From 1 till 7pm, DCYIA hosted a Conference “Walking with Jesus in Faith ” at the Augustinian College in the Vatican. We had four sign languages: English, Spanish, Italian, and German for two permanent Deacons from Germany, one deaf, the other deaf-blind.
Our first main speaker was Cardinal Turkson. He is a very close assistant to Pope Francis. He was born to a poor family in Ghana, Africa. He speaks 7 languages including very good English. I was able to speak with him a bit before his talk. He was very friendly, humble, and very funny! He gave us a wonderful talk about how Jesus walks with us, accompanies us on our journey through life. Jesus never leaves us
So, we must be willing to travel with others, especially those who are suffering. Then, he said that being deaf means we have the same responsibility to do God’s work in the world. He was so enthusiastic and encouraging.
After the Cardinal, we had a typical Italian coffee break with excellent pastries and fruit.
We resumed with a panel of deaf priests, deacons, and lay people discussing their experiences in the Church, and how we can improve services for deaf people.
Finally, we had Archbishop Fisichella, the head of the Vatican Office for Evangelization.. His message was that everyone in the Church, including deaf people, have to let other people know about God’s love in Jesus Christ. Many deaf people do not realize that Jesus died to save them too.
By the end of the day, everyone on our team was exhausted, but thrilled that all our planning for three years had worked out.
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