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Hearing God’s call in Geelong

Hearing God’s call in Geelong
By Joanne Mascarenhas

 “Those who sow in tears sing as they reap. He went off, went off weeping, carrying the seed. He comes back, comes back singing, bringing in his sheaves.”
~ Psalm 126: 5-6

Moving to Geelong from Dubai was definitely a change in more ways than one. In Dubai we have a Parish bustling and cascading with people from all over the world, of all ages, at all times of the day; Geelong, contrastingly, was serenely Catholic in its simplicity.

I remember coming to Mass and seeing practically no one my age every week and crying out to God to make a change. Right enough, as it says in Jeremiah 29:11-13: “ For I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.  Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me; when you seek me with all your heart.” God took His time, allowed me to cry out wholeheartedly, and then used me as His vehicle and set a path for me to follow, peppered with His grace and overflowing with people who were just as enthusiastic about starting a youth/young adult group the Geelong Deanery. Ange and I met earlier this year, followed by Llewy (AOY), then the NET team, then these wonderful young people from all over the Geelong Deanery, and together, we made this event happen.

We started off the day with 11am Mass by Bishop Mark Edwards, then proceeded to have pizza and begin our meeting. The NET team beautifully led us in games, praise, and a talk about God’s love. We all left the meeting feeling fervent about our faith and certain that we will continue nurturing our young family within the Geelong Deanery.

When planning this event were all hoping for at least three other people but were blessed to end up with around 40 people.  The love and thirst for God is certainly enkindled in the hearts of the youth here and we are extremely passionate carrying this group forward. Our next meeting is Sunday, 28th August, where we hope to form a blueprint for our group.

For all those of you who are in similar situations in your Parish, just remember “ Be strong and of good courage, do not fear or be in dread of [human obstacles]: for it is the LORD your God who goes with you; he will not fail you or forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6).

I want to thank God for guiding us and calling us all by name, without Him none of this would ever have unfolded. This group is not the work of human hands, but of the glory of God!

I also want to thank everyone for their prayers and support in making this happen. Just remember, you always have a home in the Geelong Catholic Deanery! God bless you all!

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Are you a youth minister or involved in youth ministry? If this is the case, we would love to hear from you! Share a reflection, or your experience of your youth group's event? Or perhaps you've attended a talk, or retreat, or similar and would like to share your experience. If you fall under one of these categories, please feel free to get in touch and submit your an by emailing us here: aoy@cam.org.au
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