stream down my face. My heart deep within me felt as if it was receiving some kind of spiritual blessing.
The day's exhaustion began to wear off, the sun's rays seemed to cool, and I began to feel cleansed and renewed.
My heart was touched by the Lord's hand that felt as if it came right from the opened spiritual heart of Pope John Paul. At that moment, when the pope and I were eye to eye, I felt closer to God than I have ever felt in my life.
There really are no words in any language that could truly begin to describe or explain what I experienced. Miracle is the best word I could come up with that would describe what happened. It truly was for me a miracle.
I thank the Lord every day that I was blessed with that miracle. I know that is one event in my life I will never forget. I will cherish my World Youth Day experience forever.
Pilgrims in Progress
By Kristy-Lea Westgeest
300,000 of us strong.
We all are pilgrims in progress.
We suffered heat stroke and exhaustion during the day.
We prayed the night away.
It was all part of being a pilgrim in progress.
There was catechesis with Jean Vanier.
Music with rapping priests.
You could even catch a glimpse of Y.R.U.S.H.
dancing in the streets.
We were lucky to be pilgrims in progress.
We slept in churches, schools and gyms.
There was even the night we slept on the ground.
And were caught sleeping in a rainstorm at six in the morning.
It was OK though because we were pilgrims in progress.
Tears formed in many eyes as the pope passed by.
I was three people away and I'll never forget what I felt that day.
The Lord was near, that was for sure.
He was felt flowing from the heart of our beloved pope.
We were blessed to be pilgrims in progress.
Now we're at home again but our journey has
not come to an end, it has actually just begun.
We will take what we learned and continue each day to be
Pilgrims in progress!