Brooklyn Diocese World Youth Day Pilgrims Attend Mass at Fatima

Tags: Currents Brooklyn, NY, Faith, Family, Inspiration, Media, Queens, NY, World Youth Day, World Youth Day 2023

By Jessica Easthope

Pilgrims from the Diocese of Brooklyn showed up to World Youth Day this year as a sea of blue.

The Marian shrine at Fatima, Portugal, is visited by 6 million pilgrims every year.

On Tuesday, August 1, more than 300 of them were from the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Currents News’ Jessica Easthope caught up with Bishop Robert Brennan after Mass at Fatima. 

“It was so edifying for me as a priest and bishop to come down the aisle and see everyone in the blue shirts; Brooklyn is really well represented here and it’s very inspiring,” Bishop Brennan said.

He was on the bus with pilgrims from Brooklyn and Queens who said being there allowed them to reflect on their beliefs.

“I’ve been going with the flow in such a calm way, it’s been prayerful,” said Isabella Zegarra. “We’ve had moments of reflection. There are so many people that it helps you look into yourself, it’s the first day so I’m excited for more, she added. 

“It’s very touching,” said Anthony Decastro, another pilgrim from the diocese who is attending World Youth Day. “Although it was very crowded, it’s overwhelming because you saw where everything came from and it’s all original, all down to earth.”

Both Bishop Brennan and Father Jason Espinal, the pastor of Sts. Peter and Paul in Williamsburg, said the pilgrims have been focused on making a connection with Jesus Christ and each other.

“Sometimes you’re far at a distance but you still see them so well behaved, so reverent, so pious, and you see the fruit that’s working in their heart,” Father Espinal said.

“These are young people who worked really hard to get here, they’re not here on vacation, they’re here working and praying, we’re so proud,” Bishop Brennan added.