CASTLECOMER Community School will be the venue for a weekend retreat for young people aged between 16 and 35 from April 19 to 21 next.
Organised by Youth 2000 Leinster, the retreat starts on Friday evening, April 19 and runs until Sunday afternoon.
Rob O’Hara, Leinster Regional Leader for Youth 2000, explained that the retreats are organised with the hope that people who have never before been to a retreat will come. “New people are especially welcome,” he says.
“Obviously if you can come to the whole retreat that is great, but it is also possible to pop in for a while and see how you find it. We promise a really warm welcome.”
He added, “For most people attending any Youth 2000 event for the first time, what strikes them most is the smiles on the faces of the people they encounter, the warmth and friendliness of the volunteers, the joy of the priests, the enthusiasm of the band, how they are made feel welcomed and all of this is part of what makes Youth 2000 events special.”
The programme for the weekend is well balanced with inspiring talks, workshops, Mass, a Healing Service on the Saturday night, games, music and plenty of time for chilling out and meeting new people.
Founded in 1990 by Ernest Williams in response to Pope John Paul II’s call to young people to evangelise their peers, Youth 2000 like to celebrate their faith with enthusiasm and joy and to share that faith with their peers. Their motto is Youth leading Youth to the heart of the Church.
There is a variety of events throughout the year ranging from the ultra-glamorous Youth 2000 ball in February to the ‘Holy Oxyegen’ summer festival in August, as well as over 30 prayer groups throughout the country which meet on a weekly basis, the Christmas Retreat and plenty of social outings including table quizzes, climbing Croagh Patrick and dodge ball competitions.
Events are run on a donation only basis and for details on upcoming events call 01-6753690 or check out youth2000.ie
Twenty-three year Susie is actively involved with Youth 2000 and recalls her own first experience of Youth 2000. “I remember the first time I went to a retreat. I really wasn’t at all sure of what to expect but I decided to take the plunge and go to a retreat in Dublin. The experience blew me away and I’ve been coming back ever since. Youth 2000 proved to me that in believing ‘we lose nothing, nothing of what makes life free, beautiful and great’. Instead, ‘only in this friendship are the doors of life opened wide’. Being involved in Youth 2000 changed my life. I just want to be able to share that with other people.”