Participants of the School of Witness pose and Office for Young People staff for a photo with Archbishop William Goh and (front from left), Frs Samuel Lim, Jude David, Brian D’Souza and Terence Kesavan. Photo: ALEXANDRIA NEOH and ANDRE THENGParticipants of the School of Witness pose and Office for Young People staff for a photo with Archbishop William Goh and (front from left), Frs Samuel Lim, Jude David, Brian D’Souza and Terence Kesavan. Photo: ALEXANDRIA NEOH and ANDRE THENG

“Truly a blessing.”

This was what Mr Bryan Ong, 21, a participant at the recent Nox Gaudii (Night of Joy), said of the event organised by the Office for Young People (OYP).

Nox Gaudii is a monthly worship session for young Catholics, aiming to strengthen their faith as they come together to worship God, receive teaching and experience the fellowship of the Church community.

The recent event, held on Feb 27 at OYP’s premises at Lorong Low Koon, was of exceptional significance as it coincided with the commissioning of the graduates of the 2015 School of Witness (SOW).

Mr Ong, from the Church of the Holy Spirit, was one of 32 people from 11 parishes who took part in the seven-week discipleship school that aims to form young Catholics as effective evangelisers and witnesses of Christ.

“Only one reason keeps us alive, and that is love,” Archbishop William Goh told the 700 young people and their family members who attended the Nox Gaudii.

 “Life without love is meaningless,” he said, adding that very Catholic’s fundamental vocation is to love. To live fully is to love, surrendering “totally to the service of the Lord and humanity”, he said at the event, which had the theme, Come Alive.

It is the encounter with the unconditional love of God that fuels the person’s  love for others, he noted.

Archbishop Goh shared that one’s ability to love is strengthened by a constant prayer life; a faith community, since “no one can be alone”; and a confidante, “for when life is tough, we need someone to journey together with, even as Jesus Christ needed Simeon to help carry the cross”.

The culmination of the event was the commissioning of the SOW graduates by the archbishop.

The evening also included Eucharistic adoration, praise and worship and evangelistic performances by SOW participants. The latter comprised a rap, mime, sign language performance and dance.

A total of 181 young people have attended the seven Schools of Witness organised over the years.

The next Nox Gaudii will be held on March 20 at 8 pm at OYP. For more information, visit www.oyp.org.sg or like “Office for Young People” on Facebook.

By Harold Foo

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