Canberra parish launches live-in WYD community

Canberra Archbishop Mark Coleridge has commissioned a team of six young people from Corpus Christi parish in South Tuggeranong who will live in community with the parish's priests to prepare for next year's World Youth Day in Sydney.

The six team members from the youth parish team are Grace Morris, Anne-Marie Priestly, Amy Rose, Gerard Boniwell, Daniel Clementine and Caleb Garvie, Catholic Voice reports.

The young women will live in a rented house while the young men will live in the presbytery with parish priest, Fr John Armstrong, and assistant priest, Fr Emil Milat, at the presbytery in Calwell.

Team managers are Fr Milat and youth co-ordinator for the Tuggeranong parishes Ms Kathleen O'Keefe.

The team members will each spend 10 hours a week this year working in the parish on activities including music, school retreats, sacramental programs, a youth enhanced Mass program and various parish activities.

The team will also take joint responsibility with the parish for evangelising and putting in place programs to ensure the parish reaps the benefits of World Youth Day.

Fr Milat told Catholic Voice he had "never felt more energised and excited, or more challenged. This is a real grassroots work of God and we are all trying to allow God to use us."

He said the new team was part of a broader vision stemming from the 2004 archdiocesan Synod. The first part was appointing a regional youth co-ordinator, and the next phase was to model a youth team.

He said the youth team would also be able to give an example by showing others how young people can live in community ethically.

Fr Milat said Archbishop Coleridge in his homily at his installation Mass last August had called for people to come forward with bold pastoral initiatives. This was one, and he had been very supportive "It is a new form of involvement of laity in ministry," Fr Milat said.

In another Canberra story, the Catholic Voice also reports that a major event is planned for 11 May to launch World Youth Day preparations with Year 10, 11 and 12 students from the diocese.

WYD Cross heading for Guam

Meanwhile, the World Youth Day Cross will arrive on Thursday in the Archdiocese of Agana on the Pacific island of Guam.

Guam priest, Fr Jeff San Nicolas told KUAM News that some of the island's youth have already have plans for the Cross.

"Some of the youth are already (saying) it's going to take a lot of them but they're planning to form a chain but instead of walking with the Cross, they're actually going to pass it from one to another from the Department of Youth Affairs over to Santa Teresita (parish)," he said.

The Cross and icon will travel to several dioceses in each country, allowing people to pray reflect and celebrate in their community.

Parish youth team 'first' (Catholic Voice, March 2007)
Students to rally for WYD launch (Catholic Voice, March 2007)
Island Catholics prepare for World Youth Day (KUAM News, 6/3/07)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
World Youth Day 2008
Archdiocese of Canberra and Goulburn

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6 Mar 2007