Young Inmates Create Pope’s World Youth Day Pastoral Staff in a Prison ! Workshop
Panama. January 10, 2019. A group of four young inmates have constructed a pastoral staff, as a gift for the Holy Father in honor of his visit to the Las Garzas de Pacora Juvenile Detention Center on Friday, January 25.
!Pope Francis will visit the detention center to celebrate a penitential liturgy and hear the confessions of some of the inmates. A group of young men, between the ages of 17 and 25, created the staff as a way show their gratitude for the Pope’s gesture.
!The staff created by Pacora's young people is made of wood and consists of four, 18-inch sections. According to the project supervisor, Father Domingo Escobar, The young men were able to construct the gift thanks to skills they acquired in one of the center’s resocialization programs.
!The design includes a carving made by the artisan Ubaldino Batista of Monagrillo, Herrera Province. It features the WYD Panama 2019 logo as well as a chain that is broken in the middle by Christ’s cross. This broken chain symbolizes the change that these young people experienced through spiritual conversion.
!World Youth Day Panama 2019 is incorporating contributions from other prisoners in the country. Inmates at the women’s prison have made religious items for the pilgrims, and a group from the men’s prison constructed 250 confessionals to be used for the Sacrament of Reconciliation in Panama’s Park Omar.