By Paul Cizek, Youth Minister
This past weekend, 6 youth and myself attended Bishops Ball – the annual December diocesan event for 6th-12th graders. There were just over two hundred participants for this weekend full of fun, worship, and hands-on outreach work. And to be honest, it’s hard to pick my favorite moment from a weekend with so much goodness.
Candidate 1: On Saturday evening, youth donned swanky dresses and bowties, sat down for a formal feast, worshipped with a Eucharistic feast, and then spent the rest of the night out on the dance floor – a much anticipated climax to the weekend. The lights were low, the music bumping, and the floor was crowded. But as our young Henry observed with all seriousness (and much to my amusement), “It’s not really a dance. They’re all just jumping around.” And this was mostly true, until they all did the Macarena.
Candidate 2: On Saturday, we all watched a documentary, Harvest of Dignity, about migrant farmworkers – primarily in North Carolina. Afterwards, youth had a chance to discuss it and respond. One youth in the small group I was a part of said, “It’s easy to not think about the conditions these people live in because we don’t see it. It’s hidden. But this movie sheds light on it and now it’s hard to ignore.” There were lots of head-nods in agreement from youth sitting around our circle. And while watching this documentary didn’t change the world, perhaps it planted a seed that will take root in the lives of one of these youth. Pray that some of these seeds found fertile soil.
Candidate 3: The Bishops came on Friday night and stayed through Sunday morning, remaining wonderfully accessible to youth throughout. They spoke when called upon or when they had something to share, but overall they were just there, accessible, and visibly glad to be there. This is one thing that’s so wonderful and unique about Bishops Ball. What a gift to have Bishops like this in our diocese!
So overall, Bishops Ball 2013 was awesome. I encourage you’ll to come out next year if you missed it!