Privileged and Blessed! That’s how I feel after attending the World Youth Day in Madrid, Spain.
My prayer before going to Madrid is for the Lord to speak to me powerfully. After that wonderful and life-changing experience in Madrid, everything seems different. The Lord hears every prayer for sure – because He planted a seed of hope inside my very heart.
Beyond Words if you’ll asked me to describe the World Youth Day. It was unbelievable!
From wishing to attend, waiting for the processing of documents and actually sitting with the other delegates from all over the world it was overwhelming and a dream come true. What seems impossible becomes possible!
Our stay in Sierra de Fuentes has been very memorable to me. I love everything about it – especially the people living in this humble municipality. At first it felt really weird to adapt in a new culture, the time difference, the food, the language and of course their way of life.
How can you survive in a Spanish land when the only words you’re confident to speak are Hola, Gracias, Denada, Siesta and Si! This might sound funny but in reality that is how it is. You need to connect with the locals even if you don’t speak their language and you know what, God made everything happened. I cannot explain how broken my Spanish was or how little they converse in English but the most amazing thing that was present in the scene is God. With Him language is not a barrier at all. We sing, we dance, we pray and we laugh together because the Holy Spirit is at work, God wants all of us to be one.
I love the Youth. Being able to bond and get to know them make it difficult to part ways. They were very accommodating and warm to accept us. They are very dear to me especially my good friends: Ivan, Aurora, Nadia, Irene, Montana, Asier, Juan Carlos and the rest of the Jovenes of Sierra de Fuentes. Their vibrant personalities shine brighter than the sun. They are loved.
And how can you not cry upon leaving the area when you need to bid goodbye to a great and loving priest in the likes of Padre Jesus Moreno. He exudes a man of faith and always desires for what is good for the youth. Padre Jesus swims, eats, walks, waits and looks after us every single day. We love you Padre! You will always have a special place in our hearts.
Days in the Diocese of Sierra de Fuentes are worth remembering.
The World Youth Day had taught me a lot of things:
La Gracia Ilimitada de Dios
It was God’s Unlimited Grace – nothing else.
He had planned this way before I actually had the desire to go.
I always look for the Vertical limit but I found nothing.
God has a limitless grace!
And He proved that when he brought us to Spain.
Be bold to Evangelize!
The first thing you need to know to survive in a foreign land is to learn the language.
Well at least the most important ones.
I love greeting “Hola!” to every people we see in the streets but when conversation time comes no words came out from my mouth.
The good thing is that God gave us the privilege to be with the locals from the area and He reminded me that I have something to say! Though I cannot fluently speak in Spanish but I have God living inside of me, then there is this urge to speak about Him to this people. And no matter how broken my Spanish is the important thing is that I was able to connect with them especially the youth.
World Youth Day brought me out of my comforts and really pushed me to my limit. My physical strength and patience have been tested. The long walk under the scorching heat of the sun is a challenge for me. But keeping in mind that we are in a pilgrimage and not a vacation really helped me to go on. Offering to the Lord whatever pain I’m feeling because at the end of every single day in Spain all we can exclaim was “Vale La Pena” It’s all worth it!
Take that step
God has been so good in my life! And He makes us able to participate in His work of evangelization and spreading His message of love to other people regardless of what nation, language and culture. He will use each and every one of us.
I was blessed to have the opportunity to sing during our last mass in Sierra de Fuentes celebrated by our beloved Padre Jesus. I was very nervous to sing in front because the song is in Spanish, I was afraid to make a mistake because the listeners are all locals.
And when I finally sing “Te Doy Mi Corazon” something weird happened to me. The song become personal to me, I realized that it was indeed the prayer that I have inside my very heart. This heart belongs to God and I am willing to give up everything for His sake.
And so now I pray to Him asking for His will to become my will and to purify me more while I’m serving.
My one desire (Mi unico deseo) right now is to be used by God to serve His people to the ends of the earth. Allowing me to see and be inspired by His Unlimited Grace, to be Bold enough to evangelize and to have that courage to take the next step.
Father, let me “Be the Change!”