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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
May 8, 1998     The Message
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May 8, 1998

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The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 11 se arch of liste ne rs ...... ................. ............... ...... iM&Pd( PACIONE ews Service ; i are successful in wel' people have an ample are trained and with clearly defined OUtreach to youth. are catechists, service to people of needs, some are music program, roles in the are adults who are to hear people talk- our parishes more agree this is impor- having trouble get- to go in this regard, imagine that any want to drive away. Such places are ever existed at all. is in having enough young peo- heard and having a effort. staff of three really 1,000 families? It (s expecting them to It is the same for can a parish coot- ministry serve 300 adolescents? (That young peoplein through 12th.) Youth can that one coor- t that youth minister of crisis? people can that as they assess their t or their visit Y degree, a dis- "The parish that is success- ful in welcoming young people has adults who can navigate a 45-second con- versation with an adoles- cent in a way that lets the young personknow that he or she is recognized and cared about," says Mark Pacione, director of youth and young adult ministry for the Archdiocese of Bal- timore, Maryland. -- CNS photo of pastor showing oils to confirmation candidates by Bill Wittman to, young people have a chance to see past the "I have something to teach you agenda" that, for them, sometimes obscures the genuine appre- ciation we who are adults have for them. And the listening happens not only during scheduled youth-ministry events. The listening happens at a chance encounter at the mall, at the Saturday morning soccer game, at the town Fourth of July parade and most especially at parish Eucharistic celebrations. The parish that is successful in wel- coming young people has adults who can navigate a 45-second conversation with an adolescent in a way that lets the young person know that he or she is rec- ognized and cared about. But such skills require training, prac- tice, encouragement and modeling. In short, they require a coordinator who can Marketplace point: both youths and adults in your parish worked especially from readers: work side by side in a shelter for the homeless in down- -- Sister Mary Francine Horns, CSSF, Coraopolis, Pa. living Stations of the Cross. We have (the) traditional ver- rsion for children .... For example, in the social mother holding her son dying of AIDS. Over 300 students Parents are involved with transportation and costuming." -- Carol Troy, Utica, N.Y. )rogram where the youth and adults visit the nursing py Day is a big hit where the kids take their pets to the get to share them with the residents. We also have a Young at luncheon and Mass for the elderly, where the eighth- md put on skits and plays. Both the youth and the elder- -- Father Mark Lamprich, MIC, Greensboro, N.C. Tell why i t is important for people now to learn from publication, plea., write: Faith Alive! 3211 Fourth 20017-1100. ! teach these skills as well as model them. The opportunities to listen to youth are They require a coordinator of parish virtually unlimited, after all. See if you youth ministry who can think about cre- can get a parish council member or ative ways to place listening adults ira the adults in other parish committees to path of the young people they, are anx- serve asmtor:to:.e ious to serve, come' in eohtact with in ]tir'pSh:)'! :+i!v+  Of course, as you build a youth-friend- ly parish, you need not limit yourself to recruiting adults for parish youth-min- istry programs as such. Invest time also in developing mentors for young people in other parish programs -- the parish council, for example. work. Give all parish youth mentors the same kind of skills training you ask other youth-ministry volunteers to have. Pacione is the director of the Division of Youth and Young Adult Ministry, Arclutio- cese of Baltimore, Maryland. Continued from page 10 allow" youth to discover their faith in their own way. If a parish is to be youth-friendly, it needs to admit that youth is a time for new ideas and new views that must be respected. In accepting young people, they have to be valued as the treasures they are. Father Weber is pastor of St. Peter's Parish in Mansfield, Ohio, and a free-lance writer. Food fnr__ th .aht__o_z,_ , ...... ................ ....... ,.., ................. The term "youth-friendly communities" appeared in "Renewing the V'on," a framework for Catholic youth ministry issued last summer by the U.S. bish- ops. "If parishes are to be worthy of the loyalty and active participation of youth, they will need to become "youth-friendly" communities," the bishops said. In a youth-friendly parish, the young people's presence is "conspicuous," the bishops explained. These communities "value young people -- welcoming them into their midst; listening to them; responding to their needs; support- ing them with prayer, time, facilities and money." Young people are viewed as "resources" in a youth-friendly parish, the bish- ops added. Here the young people's gifts and talents are recognized and empowered, and young people are given "meaningful roles in leadership and ministry"; young people's contributions are encouraged. "Opportunities for intergenerational relationships" also are provided in youth-friendly parishes. These are relationships with adults "who serve as role models and mentors." The bishops commented that "ministry with adolescents cognizes the importance of the intergenerational fai,th community in sharing !aJth and pro- moting healthy growth in adolescents.' They said: "Ministry with adts can.., identify and develop leadership ties in the parish hr  people, and create intergenerational s networks and met,'rela - tionships," David Gibson Editor, Faith Alivel , ,i, II, L I, 't ' , ' ........