“One image seems to dominate: that of the rather violent and ferocious wind and storm that rocked Downsview Park on Sunday morning, July 28, 2002. It was frightening storm that blew in from the west – a storm that nearly prevented the papal helicopter from taking off from Morrow Park. A storm that ripped off part of the roof of the largest stage ever constructed in North America. A storm that soaked the hundreds of thousands (+850,000) of young people encamped on a former military base and runway. A storm that drenched over 600 bishops and cardinals and even soaked the Pope as we brought him out on stage. As the four young people led the Pope out into the full view of the crowd — the winds were at gale force — it was the only moment during the entire event that I was somewhat terrified. Bishops had to hang on to their air borne mitres. Everything on stage was set to flight — books, music, altar cloths, chairs.” Comments by WYD Toronto’s national director, Basilian Father Thomas Rosica.
As in other “very terrifying storms” at large papal masses, they put a “good” twist to the terrifying storm; Fr. Rosica said: “For me and for many this was the wind of Pentecost that we hear about in the Acts of Apostles, Chapter 2.” I do not think that the Holy Spirit comes with destruction, unless that is if He wants to purify.
The original author of this blog passed away in July of 2016. RIP Father Carota.