Sister Clare Crockett and the story of her World Youth Day conversion

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Hundreds of thousands of people come from all over the world to participate in World Youth Day. In Rio de Janeiro in 2013, more than 2 million attended the event.

Often what attracts people is the figure of the Pope, the successor of St. Peter. At World Youth Day, you can see him up close and feel close to him.

Above all, it is an opportunity to listen to what he is asking young Catholics to do in the Church.

But I want trouble in the dioceses; I want it to go outside.

For the Pope, World Youth Day is an opportunity to encourage young people not to leave the Church.

Jesus offers us something greater than the World Cup—something greater than the World Cup! Jesus offers us the possibility of a fruitful life.

But World Youth Days also provides young people with the chance to share their faith experiences with each other. 

One of the most powerful examples was that of a young religious, Clare Crockett, during the 2011 World Youth Day in Madrid.

When I was 17 years old, I had a problem with was a pretty big problem.

This young girl from a small town in Ireland entered the congregation of the Servant Sisters of the Home of the Mother after having a very strong spiritual experience and speaking with other young people. She described how her life changed during a Holy Week trip to Rome when she stood in line to kiss a crucifix.

And I don't remember if I knelt or if I genuflected. I only remember kissing the feet of the Lord on the cross and I felt within me, at that moment, a very strong feeling inside me and that God was showing me that it was He who was on the Cross and that the only way I could console Him was with my life.

After joining the Sisters, she was sent as a missionary to Ecuador. In 2016, she was killed by a major earthquake.

But Sr. Clare's story is just one of the many from World Youth Day. In the most recent one in Panama, there were many testimonies of young people describing how their faith helped them overcome difficult moments. Like this young man who was addicted to drugs and he eventually went to prison. It was only through a Catholic foundation that he managed to regain control of his life.

I was taught to trust God and through Him, to trust others.

Stories like that of this young man and Sister Clare make World Youth Day an opportunity to rekindle the faith in the younger Catholic generations. Because there, they find the support of others and the inspiration of the Pope.



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