On May 13-15, young people from different parts of Ukraine were on their way to Univ in the ХХІІІ International Youth Pilgrimage.
Читай українською: 7 ОСОБЛИВОСТЕЙ МОЛОДІЖНОЇ УНІВСЬКОЇ ПРОЩІ 2016
Even if they have only visited once before, people find time to return to Univ Holy Dormition Lavra of the Studite Rite, again and again, in order to find silence, dialogue, prayer and confession alongside many new friends and experiences. What has been special there during this year’s pilgrimage?
- Every pilgrim was given a guide book, “The Pilgrim’s Road”, compiled just for the pilgrimage to Univ. Alongside the route description, prayers, songs and the humorous instruction, “How To Spoil A Pilgrimage For Oneself”, the guide also contained a small quest, including different tasks such as: “Treat your neighbor to something tasty”, “Get acquainted with your group’s participants”, “Help your neighbor to carry a backpack”, “Pay attention to your animator”, “Forgive those to whom you feel an offence”.
- The pilgrimage participants walking on foot got wet and dried out not less than 3 times: twice on their way from Lviv to Univ and, for the 3rd time, during the morning Liturgy at 4.00 am, during the course of the night vigil from Saturday to Sunday.
Photo: Oksana Milian
- Every conscientious animator brought cling film for their group of pilgrims. The cling film was not only for wrapping sandwiches, but, also, to wrap around footwear and other belongings. This was to prevent a lot of items from getting wet and dirty in the mud along the field roads on the way to Univ.
Photo: Marta Mykolyshyn
- By the way, talking about sandwiches, on every one of the 10 itinerary destinations, the hospitable residents of the villages offered the pilgrims not only a place to rest but also tasty food. A lot of food! For the first and second courses, there were sandwiches and fresh milk in addition to buns, jam and pies. This year, the popular food for some young people was milk with a homemade rhubarb pie.
- The best dish, already in Univ, was a traditional Cossack kulish (a kind of thick soup), by which all the pilgrims were treated. There was also enough herbal tea and buns with a vanilla crust. For those who tasted it, they know how good it was.
- For the first time this year, there was a direct translation of the pilgrimage from Univ, conducted by Lviv Internet television, “Tvoje Misto”, with information support by the Christian youth portal, “DyvenSvit”. Several ten meter cables were pulled between the monastery walls, high-speed Internet from Peremyshliany, two commentators, one cameraman and one director were added by the organizational efforts made by the monks from Univ Holy Dormition Lavra and by the Lviv Society of Ukrainian Students-Catholics “Obnova”. Because of this, the pilgrimage has been watched even іn Australia!
Photo: Univ Holy Dormition Lavra
- Also, for the first time, at the pilgrimage site, refuse bins for plastic were placed there. The ecological character of this pilgrimage has been provided by the social initiative of the UGCC Patriarchal Youth Commission, “Someone will not do it,” and the Lviv company “AVE”.
What was YOUR most memorable moment during this pilgrimage to Univ?
The May youth pilgrimage from Lviv to Univ has been held since 1991. Also, every year, this pilgrimage is joined by new participants from cities such as Burshtyn, Yaremche, Stryi, Ternopil, Khmelnytskyi in addition to pilgrims from Belarus.
Alongside the pilgrims travelling by foot, there is also a simultaneous bicycle pilgrimage that leaves from Ternopil.
The slogan for the XXIII International Youth Pilgrimage «Lviv-Univ», considering that Pope Francis declared this year to be the Year of Mercy, was the Scriptural passage, “I DESIRE MERCY, NOT SACRIFICE” (“МИЛОСЕРДЯ ХОЧУ, А НЕ ЖЕРТВИ”) (Mt 9:13).
The pilgrimage organizers for 2016: the monks from Univ Holy Dormition Lavra, the Lviv Society of Ukrainian Students-Catholics “Obnova”, the UGCC Lviv Archeparchy Youth Commission, the Holy Spirit Lviv Spiritual Seminary, Public Formation «Skelia», the social initiative of the UGCC Patriarchal Youth Commission “Someone will not do it”; Malta Assistance Service; youth communities such as «Good Shepherd», Animators ВІО, САД, with the support of the Department of Internal Policy and the Department of Youth, Family and Sports of the Lviv Municipal Council, as well as the Department of Youth and Sports of the Lviv Oblast State Administration. Information partners: Internet portal “Tvoje Misto”, Christian Youth portal “DyvenSvit”.
Photo above: Univ Holy Dormition Lavra