Youth Speak News

{mosimage}TORONTO - The Catholic Children’s Aid Society awarded its latest 84 scholarships totalling more than $180,000 to students who were enrolled in a postsecondary program Aug. 27.

Over the past four years, the society has more than doubled the number of scholarships that it has given out to students formerly in its care.

But for many students, like Allison Kretschmer, 24, the opportunity to merely attend school, let alone receive a scholarship for it, once seemed like an unattainable dream.

Music does help the soul

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A few weeks ago, I hopped on a Greyhound bus, heading to a friend’s wedding, and as luck had it, landed a seat beside a Jamaican reggae and gospel artist.

As he learned that my knowledge of both his music and culture were limited, but that we shared a common Christian faith, he excitedly began to sing excerpts from songs on his latest CD, snapping his fingers and even clapping to keep the beat — I’m sure to the discomfort of some passengers, to the amusement of others.

The evolution of NET in Canada

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{mosimage}OTTAWA - Fourteen years have passed since James Mikulasik took his training with NET Ministries in the United States and founded NET Canada.

Since then, NET (National Evangelization Team) Ministries of Canada has grown into several full-time travelling teams — of which one is now bilingual — several parish teams, an offshoot ministry in Ireland and a music and youth ministry training program.

Let's talk about love

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{mosimage}The University of Guelph was alive with talk on love during the 10th annual CFC Singles for Christ (SFC) and Youth for Christ (YFC) combined national conference Aug. 15-17.

Pros and cons of life in youth ministry

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{mosimage}CALGARY - The position of youth minister, often vital to parish life, can be overlooked or undervalued. It requires long hours, evening and weekend work, dedication, patience and a love for children and adolescents alike.

Daunting as it sounds, many youth ministry co-ordinators in the Calgary diocese allow the pros to outweigh the cons.

The dangers of cohabitation

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I have friends who often tell me I’m silly for believing that you can love someone and have a successful life-long relationship without first having lived together.

Students dig deep for Wells of Hope

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{mosimage}Ted van der Zalm of Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont., is someone who knows very well the definition of giving. In 2004, he started Wells of Hope, a not-for-profit charity dedicated to helping people in Guatemala by drilling wells for fresh water and providing the necessities of survival.

“God doesn’t look at how much we’ve given, but how much we have left back,” van der Zalm said. “It’s a call not to give until it’s convenient, but until it hurts.”

Understanding Confirmation

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Cheers erupted from the Sydney, Australia field as each name was read. Twenty-four Catholics from across Australia and the world were announced one by one as they approached the stage to be Confirmed. Giant screens and loudspeakers broadcasted the venue to the crowd of 400,000 pilgrims at Randwick Racecourse.

Conducting the Masses for God

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{mosimage}TORONTO - With his back to the congregation, waving his arms to keep the choir synchronized, it’s difficult to tell that Matthew Otto is merely 22. More surprising is the fact he is also the director of music, overseeing musicians for all the Masses at the Newman Centre’s St. Thomas Aquinas Church.

Motherhood discrimination

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I was reflecting upon the societal value of motherhood at the United Nations during the Convention for Elimination against Discrimination of Women, held in New York in July.

WYD: a movement for justice and the common good

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SYDNEY, Australia - As I got up this morning, I realized that not only was I leaving tomorrow but I hadn't started packing. Earlier this week, I happened to tear a fairly big hole in my suitcase which had me debating whether or not to buy a new one. I thought I would be in trouble, but with the help of a luggage strap and duct tape, I should be fine for the flight.