Chris’s appointment signals a new direction in youth ministry

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Young people at a “six months to go” preliminary event for the Australian Catholic Youth Festival (December 7-9). Group registrations for ACYF end September 22. PHOTO: Supplied

The Hills Shire Citizen of the Year for 2017, Chris Lee, is the new team leader for Sydney Archdiocese’s youth ministry rejuvenation – Catholic Youth Sydney.

Chris, 23, founder of young men’s health organisation Conviction Group, and Credo Youth Ministry (the youth group at St Patrick’s Cathedral Parramatta) is determined to use his skills in youth ministry on a larger scale in the Sydney Region.

Chris remarked that he aims for “Catholic Youth Sydney to be transformational for youth ministry in this country.”

The services of Catholic Youth Sydney will both cater for Sydney Catholics aged 14-30 and organise a structure for youth groups in the Archdiocese.

Chris Lee is the new team leader for Sydney Archdiocese’s Catholic Youth Sydney. PHOTO: Supplied

Chris aims for Catholic Youth Sydney to “lead with the heart and the head in equal parts [with] a balance of social justice, service to the community, and outreach to people in trouble while not undermining the faith.”

According to the 2016 census, the Sydney region has approximately 1,010,550 residents who fall within the ages of 14-30.

The burgeoning demography of youth has prompted the Archdiocese to transform the Catholic Youth Services into Catholic Youth Sydney. (The Catholic Church is the largest Christian denomination, both nationwide and in Sydney.)

Chris, calm and jovial, will be undertaking a mammoth task as equally rewarding as it will be challenging.

But Chris is determined to undertake the challenge with faith and diligence: “I felt the Lord was calling me to this. My loyalty is to wherever God calls.” Chris intends to devote all of his energies towards the Catholic youth of Sydney: “The youth are not the future – they are what we need today.”

Ian Smith, Director of the Evangelisation Project, remarked, “We are entering the most exciting time in youth ministry since World Youth Day 08.”

Indeed, Sydney Archdiocese will be hosting the upcoming Australian Catholic Youth Festival (ACYF) with an expected 12,000 young Australians from across the country descending on Sydney Olympic Stadium.

Group Registrations for ACYF close on September 22. To register, visit acyf.org.au