Rio de Janeiro, 08/26/13 (Sodalit News – Brasil). The volunteers that poured in from Rio de Janeiro and all over the world to help out with the different World Youth Day activities were key for its success. Youth from the Christian Life Movement in Rio de Janeiro joined in on the effort in order to help insure that the events would go as planned. Here five of them share with us their experience.
“It meant putting into practice the charity that is necessary to be an apostle,” said Ingrid do Vale. Ingrid shared that she prepared herself “with a lot of prayer, faith and action,” during the moments that she was able to help. She tells us that her work consisted in helping in the pilgrim lodgings which housed the largest groups, but it did not end there. “In reality, whatever was asked of me was a pleasure to be able to help. It was very gratifying.”
For Ingrid, one of the greatest difficulties as a volunteer was the language barrier. The majority of pilgrims that she was asked to help did not speak Portuguese, but it wasn’t an impediment for her to, “get know many CLM members and see that our spiritual family is very big and diverse, all united by God.” Out of everything that she experienced, what Ingrid values most is that she, “was able to see what the faith gives us, and that with it we can change a lot about our world. I valued the love in charity and being able to take care of others.”
Ingrid do Vale
For Leandro Regufe being a WYD volunteer meant, “forming part of WYD as a host, knowing that my country was the home to millions of young Catholics for a week. I was aware that my volunteer work helped WYD go forward.” Leandro tells us that whether he was working as part of the support staff, or helping with the transportation of pilgrims around the city, he prepared himself through, “prayer and by putting on the WYD shirt every day, making it known to friends and showing that I was happy to be part of it.”
Glauce Camilo remembered constantly the importance of praying, “to be humble in heart, in actions, in words and in mind. I asked to be able to know how to withstand possible difficulties and to never leave somebody without help.” “I discovered fruits of conversion in myself, and I felt fulfilled serving in each passing day. Seeing that my work helped the pilgrims in many ways left me very satisfied,” said Leandro. He also explains that, “there were also negative aspects, mainly with the organization of information, but that it was merely a detail, one which will always be present when the challenge is great. And aware of that, I was able to continue cheerfully.” Leandro was particularly glad to have been able “to see the faith of young people from all corners of the planet and to contribute so that WYD could touch the hearts of millions of people.”
As head of the breakfast team, Glauce did “what was asked of her by WYD as well as anything else that came up during the week. The breakfast team was very good.” “The group of ladies [that were helping out] were very happy to be working with us, and they never stopped helping. God was generous with me throughout the work of WYD and really the whole time,” she added.
Leandro Regufe and Bruno Fernandes
“For me, it wasn’t work; it was a great pleasure to serve God and my brothers and sisters from all over the world,” said Singra Abreu, worked in the administration of resources and hostess. She had to “manage different schedules, as the pilgrims were not so good at getting home on time at night, but it all worked out in the end,” she remembers joyfully.
Singra also recognized that through her experience she was able to discover that her “faith in Jesus has come alive again. Having come to know other cultures, having seen the true faith of the youth from many different countries, and having seen the unity of the people from my city, as well as the teachings and catechesis in my parish were all rejuvenating for my faith. In the end, it was beautiful and emotional to feel Jesus present in various moments, having joy and respect for all.”
Bruno Fernandes helped organize the WYD catechesis that took place in the Nossa Senhora da Guia parish, and he told us that he also prepared mainly, “with a lot of prayer and by participating in the WYD vigils and other activities.” He especially treasures his experience of encountering “the Lord through the liturgical moments and through different people, both from the CLM and from other spiritualities.”
A few days after finishing WYD, the CLM volunteers participated in a Mass in order to give thanks for all of the blessings received and for the opportunity to grow in holiness through their service as a volunteer. Afterwards, a “churrasco” barbecue was organized where they were able to remember and share their stories along with different experiences lived before, during, and after WYD.
The Christian Life Movement arrived to Brazil in 1986, the year in which the Sodalit community was put in charge of the Nossa Senhora parish in the city of Rio de Janeiro. Since then, the Sodalitium of Christian Life also has established different communities in Sao Paulo, Petropolis and Aparecida, where it promotes different projects of the Sodalit Family.