November 12, 2010


Youth gathering plants seeds for NCYC 2011 in Indianapolis

It isn’t every day that you get 750 teenagers singing, dancing and praising God in unison.

But that’s exactly what happened on Nov. 7 at the Indianapolis Catholic Youth Conference 2010 at Bishop Chatard High School in Indianapolis.

And God willing, it will happen again—with thousands of young people from across the United States and Canada—when the Archdiocese of Indianapolis hosts the 2011 National Catholic Youth Conference at the Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium on Nov. 17-19, 2011.

If Sunday’s gathering, co-sponsored by the Archdiocese of Indianapolis and the Diocese of Lafayette, was a precursor to what will happen next November, then teenagers need to start marking their calendars—and getting mom and dad’s permission—to be a part of what will truly be a memorable gathering of what we will call the three “F’s”—faith, friendship and fun—in Indianapolis next fall.

With energetic young adults like Dan Harms and Kyle Heimann, who make up the speaker/music team known as Popple, and Catholic vocalist Sarah Bauer leading the young people, teenagers from both the Archdiocese of Indianapolis and Diocese of Lafayette spent a good part of the afternoon listening to how they all should be in “Pursuit of Glory,” the conference’s theme.

“I have competed well, I have finished the race; I have kept the faith. From now on, the crown of righteousness awaits me”

(2 Tm 4:7-8a). That Scripture verse served as a starting point for teenagers as they took part in several workshops that helped them better understand how to pursue God’s glory in their lives.

“God is calling us all to something,” said Kyle Heimann.

“True happiness is following … where God is calling us,” added Dan Harms.

During the daylong gathering, youths also had the opportunity to attend Mass, take part in eucharistic adoration and receive the sacrament of reconciliation.

The reverence the young people showed during adoration is something that we as a faith community should not be afraid to emulate. For those adults who wonder if our young people “get it” when it comes to embracing the Catholic faith, Sunday demonstrated that many teenagers indeed love their Church and its traditions.

Of course, teenagers being teenagers, there were lots of smiles, laughter and just plain fun, too, as the young people made the most of the entertaining activities offered during breaks in the thematic park located in one of the school’s gymnasiums.

In the end, though, the day was about growing closer to God, and reflecting on how he wants teenagers to “pursue his glory” through their vocations in life.

We can’t forget, though, that Sunday’s gathering was meant to plant a seed for young people. Next November’s National Catholic Youth Conference in Indianapolis, with the theme “Called to Glory,” will serve as another step in helping young people nurture their life’s vocation.

Young people and their parents are encouraged to follow the planning for the 2011 National Catholic Youth Conference in Indianapolis by logging on to or by visiting a specially created Facebook page at

As we celebrate a successful 2010 Indianapolis Catholic Youth Conference and prepare for the national gathering in 2011, we hope and pray that these gatherings will bear much fruit.

We also remind people of faith that we all have vocations in life.

God is calling each of us to pursue his glory.

Are we listening?

—Mike Krokos

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