How’s your week going? If you are sending a young person or two off to a new school year this week, I hope things are going smoothly! I’ve been praying for all of our students, teachers, and parents this week.
Let’s get right to the notes!
- “Meet and Greets” With Vicky, August 20 (Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Hammond), 21 (St. Matthias, Crown Point), 27 (St. Paul, Valparaiso), 29 (Sacred Heart, LaPorte), 6:30 PM. Just one more reminder about the upcoming meet and greets! I am really looking forward to seeing everyone at these gatherings. I can’t wait to hear from you, answer your questions, and discuss the future of youth and young adult ministry here in the Diocese of Gary. RSVP’s are not required, but are helpful to let me know how much snacks I should bring. You can do so here.
- At that same link, you can sign up to participate in a Grásta Dé! focus group.I would like to hear from people who typically send middle school students to Grásta Dé! and those who don’t, what kind of event would benefit the faith lives of their young students.
- Diocesan Youth Council. DYC will be starting up in September. Parish leaders, please confirm with your current reps if they are still able to serve this year and let me know. Also, let me know if you will be sending new reps. I’m in the process of sending out a mailing to reps to invite them to the first meeting on Sept. 22. The DYC website has been updated, including all of the dates for DYC meetings for the 2019-2020 school year and permission forms for the meetings. I am still looking for one parish to host our December gathering. If you know your parish could host, please let me know. Check out https://www.garyoyya.org/dyc/ for more infomation.
- Igniting the Fire, September 14-15, St. Matthias Catholic Church, Crown Point. All 6th-12th grade youth are invited to Igniting the Fire, September 14-15, at St. Matthias Catholic Church in Crown Point. ITF has a prayerful, retreat-style feel with elements of lock-in-style fun! For more information or to register, go to http://ignitingthefire.org/ If you have any questions, feel free to visit the Directions/Contact page and reach out to the ITF team. You can also print out and share this nifty flyer.
- Youth Ministers’ Retreat, January 24-25, 2020, Lindenwood Retreat Center. Save the Date! Youth Ministers are invited to the third annual Youth Minsters’ Retreat, hosted once again at Lindenwood. More info will come out in a few months. If you are interested in attending, please click this link to fill out an interest form. Please note: that link will not register you for the retreat. The information collected will be used to help plan the retreat.
- NWI Awakening 2, October 4-6, Holy Name Catholic Church, Cedar Lake. After a successful first retreat back in April, we are happy to announce NWI Awakening 2 will be happening October 4-6th at Holy Name Catholic Church in Cedar Lake. Young adults 18-25 are invited to a weekend of fun, faith, and and getting to know the Awakening community. Come encounter Christ with follow young adults on what will be an amazing weekend. $30 covers everything and scholarships are available to help with the cost. For more info, check out https://www.garyoyya.org/awakening-retreat/
- Young Adult Ministry Help Wanted: I’m in the process of updating the youth and young adult ministry website. One of the things I wanted to do is to update the list list of parish young adult ministry programs throughout the diocese. If your parish has a young adult ministry at your parish (ministry for people in their 20’s and 30’s), please let me know! You can email me at email@example.com.
Just a Thought:
If you come and visit me at my office (and please do! I love visitors), you will notice that on my desk I am keeping a copy of Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation, Christus Vivit, which means, Christ is Alive
. It is the pope’s response to the recent Vatican Synod on Young People, Faith and Vocational Discernment. In it, Pope Francis shares his insights on the faith of young people and his own experiences from the Synod. He offers advice of how to live a life for Christ to young people. But he also calls out those who minister to teens and young adults. Pope Francis recognized that you, parents, youth ministers, campus ministers, priests, parish members, have a special role in building and supporting the faith journey of our young friends.
One of my favorite passages from Christus Vivit, is: “Anyone called to be a parent, pastor or guide to young people must have the farsightedness to appreciate the little flame that continues to burn, the fragile reed that is shaken but not broken (cf. Is 42:3). The ability to discern pathways where others only see walls, to recognize potential where others see only peril. That is how God the Father see things; he knows how to cherish and nurture the seeds of goodness sown in the hearts of the young. Each young person’s heart should thus be considered “holy ground”, a bearer of seeds of divine life, before which we must “take off our shoes” in order to draw near and enter more deeply into the Mystery.” (Christus Vivit, paragraph 67).
Peace and all goodness,
Ministry Consultant for Youth and Young Adult Ministry