In 1985 the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales called for an annual celebration of the life of young people in the Church. The Solemnity of Christ the King, the last Sunday of the liturgical year, was chosen to be National Youth Sunday (NYS).
The aims of NYS are to aid the whole of the parish to celebrate the life, mission and ministry of the young people in their faith community.
It is an opportunity for young people to:
• Show what their faith means to them and how they live it in their world;
• Reach out and be of service;
• Foster better communication between ages;
• Understand the liturgy more fully.
The theme this year is “Lift up your hearts“, inspired by the New Translation of the Missal. We want to facilitate young people in delving deeper into the Mass and find new inspiration in the Eucharist. This year on the NYS websitewww.nationalyouthsunday.org.uk you’ll find everything you need to start planning for our national day of prayer celebrating young people.
In addition to the usual planning helps for NYS itself, which this year falls on 20th NOVEMBER, we’ve put together 4 interactive sessions that explore different aspects of the Mass using games, high energy activities, art, films, discussion and prayer. Leaders can choose to run all 4 sessions, or just 1 or 2 instead. Each session is really easy to run, with a kit list, full details of activities, and links to YOUCAT (Youth Catechism for the Catholic Church) for further reflection. There’s also a lot of practical help on the website covering everything from getting a group together to setting up a room, with printable posters, a Mass guide and ideas for what to do next.
These resources can either be run over the next couple of months, or used at any time as an introduction to the Mass for young people. They would work well in a Confirmation Programme, or as an Advent/Lent group as well.