This will be my first WYD experience, which is a dream that started many years ago. When Rio2013 happened I spent all day watching the live broadcast. Back then there was a very special priest who I loved like a grandfather, his name was Danilo Villalobos Campos. I would tell him about how excited I was just from watching the TV and he told me about his WYD experience in Denver. He would tell me about how amazing it was to be part of it and how his love for God grew through it. I was really interested and he made me promise that one day I would need to go as a pilgrim to WYD.
He died the following year, however, I still had that promise on my mind. Due to financial reasons, I wasn't able to go to Kraków. Even so, I watched the events of that week on TV. When Pope Francis said at the end of the closing Mass that the next WYD would take place in Panama in 2019, I started crying and screaming excitedly. I called my mom and told her that I would be going to Panama to the next WYD. Attending WYD has been my goal for the last three years. I have gone through many situations, but I am thankful to God for my parents who have stood by my side, supporting me and not letting me go of this dream I desire with all my heart. I know it will be an amazing moment in my life. Together with my brother, who will be joining me on this pilgrimage, I will live this important experience.
Both of us are madly in love with God. We are very devoted to Our Lady, even more so as she is our parish's patroness. I am incredibly excited to live this madness of love for the King of Kings, my beloved Jesus, my greatest love. I am now counting the days until I have this encounter with God.
Paula Vargas, Costa Rica