Diocesan Youth Ministry Update on Spring 2021
2020 has been a tough year for everyone, and our diocesan youth community is no exception. After cancelling planned events in the spring and forgoing events in the fall, we find ourselves a bit depleted but still hopeful heading towards the new year. That being said, the Diocesan Youth Leadership Committee and Happening Steering Committee are announcing several potential dates to gather the diocesan youth community.
• February 6-7: high school program
• March 19-21: Happening #84
• April 10-11: middle school program
• May 15-16: 5th Grade Bridge Retreat
As you'll notice, these dates imply overnight programs. We understand that whatever in-person gathering we plan is dependent upon meeting health and safety measures outlined by the CDC, the diocese, host parishes, and other localities, so these dates are set with a tentative, "if all goes well," mentality. More realistically, these events (with the possible exception of Happening) would likely be reduced to Saturday-only activities in order to take place in-person. The DYLC is also open to exploring virtual programming options.
Should events be able to take place in-person safely, we will require safety protocol such as wearing a mask and remaining 6ft apart from each other. We will also need to be mindful of capping our capacity to a safe level. To help us gauge participation, we're releasing an event interest form. We encourage everyone--parent/guardian, youth, formation leader--to complete this interest form, as it will also help us shape our program offerings. As the event dates approach and if in-person gathering is likely, we will then release registration, paying particular attention to the interest form respondents.
Regarding Happening #84, the staff application is now available. You'll notice the disclaimer is more flexible as it pertains to staff meetings since we'll need to play things by ear with COVID. Additionally, we are permitting students who graduated high school in the spring of 2020 to apply due to the circumstances. Please note that in order to maintain a safe capacity (should Happening take place in-person at all), it is likely not everyone who applies will be selected.
Please keep in mind that while we're taking this step forward, we are also prepared to cancel events if conditions are unsafe. We hope to be able to initiate cancellations at least a month out from the schedule date, but we reserve the right to cancel closer to the date if conditions worsen.
If you have any questions, don't hesitate to reach out to Katelyn Kenney. We are praying for the best case scenarios where we can gather together soon.
Tags: Youth Formation