Catholic Youth & Family Day at Six Flags New England – Mark your calendars for Tuesday, August 8, 2017. The day will begin with a mass in the picnic grove celebrated by the Most Rev. Mitchell T. Rozanski. Special discounted tickets will be available for this event. More information is forthcoming. The flyer is available here.
Diocesan Celebration of the 32nd World Youth Day – Join high school and college-age young adults from across the diocese in celebrating the joys, sights and sounds of World Youth Day in our own diocese as we pilgrimage to Our Lady of Fatima Church in Ludlow on Saturday, July 8, 2017 from noon-5pm. Cost for the World Youth Day Celebration is $10 per person. Also, join us for various youth gatherings across the diocese. These events are free and open to all high school and college-age young adults. Please see the flyer for more information.
Encuentro Juvenil – Encuentro Juvenil will be held the weekend of May 26-28, 2017 at Camp Holy Cross in Goshen. It is a bilingual weekend for Latino youth (but open to all youth) in 9-12th. The weekend includes music, prayers, games, reflections, and much more. Encuentro Juvenil Application is available here.
“Mercy in Action” Diocesan Youth Rallies – “Mercy in Action” Diocesan Youth Rallies – The Office of Youth Ministry is holding two rallies for middle school and high school youth on April 1 & 2, 2017 from 11:30am-5pm. April 1st will be at St. Mary’s High School in Westfield and April 2nd will be at St. Joseph’s High School in Pittsfield. The day will feature a pizza lunch, various activities, breakout sessions for middle school and high school youth, and mass.
The keynote is Oddwalk Ministries (Shannon Cerneka and Orin Johnson). Oddwalk exists to help young and old alike embrace Jesus, Justice, and Joy through fun, upbeat and interactive music and witnessing. Oddwalk shares a message of community, participation, and mission with every group. Visit www.oddwalkministries.com to learn more about their ministry.
The high school breakout session is with Every Step Matters (E.S.M.) Ministry (Jose & Gigi Gonzalez). The E.S.M. team travels to parishes leading retreats and days of reflection for young people. They use hip-hop music, spoken word, skits and witness testimonies to bring the love of God to teens throughout western Massachusetts and beyond. The session theme is “Breaking Free” – The time is now to break free from the world’s negative grip, and walk with great confidence with Jesus. Become unashamed, fearless, courageous and compassionate as you follow!
The middle school breakout session is with Just Life® Ministry of the Diocese of Springfield Catholic Charities Agency’s Office of Justice and Peace. Just Life® offers social justice experiential workshops for parish Religious Education programs, youth ministry, and Catholic school programs. The session theme will focus on the Dignity of the Human Person. Session title and description are forthcoming. The Cost is $15 per person.
NET Ministries – NET Ministries challenges young Catholics to love Christ and embrace the life of the Church. Every August, 150 young Catholics aged 18-28 leave behind their jobs, school, family, and friends to devote nine months to serving with NET. NET will offer retreats in the diocese October 3-10, 2017.Learn more about NET ministries here (netusa.org)
Youth Rally and Mass for Life –The Youth Rally and Mass for Life occurs in conjunction with the annual National March for Life held on (or near) the anniversary of the 1973 Roe v. Wade court decision making abortion legal in this country. The Rally strives to encourage the youth participating in the National March for Life in their witness as disciples of Christ and promoters of the Gospel of Life. The next Rally will be held on Friday, January 19, 2018. A limited number of free tickets are available by calling 413-452-0677. http://youthrallyandmassforlife.org/
Souper Bowl of Caring – A creative way to engage youth in service takes place every year on the weekend of the Super Bowl. Register your parish and enlist your youth to collect money after the weekend masses on or before February 3-4, 2018 for a local soup kitchen, food pantry or social service agency of your choice. All proceeds go directly to that charity. souperbowl.org.
XLT Westfield – XLT is a form of Eucharistic Adoration that involves a time of Praise and Worship Music, followed by a speaker who will share their faith, and then ending with a time of adoration in the presence of the Eucharist. It is held on the last Monday of the month at St. Mary’s, Westfield – click here for St. Mary’s website.
I ACT Retreat: I ACT stands for “I’m A Christian Teen”. It is a retreat group based at Our Lady of the Valley in Easthampton that has been running weekend retreats for 10 years. They invite all youth in grades 8-12 to come experience the “I ACT” retreat on May 12-14, 2017 at Camp Holy Cross in Goshen. The retreat and location allows youth the opportunity to step back from their everyday lives in order to build their relationship with God while having lots of fun. The cost is $45 per person. More information and forms can be found here http://www.olveasthampton.org/.
National Catholic Youth Conference – NCYC is an exciting, biennial three-day experience of prayer, community, and empowerment for over 20,000 Catholic teenagers and their adult chaperones. It consists of engaging keynotes and workshops, music, an interactive exhibit area, and so much more. It will be held on November 16-18, 2017 in Indianapolis, IN. An information meeting for adult leaders will be held at 6:30pm on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at St. Elizabeth, Ludlow. For more information, please call Gina at 413-452-0677.
National Catholic Conference on Youth Ministry – NCCYM is the largest conference in the country for adults who minister to and with Catholic youth. Join thousands of your colleagues—youth and campus ministers, religious education leaders, clergy and religious, young adult ministers, performers, artists and volunteers—for three days of inspiring keynotes, challenging workshops, dynamic prayer and worship, extensive networking, hundreds of resource exhibits, and good-hearted entertainment. The next conference will be held on December 6-8, 2018in Tampa, FL.
National March for Life – Please note: Due to the Presidential Inauguration next January, the National March for Life in Washington, D.C. will take place on Friday, January 19, 2018.
World Youth DayPanama 2019 – An international gathering begun by Saint Pope John Paul II held every 2-3 years to bring all the youth and young adults together in one place with the Holy Father. The next international World Youth Day celebration will take place in Panama on January 22-27, 2019. Details regarding the celebration and the diocesan pilgrimage to Panama are forthcoming. Watch this promotional video to learn more about this amazing experience.