Youth Speak News

I first learned about the rosary in my Grade 9 religion class. My religion teacher said the rosary was one of the most important parts of the Catholic faith and was strongly critical of anyone who tried to downplay its importance. He said the rosary was an excellent sign of one’s prayerfulness and devotion to God.

While I agree that it was certainly a sign of devotion, I felt he failed to share with us an important point: the rosary is a tool that Christians can use to live a virtuous life — by meditating on the mysteries of the rosary.

It's no time to lose faith

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{mosimage}October has started out as a difficult month for Catholics in Antigonish and for those of us in New Brunswick too. The news of Bishop Raymond Lahey facing child pornography charges has been hard for all of us to accept. It is devastating to think that somebody in such a position of trust and respect would possess child pornography, especially when he had just been working to help victims of child abuse.

Watching the news and reading people’s comments online, it seems that many people have lost faith not only in Bishop Lahey, but in other priests, bishops and the Catholic Church itself.

Debating God's existence on campus

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{mosimage}OTTAWA - Campus for Christ, a worldwide Christian campus organization that has a group at Ottawa’s Carleton University, organized its second debate in four years to debate the question many have pondered over the years.

The recent debate “Does God Exist?” drew more than 100 students.

Campus for Christ paired up with the secular campus group Free Thought and the Centre of Inquiry in Toronto to bring in two speakers to face off. Representing Campus for Christ was Evangelical Rev. Joe Boot, while atheist professor Ronald De Souza took the Free Thought position.

Toronto student charity helps out '1 Step @ a Time'

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{mosimage}TORONTO - There is one Grade 11 physics class that Natalia Blicharska and Mariya Kolomiyets are certain they will never forget.

It was during this class in December 2008 that they had the brilliant idea to start their own charity. The charity’s name — 1 Step @ a Time — is reflective of their philosophy that they must first serve the needs of Torontonians before helping others globally.

Students honour the late Fr. Zorzi with walk

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{mosimage}TORONTO - Nine-hundred students at St. Michael’s College School walked to conquer cancer at their first event in honour of a beloved past school president.

The students raised $17,000 which they will donate to Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation on behalf of the late Fr. Daniel Zorzi, C.S.B., their school president who died of cancer at the age of 48 in January.

Celebrating God’s blessings on Thanksgiving Day

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Canadians have been celebrating the feast of Thanksgiving in their homes since the time of our forefathers, but so much has changed since then that we are often left wondering what it is we have to be thankful for.

The early Canadians celebrated a safe journey looking for the Northwest Passage, but what about us? There are no long trudging trips for us to make, and most of us don’t cultivate or hunt the food we eat. So what then do we have to be thankful for when everything we have is at our disposal and we live in a society that allows us to make a $40,000 income while sitting at home in our pyjamas?

Schools need to be evangelizers

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Growing up in Ontario, I spent 14 years in Catholic school. I was, and still am, grateful for the religious education I received: mandatory religion classes, school Mass and the freedom to wish people a “Merry Christmas” without reproof.

I was constantly exposed to arguments for publicly funded faith-based schools and agreed with the people around me who felt that exposure to these schools allowed for stronger faith among younger generations.

Kids understand message of We Day

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{mosimage}MARKHAM, Ont. - When Louise Kent sang to about 300 St. Monica Catholic Elementary School pupils that “the power of youth is the power of truth,” the kids were paying attention.

“We should help them (the poor),” said Grade 7 student Katherine Paulino at the end of Kent’s two-hour preview of We Day. “They say it all the time, but we should really help them.”

“You’re helping to start a group in Grade 7, a whole group helping the world. But it could be everyone,” said student Renée Lam.

“When I grow up, I want to help the poor,” said Ivana Anderson.

Altar servers' club marks 20 years at Chinese parish

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{mosimage}TORONTO - Before his teen years, Robert Chan, 25, began attending Mass at Our Lady of Mount Carmel, the Chinese parish of downtown Toronto for the past 40 years, and soon found a social haven with other Chinese youth in the altar servers’ club.

Little did he know that more than a decade later he would join hundreds at the altar servers’ club 20th anniversary Sept. 26 to celebrate a success story.

“I am really thankful for having the opportunity to see how our altar servers’ club developed over the years,” he told The Catholic Register. “It’s been a blessing to see the kids grow and to see them be inspired by actions of the senior members of the club and follow in their footsteps.”

World Youth Day fruits showing in Newfoundland

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Some say young people are not interested in their faith in Newfoundland, but throughout the past several years I’ve seen many signs of hope.

Prior to World Youth Day in Toronto in the summer of 2002, it was rare to see gatherings for young Catholics in Newfoundland. As a teenager I could not find anywhere to share my faith with people my age. Besides church-mandated activities such as sacramental preparation, meetings for Catholics were mostly attended by older people, even if they were designed for youth.

A vessel of love

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I joined my youth group for Street Patrol, feeding the poor on the streets of Toronto, in the hopes of helping someone’s troubled life. I thought if I could affect or enlighten at least one life, I would be eternally grateful. But I feel like I got something even better.

At first, I was terrified of being shunned or being emotionally or physically harmed as some homeless people are known to be unpredictable.