Jerusalem (Agenzia Fides) – Over the past few days some 700 young people from the Holy Land have been making their way to Poland to take part in World Youth Day WYD 2016, the culminating events of which will take place in Krakow from 27 to 31 July . At the previous edition of WYD held in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil in 2013 only 30 young people from Israel, Palestine and Jordan were able to attend. This time the group includes 100 Jordanians, almost 200 Palestinians, ( Palestinian Maronites, Greek Catholic Maronites from the area of Galilee, a group of Catholics from Hebrew speaking parishes and a group of young members of the Neocatechumen Way, some of them from Cyprus Way. About 200 youngsters from Palestinian Territories – including 5 who live in the West Bank area – decided to recall their emotions and thoughts in a travel report which they have called George’s Diary. The key events noted in the shared diary will appear on the official webpage of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem.
George’s Diary begins with the first impressions of these young Christian Arabs as they near Poland. They describe the welcome received in Torun, where they will be staying as "overwhelming". Torun is situated in central-north Poland on the banks of the River Vistola. They realise that this journey will enable them to come together with thousands of other young people from all over the world. From Torun they write: “When the Polish people undertake something” the young travellers say on Day one in the report, “they go all the way! We believe that as Palestinians and especially as Arabs we have a lot to learn from these people. Values we need to develop include: a spirit of seriousness in work, genuine commitment, give first place to the good of all”. The report of Day One ends with a prayer of thanks: “Thank you, Lord, for the friendship and beauty we have experienced today. Give us hearts which listen, grant us peace, grant us wisdom that we may live these days aware of your loving presence. Heal our souls, we long for your peace”. (GV) (Agenzia Fides 22/7/2016).