Faith Love and Respect

Catherine McAuley Hub Chaplaincy

Week 10 2023/24

Day 1 – Head

We begin our prayer today with the Sign of the Cross. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy spirit, Amen.

Next week marks the beginning of Advent, the time of preparation before Christ is born. This Sunday just gone we celebrated the feast of Christ the King, which is also known as National Youth Sunday. On this day the Church celebrates the contributions that young people make, and the hope and joy that they bring to our worldwide community.

We are going to read a piece of scripture about hope from the first letter of St Peter. This letter focuses on the importance of believers carrying on even when they are being persecuted and targeted for their faith.

Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! Because of his great mercy he gave us new life by raising Jesus Christ from death. This fills us with a living hope, and so we look forward to possessing the rich blessings that God keeps for his people. He keeps them for you in heaven, where they cannot decay or spoil or fade away. They are for you, who through faith are kept safe by God’s power for the salvation which is ready to be revealed at the end of time.

1 Peter 1:3-5

St Peter was an apostle of Jesus Christ. He was first called Simon, but Jesus changed his name to Kephas, which meant rock in Aramaic, and this was later translated into Petros/Peter in Greek. Peter was called to spread the word of God throughout Israel, but this letter is written decades later when he began to share the Good News with the wider world. He greeted the people as the chosen people of God, exiled around the world. He writes the letter to give them hope, and to encourage them to keep going when they are being persecuted.

As young people, sometimes we can be judged and persecuted because of our age. It can sometimes be hard to feel that we are capable of changing things, or that we have any sort of authority or impact on the world. Let us take the message of St Peter, that living hope, with us this week to celebrate our youth.

We join together in prayer as we say:

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end.

We finish our prayer today with the Sign of the Cross. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy spirit, Amen.


Day 2 – Heart

We begin our prayer today with the Sign of the Cross. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy spirit, Amen.

Today is quite a large chunk of writing, but it is an important thing for us to read. It would probably be a good idea to have some time of reflection and quiet to read through the text below individually rather than as a form.

Pope Francis wrote a letter to be shared with young people called ‘Rejoicing in Hope’. Today we are going to read an extract of that letter. Pope Francis is a huge advocate for the power of young people, and he is constantly trying to encourage us to be brave and go out in the world. Take a moment to read the extract below now:

Youth is a time full of hopes and dreams, stirred by the many beautiful things that enrich our lives: the splendour of God’s creation, our relationships with friends and loved ones, our encounter with art and culture, science and technology, our efforts to work for peace, justice and fraternity, and so many other things. We are living at a time, though, when for many people, including the young, hope seems absent. Sadly, many of your contemporaries who experience wars, violent conflict, bullying and other kinds of hardship, are gripped by despair, fear and depression. They feel as if they are in a dark prison, where the light of the sun cannot enter. A dramatic sign of this is the high rate of suicide among young people in different countries. In such situations, how can we experience the joy and hope of which Saint Paul speaks? There is a risk that instead we will fall prey to despair, thinking that it is useless to do good, since it would not be appreciated or acknowledged by anyone. We may say to ourselves, with Job: “Where then is my hope? Who will see my hope?” (Job 17:15).

When we think of human tragedies, especially the suffering of the innocent, we too can echo some of the Psalms and ask the Lord, “Why?” At the same time, however, we can also be part of God’s answer to the problem. Created by him in his image and likeness, we can be signs of his love, which gives rise to joy and hope even in situations that appear hopeless. I think of the film “Life is Beautiful”, where a young father, with great sensitivity and creativity, manages to transform harsh realities into a kind of adventure and game. He enables his young son to see things with “eyes of hope”, protecting him from the horrors of the concentration camp, preserving his innocence and preventing human malice from robbing him of a future. Stories like these are not just fiction! We see them played out in the lives of so many saints who were witnesses of hope even amid the most horrid examples of human evil. We can think of Saint Maximilian Mary Kolbe, Saint Josephine Bakhita, and Blessed Józef and Wiktoria Ulma and their seven children.

Dear young people, do not be afraid to share with others the hope and joy of the risen Christ! Nurture the spark that has been kindled in you, but at the same time share it. You will come to realize that it grows by being given away! We cannot keep our Christian hope to ourselves, like a warm feeling, because it is meant for everyone. Stay close in particular to your friends who may be smiling on the outside but are weeping within, for lack of hope. Do not let yourselves be infected by indifference and individualism. Remain open, like canals in which the hope of Jesus can flow and spread in all the areas where you live.

Have a discussion as a class, how does this extract make you feel? Why do you think Pope Francis chose to focus on the theme of hope for young people this year? Let us know what you thought about in the comments below!

Take a time of reflection to pray for those young people that Pope Francis mentions, those who may not be feeling hopeful, may not feel the light of the sun.

We join our prayers with Mary our Mother as we say:

Hail, Mary, full of grace,
the Lord is with thee.
Blessed art thou amongst women
and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners,
now and at the hour of our death. 
Amen.

We end our prayer with the Sign of the Cross. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.


Day 3 – Hands

We begin our prayer today with the Sign of the Cross. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy spirit, Amen.

This week we have been focusing on the importance of the youth in our world and that you are all able to change the world with your voice and ideas.

Sticking with this theme today we would like you to discuss with a partner and your form what three laws or rules you come up with would help better our world and bring Gods rich blessings down on us as Peter mentioned in the scripture we head on day one. These can be ones you have made up or you could change an existing law.

Once you as a form have come up with three laws comment them below and we can see how you would better our world with your ideas!!

The reason we have done this today is because you are the next generation who will inherit the earth. You will become those with a say and a voice and so should keep with you the ideas you have made today for your ideal world as Pope Francis said yesterday in his letter “Do not let yourselves be infected by indifference and individualism. Remain open, like canals in which the hope of Jesus can flow and spread in all the areas where you live.” He is telling us to remain open to each other and to allow our thoughts and hope of a better future to guide us. To use the Hope and love Jesus gives us to spread that same love and hope to all.

We finish our time of prayer by thinking about the voiceless, those young people around the world that have no say and those that are being supressed from speaking out against injustice.

We pray for them as we say:

Our Father, Who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy Will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. Amen

We end our prayer with the Sign of the Cross. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.

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10 Comments

  • We will celebrate youth this week by
    – Spending time with friends
    – enjoy school
    – Go ice skating
    – Spend time with our families

  • The extract made us feel more passionate about the rising of Jesus Christ, and made us realise how important it is to help people more around this time of year.

  • We can celebrate our youth by :
    -going on trips
    -spending time with all friends
    – spending time with families
    -and listen to each other
    -Go play outside activities

  • We can celebrate our youth by :
    -going on trips
    -spending time with all friends
    – spending time with families
    -and listen to each other
    -Go play outside activities.

  • Our 3 laws to better the world:
    1. No littering
    2. No bullying
    3. No stealing

    We also want to add an extra law that is ‘No war’ to help with peace on Earth.

  • We concentrate on hope as there is alot going on atm. It is too easy to be caught up in the cares of the world, as we confess it and our most grievous faults, and to lose sight of the light of God that shines down upon us.

  • 9K1 had these three rules/ideas
    – We would like to be able to go to the loo whenever we like, especially during lessons
    – Make the weekend three days long (Make Friday part of the weekend)
    – Wear what you like to school
    – Allow phones in school
    – When you turn 18 you should get a £1000 bonus
    – Make the tax for rich people larger
    – Drive a car from 16

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