It’s been a month since Staff Photographer Jeff Witherow and I attended the National Catholic Youth Conference. As I reflect on the experience, I can definitely say that the trip elicited varied emotions in me.
At first, I was excited about sharing stories of the diocesan teens attending NCYC. That excitement quickly changed to being completely overwhelmed when I stepped foot into the Indiana Convention Center. There was so much going on I didn’t know how we were going to accomplish everything we intended to do. I also became exhausted from working long days with very little sleep, and I began to question what I had gotten us into.
Being so focused on my work, I really hadn’t taken in everything that was going on around me. It wasn’t until the Blessed Sacrament was placed on the altar inside Lucas Oil Stadium and the thousands became quiet for adoration that I sat down, shut off the camera and prayed that God would give me some sort of direction as to what our purpose was for covering NCYC.
On our last night in Indianapolis, we went to dinner with the teens from St. Boniface, Blessed Sacrament and St. Mary churches in Rochester. It was through our conversations and sharing laughs with the teens that I was reminded what it was that brought us to Indianapolis. It was connecting with the young people of our diocese and showing an interest in the young church. I think we did that on this trip.
We may have not pursued every angle, found all of the diocesan youth groups among the 22,000-plus teens or made daily posts on every social media account the CatholicCourier has. But we did accomplish our mission — creating an amazing NCYC multimedia project, which I encourage everyone to check out.