Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Culture and colour as Cross is carried from Rookwood to Parramatta

Today’s walk began at Rookwood Cemetary, where we were joined by several enthusiastic parishioners who helped us carry the Cross to Mona Park in Auburn. Here we stopped for a prayer stop before driving to St Oliver Plunkett’s Parish and School.

We were joined by many members of the Sudanese Community who carried the Cross and brought so much joy and vibrancy to our procession through their great singing! We continued walking until we came across a big group of WYD pilgrims from the Cook Islands, who just happened to be standing on O’Connell St, Parramatta as we came past. We stopped walking so these pilgrims could have a chance to carry the Cross. I was really overwhelmed by the chance meeting of these pilgrims, their enthusiasm at seeing the Cross and their great singing (with such beautiful harmonies!) After a little while the Cook Islanders had to leave us to go and catch their train, so the members of the Sudanese community once again took over carrying the Cross.

We had a chance for a prayer stop in the beautiful surrounds of the Parramatta Park, which I found a really peaceful contrast to the singing and energy and joy that had previously surrounded the Cross. Many more hands helped carry the Cross right up to Parramatta Cathedral and there were events that continued around the Cross well into the night. What an exciting day where so many cultures and pilgrims gathered around this one symbol – World Youth Day is really upon us!

Bernadette :)

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