Father Wargacki grew up in the Roman tradition, the largest of the 22 ritual churches that make up the universal Catholic Church. All these ritual churches are united in communion with the pope.
World Youth Day is meant to be a pilgrimage, and a way of participating in a tangible way in the universal church. A highlight of the event is always the final Mass with the pope, and this year did not disappoint the 76 pilgrims who traveled with the group from Alaska.
When school resumed following the earthquake, first — grade teacher Lisa Orizotti brought holy water to her classroom. She told students, “If you’re feeling afraid, just come up and dip your fingers in the water and bless yourself. Thank God that we are safe and that God is in control.”
The Grey Nuns located their school in downtown Kodiak in a Quonset hut, and moved it to its present location following the 1964 earthquake and tsunami.
There is a quote I love from the Jesuit Teilhard de Chardin: “Faith has need of the whole truth.” That applies to our own lives, facing our own demons and denials, but it also applies to public life, and now more than ever, life in the church.
The popularity of the event stems from those it honors: not the big financial donors, celebrities or public officials. The event highlights people who do “small things with great love”