PORTLAND, Maine — On Good Shepherd Sunday (April 25) Catholics reflect on how Jesus, who speaks of himself as the “good shepherd,” lays downs his life for his sheep and how we, the faithful, can become more like the Good Shepherd in our daily lives through self-sacrifice, love and uniting together under our loving God.
Fittingly, it is the day that has been selected for “One Shepherd, One Flock,” a live, virtual, and interactive gathering for all Maine Catholic youth from 6:30-7:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 25. As was done last year, you can meet as a group at one location or individually at home.
The event will feature prayer, activities, short reflections, and games, including “Shepherdy!” which is a takeoff on “Jeopardy!,” and an appearance by Bishop Robert Deeley.
“Any high school youth or youth minister can participate,” said Shawn Gregory, coordinator of youth ministry for the Diocese of Portland. “Participants will gain a sense of connection with others in the Lord’s flock, and everyone will be amused by all of the sheep puns that the Catholic Youth Leadership Team has put together!”
April 25 is also Vocations Sunday, and participants will pray that the Church may be provided with the leaders needed to do its work of spreading the Gospel. The virtual gathering will also celebrate the many gifts young Catholics bring to the Church.
“The pandemic has challenged us to look at things differently,” said Lori Dahlhoff, director of the Office of Lifelong Faith Formation. “But our faith unites us, our hope lifts us, and our love sustains us. It will be wonderful for our young Catholics to gather virtually and celebrate being Catholic in our faith, hope, and love.”
“I pray that the faith of the young people participating will be strengthened through this unique experience,” said Bishop Deeley. “Even virtually, I think these young people will deepen their appreciation of what believing means and what a difference it makes in the way they live. The Church has always been blessed with the presence of young people alive in faith and eager to serve the Lord Jesus.”
For guidelines and registration information, visit www.portlanddiocese.org/content/maine-catholic-youth-gathering.
If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Gregory at 207-773-6471 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For a flyer promoting the gathering, visit www.portlanddiocese.org/sites/default/files/files/Youth%20Gathering%20Flyer.pdf.
Those wishing to participate are asked to register by noon on Monday, April 19.