Pilgrims Everywhere: UD Students, Alumni Attend Formative World Youth Day in Rio
"On a mountain, on a different continent, I ran into a seminarian from Holy Trinity
Seminary," said Shelby Flood BA'14, a pastoral ministry major from Denton, Texas.
The two UD students found each other amidst the mass of 3.5 million pilgrims from
175 countries who attended World Youth Day in Rio di Janeiro, Brazil, from July 23-28.
The mountain was Corcovado Mountain, home of the 125-foot Christ the Redeemer statue
Sylvia Whiteacre BA '10, who attended with Jason Deuterman MTS '13 and seminarian
Quinn Huston BA '13, was overwhelmed with the sheer number of pilgrims.
"It brought back memories of standing in line for Easter vigil at the Vatican," said
Whiteacre. "There were people everywhere."
Flood's favorite part of the six-day gathering was attending a vocations fair where
pilgrims participated in Eucharistic adoration using one of the six monstrances that
Blessed John Paul II blessed specifically for vocations.
"I was blessed to be able to see Pope Francis up close three days in a row as he drove
along Copacabana beach," said Flood.
Kneeling on the sand of Copacabana beach for adoration with Pope Francis was a pivotal
moment in the event for Whiteacre.
"The world tells you not to care about your faith, about being Catholic, but when
you're there in Rio with all those people, you get a feeling of encouragement and
peace that you are all headed towards the same goal: faith," said Whiteacre.
Photo courtesy of Jason Deuterman MTS '13.