Loretto Pentecost festival, Salzburg Cathedral
Nicky Gumbel spoke to 6,000 young people at the Loretto Pentecost festival in Salzburg Cathedral on Saturday 7th June. The annual Pentecost event organised by the Loretto community gathers young people from all over Austria and from neighbouring countries. Through Loretto, whose vision is rooted in prayer and the proclamation of the Gospel, Alpha and 24/7 Prayer are spreading across Austria.
During his talk, Nicky Gumbel said: 'If every Christian read Evangelii Gaudium and put it into practice, the world would be changed.'
Speaking on how we can have faith, Nicky Gumbel quoted Pope Francis:
'The salvation which God offers us is the work of his mercy. No human efforts, however good they may be, can enable us to merit so great a gift. God, by his sheer grace, draws us to himself and makes us one with him.' (Evangelii Gaudium, 112)
Nicky and the Alpha Austria team also gave a workshop, looking at 5 themes around Alpha:
- Evangelisation is most effective through the local parish
- Alpha equips parishes to go out and to reach those who are outside the Church
- Alpha mobilises missionary disciples
- Alpha engages and reaches young people
- Alpha creates a culture of pastoral leadership development
While in Salzburg, Nicky and Pippa Gumbel met with the Archbishop of Salzburg and Cardinal Schönborn.
On Saturday, the Cardinal celebrated Mass in the Cathedral. In his homily, His Eminence invited those present to pray for more freedom and courage to announce the Gospel. Following the Apostle Paul’s example, he encouraged us to pray not to be afraid, to leave our fears behind and to continue to write the Act of the Apostles today in our cities.
Clotilde Viry, who works with Alpha in the Catholic Church in Europe, said:
'I feel so blessed to have been in Salzburg for Loretto's Pentecost Festival. The atmosphere was incredible; the Cathedral came to life with such enthusiasm for Christ. What a joy to see such a young community from all over Austria, deeply rooted in prayer and authentically engaging with the Christian faith!'