Friday 23 February 2018

A space with a difference for young visitors

Hundreds of young people from across Ireland are preparing to 'Go! Be Church' with an ambitious programme of events at the 50th International Eucharistic Congress (IEC2012) Chiara Luce Youth Space, running at the RDS, Dublin, from June 11-16.

During Congress week, the youth space will feature a rich mix of interactive catechesis, workshops, drama, dance and music, and is open to adults between 17 and 25 years old.

The programme gets into full swing on Monday, June 11, with a daily prayer session known as 'Get Set Go!', which involves the National Evangelisation Team (NET) ministries, an ecumenical theme with 3Rock Church of Ireland Youth Initiative and Elation Ministries who will perform as the resident band throughout the various events each day.

I think the youth space is a chance to get to know other young pilgrims from around the world, especially during the evening programme from 6.30pm to 11pm. We'll have daily interactive catechesis (teaching) led by a number of international bishops working in youth ministry. This is a chance to deepen our understanding -- and answer any questions we may have -- about our faith.

There will be an ecumenical theme throughout Monday with up to 1,000 young people expected to gather in the youth space for an evening of prayer and song with the Brothers from Taize.

A testimony on 'Recovering from Addiction in Community: A Journey from Death to Life' will be delivered on Tuesday morning and followed by a variety of workshops with everything from 'Write your Song' delivered by Sean Feeney (Elation), to 'Vocation and the Holy Spirit' with Fr Paul Farren, of the Derry diocese. Later pilgrims can praise, dance and sing the night away with the Gardiner Street Gospel Choir and Saggra Brazilian Gospel.

On Wednesday, our Magis programme gets under way, giving young people an opportunity to perform an act of service in Dublin city, with visits during the week to members of the Travelling community and refugees. Meanwhile, a talk show will run in the RDS with lay and religious youth, 'Young and On the Mission . . .in Your Daily Life!'.

Aday of reconciliation will take place on Thursday with members of Youth 2000 leading a service in the evening. On Friday, we will run a variety of workshops. One is of particular interest: 'True Beauty or Superficial Cutie: A look at Authentic Femininity', by Brigid DeMoor. On Friday evening, Sr Bernadette Purcell will lead a workshop of liturgical dance: 'Sacred Dance: Using the Body to Pray', and the Focolare Movement will deliver a presentation about the patron saint of the Congress Youth Space: 'Chiara Luce, the Hurricane of Light'.

On the final day, Bishop Frank Caggiano will speak on 'Exploring and Celebrating the Word of God'.

Mission becomes the running theme on Saturday when young people will be asked the question, 'What Next?' Young people will hear stories about how you can get involved in your local parish and diocese. The Congress journey does not end, our hope is that young people leave inspired and filled with the spirit to take action in their Church.

Irish Independent Supplement

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