• Wartakanlah Injil kepada segala makhluk.
    Mrk 16:15

  • 你们往普天下去, 向一切受造物宣传福音
    谷 16:15

  • Everything is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit’s Grace.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • Segala sesuatu menjadi mungkin dalam kekuatan karunia Roh Kudus.
    St. Arnold Janssen

  • 我当传教士不是为主牺牲,而是上主给我的最大恩赐
    圣福若瑟神父

  • Với sức mạnh Ân Huệ của Chúa Thánh Thần, Mọi việc đều có thể được.
    St Arnoldus Janssen

  • Preach the Gospel to the whole creation./Anh em hãy đi khắp tứ phương thiên hạ, loan báo Tin Mừng cho mọi loài thọ tạo
    Mk 16:15

  • There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit.
    1 Cor 12:4

  • And the Word became flesh and lived among us.
    Jn 1:14

  • Let the word of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you.
    Col 3:16

  • To proclaim the Good News is the first and greatest act of love of neighbour.
    St Arnold Janssen

  • 传扬天国福音是第一且最大的爱近人行动
    圣杨生•爱诺德神父

  • Có nhiều đặc sủng khác nhau, nhưng chỉ có một Thần Khí/
    1 Cor. 14:4

  • 圣言成了血肉,寄居在我们中间
    若 1:14

  • Ada rupa-rupa karunia, tetapi Roh satu
    1 Kor 12:4

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Thursday, 21 December 2017 11:56

SVD groups have a blast at Australian Catholic Youth Festival

 

ACYF youth vigil music group 450About 80 young people from SVD parishes and chaplaincies in Alice Springs, Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney made the pilgrimage to the Australian Catholic Youth Festival in Sydney early this month, an event they say “changed hearts” and “opened minds”.

 

The youth kicked off their ACYF experience with a vigil gathering at the St Arnold Janssen Chapel in Marsfield, which was broadcast on Facebook Live, before heading to Homebush for the Festival.

At the SVD youth gathering, some of the young people shared music and drama and they heard from some of the young missionaries who told them how they can share in the SVD community through their parish, as well as communications channels like social media and the SVD App.

Provincial, Fr Henry Adler SVD told the young people he hoped the Festival would help deepen their relationship with Jesus Christ and that they would then become missionaries, sharing the joy of the Gospel in the parishes and communities in which they live.

“We are missionaries, but you are also missionaries,” he told them.

“I pray that this experience of the Australian Catholic Youth Festival may help you to open your hearts to Christ, that will open for you new horizons for mission, for spreading joy to the whole world.”

ACYF youth vigil handwaving 450Meanwhile, at the Festival itself, the SVD groups joined almost 20,000 young people who were urged to set the world on fire with their faith.

The three-day event consisted of plenary sessions in QUDOS Arena, praise and worship, workshops, Mass, Adoration, testimonies and more.

The Festival kicked off with a Welcome to Country, followed by Canadian Catholic music star Matt Maher blasting the stage in praise of Jesus, and Archbishop Anthony Fisher’s opening address.

Archbishop Fisher, the Archbishop of Sydney and Bishops’ Delegate for Youth, challenged the young people present to follow the example of Mary and “Say Yes” to the plans God has for their lives and he reminded them of Pope Francis’ call for young people not to live as couch potatoes.

“Get up off the couch and you’ll be able to see further as well as do more,” he said. “And that new horizon that is opened up will be a source of joy for you and for others. Say a Marian YES, an in-God-I-trust YES, a with-all-my-heart YES, a for-today-and-always YES to God and see what He can do with you.

ACYF group 450Natasha Kolio, one of the young people from St Mark’s Parish in Inala, Brisbane, described ACYF as “an emotional, spiritual healing” and “a blessed weekend”.

“One specific workshop we attended that personally ‘hit home’ for me was by Fr Rob Galea called ‘Figuring Out God’s Call’,” she said.

“During his session he spoke openly about the materialistic and digital world we are living in and encouraged young followers to not be afraid of spreading His message, sharing a quote from St Pope John Paul II, ‘Do not be afraid to be Saints of the New Millennium’. He also spoke about discernment and how we us young people have a greater responsibility more than ever to accept God’s calling and the path he has planned for our lives.

“Overall, the festival was an amazing experience that definitely changed hearts and opened minds of so many young people especially leading into The Year of Youth.”
Eighteen-year-old Neysha Santos, also from St Mark’s, said “each day was a blessing”.

“The Festival gave me, alongside 19,000 other Catholic youth, the opportunity to question, confront and stand firm in their faith,” she said.

“When the Bishop asked us all to hold up our phones (shine their lights into the darkness) and receive a blessing, when we all sang Bless the Lord together, when we knelt in Adoration, when silence settled amongst the crowd – I just knew that God was there, and I’ve never been so certain about anything in my whole life.”

And 22-year-old Naomi Nguyen said that ACYF surrounded her with more than 19,000 other people who were rejoicing and worshipping in faith.

“It was the most fulfilling experience and it strengthened my own faith a lot,” she said.

“The most important thing I learnt was actually something I had heard my whole life but I never understood until I opened my heart and mind to listen and it was the most simple thing; that God is always there for us, and He loves us always.”

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