Last weekend, members of Oblate Youth Australia gathered at Mazenod College for Re-Encounter 2018, providing us with the opportunity to gather together as a community for the first time since the successful 2018 National Oblate Youth Encounter, held in January. This year’s Re-Encounter was an exciting one, with a number of major updates for Oblate Youth Australia.
The weekend started with two leadership formation sessions run by the National Co-ordinators targeting two major areas: (1) facilitating discussion groups; and (2) preparing liturgies. The sessions were extremely successful and allowed us to further enhance our ability to provide engaging and inviting experiences for our young people at future National Oblate Youth Encounters, as well as in our local communities and youth groups.
Following the formation, we gathered for our Annual General Meeting – reviewing the OYA Vision for 2018-2020 as well as hearing about the various activities occurring in our local communities. This included exciting developments at St. Eugene’s Parish in Burpengary (QLD) who are providing some exciting opportunities for the young people during the Year of Youth, as well as a number of events occurring at St. John Vianney’s Parish in Mulgrave (VIC). Furthermore, the National Co-ordinators officially launched two major changes for Oblate Youth Australia – the launch of the new OYA logo and the brand-new website. You can read more about these exciting new updates here.
Ending off the jam-packed day of formation, launches and meetings, we gathered together, all dressed up and ready for a night of ‘Casino Royale’ fun. Following a beautiful celebration of Mass in the brand new Mazenod College Chapel, we gathered in the cafeteria for an exciting night of delicious food and fun. Former member of OYA, Kyle Hoad, returned for the night to facilitate what would be an extremely mysterious and entertaining ‘Murder Mystery’ game. Each of us donned our new personalities (some of which included Casino Managers, Music Divas, High Rollers, Concierges and Sports Stars just to name a few) as each of us attempted to find out who killed Inspector Callahan! After 2 hours of intense interrogations, scavenging for clues and some very tense deliberation, it was discovered that the Sports Manager (aka. Alison Whitten!) was in deed the murderer! Although most of us were quite bummed about not discovering the murderer, we were all extremely entertained by the experience – thank you again to Kyle for taking the time to provide such an enjoyable night!
To conclude the weekend, we gathered together for some bowling before heading our separate ways until we next see each other to prepare for the next National Oblate Youth Encounter in 2019! Thank you to all the participants for attending the weekend and joining in the celebrations of our new logo and website as well as participating in the Formation and AGM. It’s incredible to see that even after 18 years, Oblate Youth Australia continues to be a thriving and inviting place for young people to gather in the spirit of the Oblate charism!
Written by: Tishan Lokuge