“The hope which is born in the Eucharist”, Holy Thursday 2022

Thanks be to God, everything was ready in time. The camp finally started this morning: officially around 11am, but many scholars where already there two days ago to finish the last preparations. You may know already, by reading the previous article of the Easter Camp 2022 series, that this year’s theme for the camp is “Anchored in hope”. We will have a total of three teaching on the subject, starting today with kuya Gerald who taught us about the “Hope which is born in the Eucharist”. But before I tell you more about that teaching, let me tell you more about the day.

As I said, the day started at 11am with the arrival and registration of all who joined the camp. The must at that time was the photo-booth. I let you appreciate some of the pictures we took for souvenirs in the next gallery. Scholars could pose with signs from Enfant du Mekong and SD scholars to show gratitude to the sponsors who make possible those activities for them. Following this we gathered in the San Damiano chapel for the day prayer. What a joy for me to see all those young boys and girls praying together, singing the psalms, and listening to the Gospel. Then of course, came one of the best parts of the day: the lunch. Again we are so lucky to have ate Cynthia leading the a great team of cookers to prepare some great food for us. Bellies full and tired from the heat, it was time to rest before the serious start of the activities.

In the afternoon started, the serious activities. At 2pm we all gathered in the teaching tent. Together, we entrusted our camp to the Virgin Mary by praying the rosary. Then we were so happy to have Brother Emmanuel (alias Brem) who launched the camp by giving us a spiritual introduction to holy week. He plunged us back into the Gospel by telling us the stories introducing Holy Week: Jesus in Bethany with Martha and Mary, the Last Supper, Mary at the foot of the cross. Through this he invites us to become close to Jesus, to continue faithfully to participate in the Sunday Eucharist, and also to look at Jesus in the Gospel to do as he does.

Then after a simple but good merianda, it was the turn of kuya Gerald, lay minister, to teach us. From all his speech I noted one question: “What do you do when you receive a grace”. Indeed, as we all attend mass for Christmas and for Easter, we can see that our faith has high times and low times. We attend mass at those time because the liturgy is beautiful, we have youth camps, because the fest is nice, and also because we receive particular grace during those moment. But when Easter passes we go back home and forget about mass and about Jesus. Kuya Gerald invited us to see in our lives, “what do we do when we receive grace?” It is to make us understand that it is not only Easter or Christmas that are important, but Eucharist and fidelity in prayer. Thank you kuya Gerald for your teaching and thank you Brem for taking time with us.

The day ended with the mass. Father Mark, from MSSP, came from Quezon City with two brother of his community, to preach the holy week with us. Today he celebrated the Last Supper. Like Jesus in the Gospel, he washed the feet of twelve people representing the 12 apostles. Very beautiful gesture and full of love. Of course, who says last supper, says bread and wine. We had the food, but for obvious reasons there was no wine on the table.

And because today is the commemoration of the institution of the Eucharist, we will spend the night before Christ in adoration. Every hour fraternities will relay to pray until early morning tomorrow.