festivals IVE Youth Festival Soulful Sundays St George Catholic Church volunteering youth

What feeds your soul?

IVE Youth Festival 2012

The last couple of months have been a little hectic.  I’ve had the honor of chaperoning a few of the youth retreats at my church.  I find it to be a blessing in disguise.  In my youth, I never participated in such events.  So it was almost like getting a second chance for having missed it the first time around.  It’s a wonderful thing to see so many young people, from all different walks of life, come together and have such strong faith.

My niece and I, IYE Youth Festival 2012

Each morning started off in prayer and every day ended the same.  Those days were the most tranquil!  To start off the day with God and listen to the word.  The mass flowed as if it were rehearsed for months.  Each voice harmonized to sound as one.  Of all the masses I have been to in my life, it had never sounded more lovely. 

I got to know the group at a more personal level.  I listened to their opinions, watched them take in the days, saw them bond with each other and get to know new people.  With all that goes on in the world, its comforting to know that we can come together in Christ.

Girls Summer Camp 2012

The girls at the Summer Camp taught me that I can rise to a challenge of being an adult, commanding respect and earning trust.  I hope my fear never showed.  Teenage girls can be scary.  This experience reminded me how impressionable our young girls really are.  Saying the right thing can carry them on a natural high towards victory against an opposing team and saying the wrong thing can crush them in an instant.  Our youth needs role models, to push them to reach their potential, to tap into their creativity, to stand up for their individuality, and to encourage them to travel the road less traveled.  We must feed them hope.  We must plant seeds of success.  We need them to understand that they can do anything they set their minds to do. 

Pit Stop driving back from Girls Summer Camp 2012

I was fortunate growing up to have teachers and role models that did just that for me.  I hated it at the time, because I was young and that’s what you’re supposed to do at that age.  However its the one thing that has always stuck with me, NEVER LET ANYONE TELL YOU THAT YOU CANT DO SOMETHING.  I hope that I am able to send that message out to the youth I work with.  Anything is possible if you set your mind to it.  Anything is possible with Christ.

They all started the weekend reluctant and by the retreat’s end no one wanted to leave.  It touched my heart and blessed my soul to see such a sight.  Its amazing what opportunities arise when you open your heart and mind and allow yourself to take it all in.

Today’s mass centered around one basic idea, “Whoever had much did not have more, and whoever had little did not have less.”  It’s in reference to riches.  “…For you know the gracious act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, for your sake he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich.  Not that others should have relief while you are burdened, but that as a matter of equality your abundance at the present time should supply their needs so that their abundance may also supply your needs, that there may be equality…. (2 Cor 8:7, 9, 13-15)

While I do not currently posses the riches that would allow me to give to others as I would like to, I have been blessed at the moment with free time.  That for me is currently in abundance, so it only makes sense that I might give that free time towards volunteering to persuade young minds into doing grand things with their lives.   Whatever you have an abundance of, please share it.  I have discovered this past year that volunteering feeds my soul and that to me is priceless.

So tonight I leave you with this, What feeds your soul?

Until then