Marilena Berardinelli

Holy plans for the holidays

By  Sarah Swist, Youth Speak News
  • June 5, 2014

TORONTO - St. Patrick’s Young Adult Ministry wants young people to turn summer holidays into holy days.

Named “ignite,” the group’s upcoming pub night on June 10 is organized in collaboration with Sin & Redemption Restaurant, Louge and Pub near St. Patrick’s parish in downtown Toronto. The event is titled “Summer Holidays: Beyond Footprints in the Sand” and will focus on exploring how to live the Christian tradition of pilgrimage both at home and abroad.

“We will be going back to the root of the word holiday — holy day — and using it to implement the Holy Spirit into your vacation,” said Marilena Berardinelli, event co-ordinator.

The event will focus mainly on pilgrimages. The speaker, Fr. Eric Rodrigues from the Archdiocese of Toronto, will be concentrat-ing on the historical roots of pil-grimage in the tradition of the Church, and how other Christian churches and religions share in this tradition. He will also address why one should participate in the pilgrimage, its value and how it differs from regular sightseeing of a holy site. Rodrigues will also be covering some ancient pilgrimage sites, in addition to some modern ones and even ones found in Canada such as the Holy Door in Quebec City.

These pub nights are held five to six times a year. Generally 50-60 people show up, mostly young professionals in their 30s, although adults ages 19-39 are welcome. Each pub night consists of its own theme and reflections, such as the last pub night, held on April 29, which focused on the canonizations of Pope John XXII and Pope John Paul II and what it means for Catholics.

“The pub nights were made with the idea that we are trying to create community. The reason that the name tags are prepared are to show the guests that we were waiting specifically for them,” said Berardinelli.

Once the guests have picked up their name tags, they are handed a short quiz with questions on secular and Church trivia related to the event topic.

“The goal is light-hearted conversation and to establish a rapport between new guests. The guests with the most correct answers (we review at the end of the night) win a round of drinks,” said Berardinelli.

The completion of the quiz marks the beginning of the main portion of the night: the guest speaker. For the chosen topic of the night, the speaker will pose three to four prepared questions to the audience to encourage in-teraction on the topic, as well as raise potential questions for the question period. Towards the end of the night, the speaker will take questions on the topic before the evening wraps up.

The young adult pub night runs from 7 to 9 p.m. Sin & Redemp-tion is located at 136 McCaul St. To RSVP for the event, text the word “ignite” to 393939 or e-mail: mberardinelli@stpatrickstoronto. ca.

(Swist, 16, is a student at Loretto Abbey Catholic Secondary School in Toronto.) 

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