Four months have passed since that day, and it continues to be one of the most rewarding experiences for the both of us. Although, we are a young married couple, we were leading different delegations to WYD this year. Despite our different roles, we were united in dialogue when it came to planning and especially praying for our leaders and young people. For those in the Diocese of Bridgeport, the journey to Poland was sort of a bumpy one with part of the delegation having to turn back after taking off. Unfortunately, they were forced to spend the night in the airport and leave the next day. For those in the Archdiocese of New York, one group became stranded when they missed the last public bus and had to find another way back to the hotel. These challenging moments taught us flexibility, patience, and, of course, how to communicate.
Cynthia - What I am grateful for: this was my fourth WYD and each one leaves a lasting impression, not only in my life, but also in my ministry overall. I am grateful for the opportunity to prepare the way for pilgrims to attend WYD, many of whom were traveling to another country for the first time. I love hearing their stories and witnessing how God works in their lives throughout WYD. It is inspiring to me to be able to share their faith and enthusiasm as well as their transformation upon the return back home. They know that they are returning as beacons for their homes and communities.
Evan - What I am grateful for: this was my first World Youth Day, and it was truly special for me to listen to different homilies and talks from bishops from around the world. One of the biggest blessings was to have our bishop, Bishop Caggiano, traveling with us and also to have him as our catechist on many occasions. I was invited to emcee at different catechesis sessions with the bishops. It was great to see young people from all over the world listening to and dialoguing with our bishops. I recall in one of the sessions that I was leading, a young man from Nigeria who was discussing with Archbishop Kurtz of Louisville the struggles he faced in his country. The man wanted to know how he could bring his faith to others. Lastly, I was grateful for the opportunity to represent young adults from the United States as a delegate on stage with our Holy Father at the Vigil.
We are both grateful for the words of our Holy Father, who continues to encourage and challenge us to leave our comfort zones, security, and ease. We take to heart his words in our personal life, marriage, and in our ministry: “Blaze trails that open up new horizons capable of spreading joy, the joy that is born of God’s love and wells up in your hearts with every act of mercy.” We hope that during this season of Thanksgiving, the blessings that were received during WYD continue to bear fruit in all of our lives. We pray that the zealous spirit rekindled during our time in Krakow continues to shape our world as we pray for peace and unity. May we continue to sing and acknowledge that Jesus Christ is our life.
Evan Psencik serves as the Coordinator for Youth and Young Adult Formation in the Diocese of Bridgeport
They just celebrated their one year wedding anniversary.