10 Jun 2020
Changing the way young people experience Church
The Southern Cross | June 2020
The suspension of Masses and cancellation of gatherings over the past few months have proved challenging for parishioners, but for young people the opportunity to readily access more resources online has been a welcome addition to their faith lives, as LINDY McNAMARA reports.
They say every cloud has a silver lining and while the coronavirus restrictions have kept people apart it seems young people in the Archdiocese have welcomed the opportunity to access resources and participate in events at the touch of their fingertips.
When Masses were suspended and large gatherings cancelled in March, the Catholic Office for Youth and Young Adults (COYYA) knew it was going to need to come up with some creative ways to keep young people engaged, connected and ‘attending’ events.
According to coordinator Peter Bierer, the re-invented offerings have been embraced by the youth of the Archdiocese who are relishing the chance to nurture their faith through social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram as well as the COYYA website. And with the new ‘normal’ being so well received, he believes we can expect many changes in the way young people ‘experience’ Church in the future.
“One of interesting pieces of information we gleaned from past forums was that young people wanted the ability to connect at times ‘when I am available’, and to be part of the community in a different way,” he said.
“The restrictions in place now are pulling out those opportunities. They can now access on-demand for so much of what they do… they can watch live stream Masses at different times and not just in real time; all the faith forming, catechetical and spirituality resources are now available for them to connect in a way that suits them.
“They can go to their podcast, go to their social media and now – because there are so many more resources available – find something that is relevant to them.”