Tag Archives: Edwin Fawcett

Catechetical Resources: Video Clips…

Here are three video clips I’ve found recently which I think will be great to add to our little catechetical ‘stores’ for future use…

Number One. Liturgy (Adult Catechesis) I love this clip! It shows the continuity, difference and complementarity of the liturgical styles of Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis. We hear quite a bit of talk where people – depending on their own preferences – either bemoan Pope Francis’s liturgy and long for Pope Benedict’s, or on the contrary, enthuse about what a breath of fresh air Pope Francis’s approach is, compared to the supposedly stuffy approach of Pope Benedict. None of these attitudes will do! Let us be faithful to each one. This video shows it wonderfully. Thank you to Fr James’s blog where I found this.

Number Two. Confession (Youth Catechesis) No one beats John Pridmore for evangelising young people on Confession. (In fact, it was his testimony – which I have now heard at least a hundred times 😉 – that made me make my first full Confession at age 17) In the Confirmation session I used to lead on Confession, I always tried to ensure we had a young person give their testimony to the candidates on Confession. There is nothing like a young person, speaking from the heart, and exposing their own vulnerability, to enable young people themselves to go with courage to the confessional and open their hearts fully to Christ. However, if you do not have a young person to share such a testimony, I’d say this little clip is the next best thing.

Number Three. Evangelisation (Young People) This awesome little music video from Edwin Fawcett is ideal for ‘primary evangelisation’ of young people. As I’ve mentioned constantly on this blog, we must never jump straight into catechesis with young people – we need to spend time evangelising, allowing Christ to attract their hearts first. Unless some level of conversion has happened, catechesis will be like empty words to them. Resources for a youth evangelisation retreat are like gold dust – these are the priceless tools we can use to allow God to reach into young people’s hearts and call them to conversion. Edwin is a first-class youth evangelist. (The period of evangelisation in our Confirmation programme always used to include a praise and worship session with him… now he’s onto bigger and better things 😉 ) I love this video – it reaches into broken youth culture and allows God to draw young people to himself.

Flame Congress

Well, you have to admit it. CYMFed did a great job. Ten years ago Catholic youth ministry could not have pulled together something like that. Twelve years ago when I was confirmed, the local ‘youth ministry expert’ came to run a post-Confirmation day with us which, among other things, involved us painting a stone with something that expressed who we were. At fifteen years old, this activity, to put it mildly, turned me off being a Catholic quite considerably and sent me off in search of much less cringeworthy evangelical youth gatherings with my friends. Nowadays, going by what we saw at Flame, there aren’t many youth ministry gurus left who would subject teenagers to painting stones.

Our teenagers loved it. Highlights were the Glee musical flashmob and the interview with Paralympian Stef Reid. I admit that my group leader friend and I laughed out loud with embarrassment at Fr Timothy Radcliffe’s wonderful “Ri-Hanna” blip. But, ironically, it was one of my fifteen-year-old brother’s best bits: “Yeah that priest dude was a legend!” Err…really? Well, OK then. If you say so.

Most impressive by far was the fact that thousands of Catholic teenagers (most of whom, let’s face it, were not practising their faith) participated in moments of silent Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in a packed out Wembley Arena. That, along with Edwin Fawcett’s considerable talent at getting young people to sing and actually enjoy themselves, and Paschal Uche’s never-failing ability to inspire young people in their faith, showed our country’s youth ministry at the best it’s ever been (in my lifetime, anyway). God bless Paschal Uche. He is a household name now in Catholic circles and is invited to speak at just about everything. Paschal dropped into the parish yesterday and I was only glad he left right before the Confirmation candidates arrived as we’d have had lots of starstruck girls on our hands.

Now, onward and upward…

In the next post or two, I’d like to share some reflections on where youth ministry can still improve from here.