Last September 18th, more than 100 people answered the Archbishop of Quebec's call to participate in the annual youth pilgrimage. And the Pius X Secular Institute was in the forefront since the pilgrimage started on our grounds!
Since our retreat house, the Maison du Renouveau, was occupied by a group of nuns, it's in the empty building of our former print shop that the young and some not so young started their day. It was the first apostolic activity to be held in this building since the printing equipment was taken out. Maybe it's a prophetic sign that it is young people who come to use this building where so many young men and women have worked!
The organizers, following up on a demand from the youth themselves, had asked that the youth pilgrimage 2011 start out from the Pius X Secular Institute. It would be a simple means to better know the origins of Quebec's Archbishop, Bishop Gerald C. Lacroix, a member of the Pius X Secular Institute for over 35 years. And it is also in this print shop where he worked during many years.
After a short welcome by the organizing team, Bishop Lacroix launched the day with a short presentation of Father Henri Roy's life. Father Roy is founder of the Pius X Secular Institute. Bishop Lacroix shared with the youth how Father Roy, living at a time of great upheavals, was able to be a striking witness for the world of his time, because his life was given up "to renew all things in Christ". The Word of God shared within a team, the Eucharist, the total giving of oneself are a few of Father Roy's means so that Jesus be better know, loved and served!
With Claude and Jacqueline Gagnon - who met Father Roy 50 years ago - the youth were able to see a living witness of this prophet's impact for our time. Very simply, they entrusted to the youth the secret of their happiness: the joy of the Word when it is shared, Father Roy's inner fire that seduced them, and a love that is renewed day after day. Claude concluded with a word that characterizes him: "Life is really beautiful!"
Before starting off on the 16 kilometer long journey that would take the youth from the Maison du Renouveau to the monastery of the Dominican Missionary Adorer Sisters, from St Pascal de Maizerets church to St Charles de Limoilou church, from the chapel of the Jesuits to Notre Dame of Quebec Cathedral, they were able to go to the crypt in the Maison du Renouveau for a time of meditation in front of Father Henri Roy's tomb. In profound silence, the young pilgrims where able to ask, in a "heart to heart" prayer with Jesus, Father Roy's apostolic zeal.
Members of our apostolic Family accompanied the youth during the pilgrimage that ended after more than 12 hours of activities. This contact with the youth allows us to repeat Father Roy's words: "The world needs a spiritual revolution, and this revolution must be wanted by decided, loyal and generous youths who want, with God's grace, to renew the face of the earth." membres de la Famille apostolique ont accompagné les jeunes tout au long du pèlerinage qui s'est terminé après plus de 12 heures d'activités. Le contact avec des jeunes nous permet de redire comme le Père Roy: "Le monde a besoin d'une révolution spirituelle, et il faut que cette révolution soit le vouloir de toute une jeunesse décidée, loyale et généreuse, qui veut avec la grâce de Dieu, renouveler la face de la terre." May this annual youth pilgrimage allow us to journey in that direction, one step at a time!
Marcel Caron, ispx