Volume 19, Issue 21
After Sydney played host to World Youth Day in July, dioceses around the country have hurried to offer a suitable ‘follow-up’ to that unforgettable event. WYD laid an impressive groundwork — after all, very few events have single-handedly offered young people a ‘cool’ way to explore their faith.
But learning and living the Catholic faith is not something you can limit to a sleeping bag and a racecourse full of pilgrims every two or three years. The Faith is more enduring than that. And the two thousand-strong crowd that filled St Patrick’s Cathedral for the recent WYD Reunion Mass and Festival was a clear indication that further faith development is welcome.
To assist young people in this, the Archdiocesan Office for Youth has developed a website specifically designed to entice them to explore the Catholic Faith and become active in it.
Here are five reasons why the next time you type a web address in your web browser, it should be www.aoy.org.au.
1. YOU CAN DOWNLOAD STUFF – LEGALLY.
Many parishes and communities have expressed an interest in running their own formation training programs in their respective parishes. The website’s Resource Library contains a range of downloadable resources that have been developed for youth leaders to implement in their youth groups. It also contains suggested topics for youth group meetings and prayers for all occasions. 2. LEARN.
There is great solace in the centuries-old Church documents that aim to explain the Catholic Faith, and how best to live it in the modern world. Visit the Learn section to read easy-to-understand explanations on Church documents or find inspiration in the words that Pope Benedict XVI spoke at WYD08. 3. i-WILL VISIT THIS WEBSITE.
“Faith without deeds is dead”. Many men and women over the centuries have become saints after devoting their lives to helping others. Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati (one of the AOY’s chosen patron saints) devoted his life to helping the poor, while Blessed Mary MacKillop (another AOY patron saint) spent her lifetime providing care and education for the poor and sickly. There’s great reward in helping others, and in the i-Will section of the site, you’ll find a list of agencies within the Catholic Archdiocese and local organisations that are always in need of volunteer support from young people. 4. NEVER MISS A DATE.
Visit the Calendar, where you will find a list of events happening around the Archdiocese – Holy Hour at St Patrick’s, events organised at a regional level including AOY training days, deanery retreats, catechesis sessions and more. 5. SEE WHO’S IN THE SPOTLIGHT.
The site offers more than just a library of information. Check out CulturED, where you can view the AOY blog and read regular reviews on the latest movies, music and books that are influencing popular culture – all written from a young Catholic’s perspective.
Youth and youth leaders alike can now look forward to a newly revitalised and exciting youth ministry in Melbourne – one that doesn’t require a sleeping bag, just a good connection to the internet.