St. Theresa’s School , Effingham welcomed over 340 young people, youth workers, school chaplains and teachers to this year’s annual youth ministry gathering. The largest attendance for over 10 years.
The day was blessed with good weather which enabled everyone to experience a beautiful 7 mile countryside walk from the school to the National Trust site at Polesden Lacey for lunch and back to St. Theresa’s. Along the route several students from the school recited speeches from well known characters in history such as Ghandi, Martin Luther King, Rosa parks, Nelson Mandela and Mother Theresa. Other entertainment was provided by the Penny Royal Clog Dancers.
These moments along with displays of paralympians perfectly reflected the theme of the day “DARE TO BE DIFFERENT”. In addition workshops were held on topics of Drama & Dance, Fun & Games, Music, Art and a quiz run by CAFOD. Displays on behalf of the charities chosen to receive monies raised attracted much interest throughout the day. Cherry Trees Hospice, Chernobyl’s Children’s Group and the Community of Puentecitos will be the recipients of the funds raised.
The day started with a beautiful celebration of Mass led by Bishop Kieran with music provided by students and staff from Cardinal Newman School, Hove. Students from Cranmore School, West Horsley came to serve at the Mass. Young people from Weybridge Youth Group provided a wonderful surprise Flash Mob song after Mass. Many parishes and schools processed to the altar with their community banners.
The closing liturgy was provided by students from St. George’s, Weybridge, St. Leonard’s Mayfield and St. Peter’s in Merrow.
By their presence at Mass and the various elements of the day all who came to YouthGather 2012 DARED TO BE DIFFERENT!
“Youth gather gave us all a chance to catch up with people we haven’t seen since Lourdes, but also to meet some lovely new people! I didn’t think the walk was going to be much fun, but I loved it, we didn’t get lost luckily and we all stayed together (mostly!) it was really really good and I’m going next year too!” Faye
“Youthgather 2012 was so much fun as it was a great experience to catch up and meet new people my age who I share my faith with. It was a great experience and I really enjoyed getting to know new people on the walk and sharing sweets with them! The atmosphere of the whole day was great as everyone was having a good time, and I will definitely be going again next year!!” Niamh
“I really enjoyed Youthgather 2012, not the least because it was so close to my home but also because it was chance to meet other young people in the diocese who are just as passionate with youth events as the Redshirts and I are. I made some very good friends as well as bonding further with the redshirts who were present.” Andrew
“Youth Gather was fantastic, I was able to meet people of a similar age who shared my belief, as well raising money for a well deserving charity with my friends at my side. I can’t wait for next year.” Anna
“What a Fantastic day! Thank you so much for organising it. So many people turned up! Days like this are so important and give so much back to those involved – Thank You… ”
“Great to see so many “Nice” people” Bass