SINGAPORE – “HOPE in the Living God” – that was the theme for this year’s inaugural North District Youth Day (NDYD) Rally.
Six parishes – Christ the King, Holy Spirit, Our Lady Star of the Sea, Risen Christ, St. Anthony, and St. Joseph (Bukit Timah) – participated in the event held on Sep 5 where more than 500 youth convened at Hersing Hub (photo above) in Toa Payoh for an evening of spirited praise and worship, adoration and edification.
The teens kicked off the day with the Parish Catechesis Segment that commenced in the afternoon at their respective parishes. These were specially planned by the NDYD organising committee to streamline the delivery of the individual parish sessions for the teens, and were designed to lead into the evening rally.
Through the parish segment, youth were compelled to ask and define for themselves exactly what the concept of Christian hope is to them, and to convince others of the benefits of having hope in the Living God.
Presenters shared their life and faith experiences.
The subsequent NDYD night rally was themed “Being Hope” – stepping out as beacons of Christ’s love and truth. An electrifying praise and worship session led by the combined parish music team, brought the teens to their feet, jumping up and down and pouring their hearts out in worship.
A three-act sketch performed by Walk on Water Productions led the participants into an invigorating and deeply thought-provoking session conducted by Father Terence Pereira. This was followed by the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, to let the teens refocus and reconnect more deeply with God.
In his engaging talk with the youth, Father Terence revealed the meaning behind a personally-coined acronym “LLG”, which stood for “Living for the Living God”. He further challenged the teens to live out their mission and life purpose of realising their faith; to balance the exuberance of their youth with the holiness of the Christian Word in their lives.
Confirmation-level participant Jerome Lim, 15, was inspired by Father Terence’s message.
He remarked, “(Father Terence’s talk) was better than normal Mass sermons... it was engaging and more on our level.”
The Adoration was focused on “The Jesus Call” – one that called on youths to consider and recognise the ways in which God reaches out to them wherever they are in their lives, with their needs, joys and pains.
It was an invitation to encounter Christ, and to respond to His call for Christian discipleship. In expressing their commitment as followers of Christ, the participants serve as hope-givers to the people around them.
This year’s NDYD not only provided an opportunity for youth and catechetical leaders from the various parishes to collaborate on a larger scale (beyond the confines of an individual parish), but also served to empower the participant teens, many of whom were preparing for the sacrament of confirmation.
“Having both praise and worship as well as Adoration during the rally gave the confirmands the exposure of both the more ‘enthusiastic’ and ‘serious’ sides of worshipping Christ,” said Geraldine Seah, 17, one of the facilitators from Church of the Holy Spirit.
She added: “It affirms their faith in the journey towards confirmation.”
By Jeanette Tan