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Inner west teens talk trust in God

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Sydney Catholic Youth, above, led discussions about trust in God in inner west Catholic schools. Photo: SCE
Sydney Catholic Youth, above, led discussions about trust in God in inner west Catholic schools. Photo: SCE

Off the back of the inaugural Purpose Conference, the youth conference of the Archdiocese of Sydney, the Sydney Catholic Youth team has been responding to demand for youth ministry and formation in schools.

Last Friday, 22 March, students chose to come and talk all things God’s will, instead of getting a head start on the weekend.

A youth ministry afternoon hosted by Domremy College and facilitated by Sydney Catholic Youth, welcomed students from Holy Cross College and Marist Sisters Woolwich, Marist College Eastwood and Domremy College Five Dock.

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The event featured Krispy Kreme doughnuts followed by a raw and open discussion on how to stay close to God, despite the world drifting away.

The session titled “Trust in the Process” broke open the need for young people to trust in God and discern his will for their lives, as they get to the end of high school and choose what kind of people they will become.

Sydney Catholic Youth shared personal stories and broke open the need for discernment, getting to know God’s voice, the difference between God’s active and permissive will, how to navigate suffering, and the fulfillment of God’s will versus the emptiness of simply following our own plans.

The sharings were followed by Q&A, where students sought advice on how to stay close to God, or return back to their faith if they may have strayed away.

The students had the chance to share openly on why they believe peers are turning away from the church, and how they can keep close to God despite such challenges.

Many students shared how a lack of understanding of what the church teaches, along with feeling isolated, or a lack of faith support at home, were among the reasons for such drifting.

Students openly discussed how establishing a relationship with God and recognising faith as all-encompassing for one’s life, and not just an hour on a Sunday, is crucial for journeying the long road.

Building a faith community of like-minded peers and establishing choices for your faith now, were other suggestions for staying close to God and learning to hear his voice.

The session closed with a communal prayer and a call out for students to attend the upcoming Purpose Camp.

Despite the event having come to a formal close, many young people stayed and kept the conversations alive, as they were deeply engaged by the raw and real discussion on trusting God and seeking his will.

“I am always in awe of the openness and insights of the youth at gatherings like this,” said

Milad Khalil, who leads the Sydney Catholic Youth team.

“I am totally convinced that they are craving real intellectual and human formation. Based on the comments shared by the group and the observations of my team and I, it is becoming more evident that high schoolers are seeking good mentorship and examples of what they can aspire to.

“They are picking up on the emptiness that social media presents and are asking for more.”

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