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It was like a calling to go and be closer

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Going to NCYC was a unique and beautiful experience. At first, I was nervous because there were going to be 20,000 people but then it all goes away once you realize that you are all unified and have something in common—your faith.

At NCYC you are able to get to know and talk to people from around the world. Not only that, but I was able to get to know the people around me better as well. The village was a good place to hang out and play games with others. One experience was when these two boys were playing songs on a kazoo. I made a song request and they obliged. It was the funniest moment ever. To be able to connect with people you wouldn’t have met otherwise.

Also, The Mass was indescribable. It was the best mass you will ever have in your life because it was very emotional to connect with your faith deeply. Especially when the pope talk to us, which has never happened before, at NCYC. Another first is when we were all praying together and they had Jesus in front of us. Everyone came rushing down to the stands to get closer to Him. It was like a calling to go and be closer. It was the height of the experience of my emotions because they played songs that truly showed us we were “Blessed, Broken, Given” which was the theme of the week. Not only that, but people gave witnesses on stage about their experiences with the faith. Their stories truly resonated with me because of how personal and relatable they were. They also proved that God is real and we shouldn’t have doubts. I learned and absorbed many things to keep Catholicism in my everyday life when things get tough. Overall, I am so grateful to have had this opportunity to go to NCYC and have this experience. I will cherish and keep it in my memories for the rest of my life.

Samantha Rodriguez a member of the youth group at St. Peter’s in Danbury reflects on his recent experience at NCYC.