This past weekend, on a cold Friday night, roughly 30 young men and women attended a talk given outside around a camp fire at the St. Theresa Shrine in Nasonville. The talk, delivered by a Catholic priest from the Diocese of Providence, covered the topic of the Four Last Things: Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell. Although it was a comprehensive explanation of the Church’s teaching on these topics, many of the young people were engaged and curious about this area of their faith which they had not heard much about in the course of their normal worship. At the end of the talk, these young people asked insightful and challenging questions which led to some great discussions as well as thoughtful and genuine concerns about their faith.
After the discussion finished, all of these men and women walked over to the chapel for exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and they prayed the rosary for the pope and the Church. At the end of Benediction, many stayed longer to offer prayers and thanksgiving to God before going downstairs for fellowship and refreshments. With the ongoing Synod on the Youth, it seems that authentic Catholic teachings, along with genuine traditional forms of prayer and worship, are drawing many young men and women to discover the mystery of God.
These young men and women hungered for something deeper than feel-good theology, relativistic morality and sentimental Catholicism. The true beauty of Catholicism needs to be preached in all its glory, in all its challenges, and always about Jesus Christ and his crucifixion. Many of these young men and women want a challenge. They seek the truth and are willing to take up the Cross of Christ if we offer it to them through the preaching of authentic Catholicism.