COVID-19 has not stopped our amazing teens and volunteers from staying connected and journeying together in faith!
I am so happy to report that an incredible ministry is taking place in our Confirmation program. In January, we held two special Masses (called Spiritus Masses) for our second-year candidates. Because we could not have a retreat offsite, the Spiritus Mass served as the opportunity for candidates approaching Confirmation to take a step away from their normal routines and find peace in the liturgy. This was the first Mass geared toward the youth that teens could attend in person during the pandemic. The Spiritus Mass included witness talks from teen Kairos leaders as well as a homily from Fr. Rodolfo Ramirez. Thanks to the work of Mark Karney, these Masses were live streamed for those who were not comfortable attending in person. Thank you to all who made this possible!
Catechists Doreen Colletti-Muhs and Rita Faycurry have been very creative throughout this entire year, tirelessly finding ways to give our teens a sense of belonging and purpose. One of many examples is their Valentine’s card project. Their small group made Valentines cards for the Barrington Council on the Aging and Meals on Wheels. See the photo below of the bright and cheerful messages from our teens. What a blessing to have our teens spread some good news!
1/31 Scripture Reflection at Mass Geared Towards Teens
On January 31, 2021, I had the wonderful opportunity to speak directly to the teens of the parish during the 10:30 a.m. Mass. I was able to speak to the many challenge’s teens face today, from depression and anxiety, to pressures and the pandemic. Ultimately, my message is simple: our teens are loved for exactly who they are. God rejoices beyond measure at simply being with them in prayer, and prayer takes many forms. If you missed it and would like to check it out, please see the link: https://vimeo.com/506612836
I cannot say enough about our incredible leadership team. If anyone wonders how powerful this retreat is, they only need to look at the determination of our leadership team. Many of them are now over a year past their own experience of the retreat and are determined as ever to continue their formation as leaders and find a way to bring this experience to their peers in challenging times. I have been working hard with this group, adult leaders, and other youth ministers to plan a Kairos Retreat in this difficult period. Stay tuned for our plan!
Our first-year small groups have received a treat to make their Lent special this year. Our department shared a video recording of former Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry Michael Hugo’s dramatic presentation of the life of Jesus. In this video, Michael Hugo presents the humanity of Jesus and what he felt and experienced in his life. He also brings to life the period in history in which Jesus lived, and gives all who view it an opportunity to walk with Jesus emotionally through his life and ultimately to his death and resurrection.
Finally, Youth and Young Adult Ministry is here for your teen! Feel free to reach out any time if we can be of support, or if you want your teen to connect to one of our ministries. Also feel free to reach out if you are feeling called to support Youth and Young Adult Ministry as a volunteer in the future!
Your Companion in Christ, Joe Tomaso
Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministry | (847) 620-3073 |firstname.lastname@example.org