(by Elizabeth Wurm)
They say that teenagers are the future of the Church, but I tend to disagree. Teens (and other younger youth) are the Church right here and right now, and this summer we had the opportunity to see the young Church in action!
For the weekend of June 12- 14, 28 youth from around the area as well as five adults attended the Steubenville Youth Conference at Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. Steubenville has been hosting youth conferences for the past forty years, and this year’s theme, “Limitless” was based on the Scripture Passage from John 10: 10 which is: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”
This year the youth were able to from such nationally renowned people as Bob Rice, Cooper Ray, Chris Stefanick, Mary Bielski, Joel Stepanek and Father Dave Pivonka. Throughout the weekend the youth experienced large group sessions with these speakers as well as breakout sessions where they had the option to listen to different topics of their choosing. They also participated in small groups where they were able to discuss what they learned. The youth also had opportunities to attend daily Mass, Adoration and Reconciliation. There is praise and worship music throughout the weekend and about 3,000 youth from around the country attend this conference!
We would like to say thank you to the 28 youth from our parish and neighboring parishes who took the opportunity to delve deeper into their faith at this conference. They were: James Rall, Avery Baith, Riley Ewing, Evan Etzwiler, Drew Smith, Thomas Korte, Gabe Phillips, Bailey Dauterman, Jackie Baith, Abby Zirzow, Casey Goodwin, Ellie Korbas, Victoria Keller, Emmelia Bloomfield, Olivia Deel, Olivia Haller, Makayla Luther, Natasha Mack, Claire Phillips, Alexis Westwood, Alexis Winters, Allison Stump, Caroline Blunk, Reyna Staton, Maya Staton, Alexandra Gies, and Erika Lee. We would also like to take the opportunity to the adults who came with us as chaperones who gave of their time to help the youth see the potential of their faith! Thank you to Kari Krebs, Patrick Rall, Heather Deel and our own Father Jeremy Miller. A special thank you goes out to all those who privately donated to our trip as well as the Knights of Columbus Council #687 for sponsoring a fundraiser for our trip!