Monday, August 28, 2006
Youth 2000 Conference
On Thursday I drove over to Walsingham for the annual Youth 2000 prayer festival. There were about 1400 young people present from all over the country. On Sunday the celebrant at Mass was Bishop Patrick O'Donohue of Lancaster diocese. He had arrived the day before and spent Saturday night in the big tent hearing confessions.
The Franciscan Friars of the Renewal were present and doing great work. So also were four brothers and a sister from the Community of St John. There were also representatives from the Beatitudes, the Neo-Catechumenal Way, Miles Jesu, the Order of Friars Minor, the Dominicans (both Friars and sisters), as well as about twenty diocesan priests.
As always I spent my time hearing confessions, encouraging young people to acquire a plan of life, and talking about Christ's call. I was glad to meet about eight young men who are thinking about diocesan priesthood. None of them are from Southwark but I hope they were encouraged to take a further step towards responding to their vocation. Whatever diocese they belong to, if our work here helps they are, of course, welcome to keep in contact.