Helllloooooo! Oh my gosh! Wow! What an incredible 10 days that I have had. I have so much to chat about and reflect on, so bear with be as I take the next little while to talk about all the going-ons in my life at this time. :) :)
From #Steubie14 to Aruba to #NASavannah. I mean. I can't even describe to you how blessed I am. God has given me such an incredible life, and I am so happy to share it with so many amazing people. And then talk allll about it with even MORE people. haha. I love blogging.
I will have a bigger, more personal, reflection from the Steubenville conference soon, but for now I thought I'd share my experience with you. It was my first time attending and I was really looking forward to it! If you ever have the chance to go to one.. GO! As a chaperone with the youth or to any one of their other adult based ones. The music, talks, atmosphere... all of it is just amazing.
I had a few firsts that weekend... first time to the conference, first time as a chaperone for teens, first time being denied confession (another story for another time). It was a bit overwhelming and slightly stressful at the beginning, because as a chaperone, what exactly was my role? Was I to follow the kids all over the place? How would I know where they are? Who exactly is my responsibility? When/how do I engage them about their experience/feelings/thoughts during the talks/reflections/adoration?
It was a lot. But, I really took Martha's advice to just be immersed in the weekend. Be involved, sing loud, ask questions. What do the teens need from me? For me to be who I am. Do I love praise and worship? Yes! Then I needed to allow myself to let the Holy Spirit do His thing. Did I think a talk was awesome or something was funny? Yes! Then say so and laugh! I had to be fully engaged in all that was happening, so that I could be exactly where the teens were at.
And for the most part, I think that strategy worked. I know the conference was for the teens, but God worked on my heart... a lot. And it was a joy to share that with my small group. It was a joy to see the teens have some intense emotional and spiritual experiences. It was fun to watch them sing LOUD and run up to the stage for each and every mini concert. To laugh at the silly jokes from the presenters. Then be hit in the face (and heart) by something profound from one of the talks.
|Beginning of a morning session... the teens just flock to the stage|
for the great music!!
A few moments that stand out from the weekend:
- Um, 2,000+ teens all in one room singing LOUD and praising the Lord. As I tweeted, "For all the people that think Catholics are boring should really hang out with Chris Stefanik and Jon Niven... &2k teens!" Because.. really, you should.
- My small group. What an amazing group of young women.
- The same 2,000+ teens quiet. Absolutely quiet when Jesus in the Eucharist first came into the room. I mean... you could hear a pin drop.
- When I was in line for confession at 6:35AM, and there was ALREADY a group of teens waiting. Beeeeautiful. The grace is real, people, and the teens know it.
|We all got that Catholic Swag. ;)|
Oscar Rivera is a talented rapper/speaker. I think he really connected
with so many of the teens.
God is good. So. Good.
Up next will be a little recap of all things Aruba! :) Stay tuned!!