Dear JP2 Project Family,
Thank you all so much for your prayers and support during this time. When the Global Level 4 warning was raised on March 19, the Embassy in Warsaw, Poland told all US citizens temporarily abroad to make arrangements to return home immediately. After finishing their time in Krakow on retreat mode, with extra time for private prayer in the JP2 Sanctuary, on the same campus as the residence, some “family bonding time”, intensifying their theology course with our on-site co-director, Dr. Madden, and of course, struggles with impact of the pandemic on life plans, the last students returned home safely on March 29th.
Personally, I was deeply touched with how everyone worked together during this time. Even with the struggle, the students stayed strong and demonstrated more grace than they realize. It was also very encouraging (and a relief) to have the support of their parents, and working through this together. Then our staff: thank you, Lord. Witnessing how the Madden family took care of our students during this time was expected but nevertheless impressive. Then the last two students flew back together into Chicago, where our Director of Outreach, Mary Kathryn, was able to give them a warm welcome. Seeing how the spirit of hospitality, so important to our charism in the Project, was extended beyond the Project’s “home” in Krakow, was a truly a confirmation of how the Spirit is working. (By the way, this brings me back to all the hospitality our family received from you all when we toured the US with the relic of John Paul II).
Where are we now? While the our young people were still eager to come journey in JP2’s footsteps this year, the circumstances make it impossible. We had more people than ever signed up for our summer study abroad that we were considering if we needed to buy more beds in April to furnish the rooms before they arrived. As you know, most all universities now have cancelled study abroad for the summer- and some for the year- including those schools from where our students were coming.
Students: I know you are crushed, but keep your trust in Jesus and his plan for you. We are looking forward to having many of you in Poland next year!
We can’t run programs in Poland this year. What are we doing? Well, for the most part, a lot of the same behind-the-scenes work as always. This is the time when those of us not in Krakow should be doing all the planning and preparations for the next year. We’re hoping that this quiet time will give us the opportunity to spring forward for the future. We have a few little surprises this year as well, but you’ll have to stay tuned to hear about them. 🙂
Please continue to support this mission during this time. If we are going to continue with these transformative programs after the pandemic settles, we need your support now! We cannot stop building the civilization of love and truth, in a culture plagued with isolation, despair, vice, darkness, confusion on the dignity of the human person, and rejecting God who brings freedom and life!
This comes with prayers for you, our JP2 Project family!
God bless you,
Co-Founder and Executive Director