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VERITAS 2017: The Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is His Name

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A wide range of workshops will be on offer to participants, to cater to all age groups, targeting different aspects which a young person may have to deal with in living the Catholic faith to the full. Photo: Matt Lim.

By Josh Low

Only a few more weeks away, the annual Veritas Youth Festival is set to capture the hearts and minds of young people across Perth.

Running over the weekend of 30 June to 2 July, this year’s festival will be held at the University of Notre Dame Australia’s Fremantle Campus’ Drill Hall and surroundings.

The festival kicks off with the Friday night rally involving special guest and X-Factor contestant, Fr Rob Galea, who will deliver the first keynote speech for the weekend.

Other keynote speakers for the event include Anita Finneran, Caritas Australia’s Justice Educator for WA, Joel Massad from 24/7 Youth Ministry Perth and Karl Brown from Ignite Youth Perth.

Each of the first three keynote speeches will be made addressing different parts of this year’s theme for the festival, “The Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is His Name.” (Luke 1:49) with Karl Brown speaking about the Magnificat.

A wide range of workshops will be on offer to participants, to cater to all age groups, targeting different aspects which a young person may have to deal with in living the Catholic faith to the full.

Workshops will be addressing topics such as deal breakers in relationships, evangelisation, having a personal relationship with Christ, mental health and wellbeing, gender issues and the spiritual power of habit.

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Rachel Hicks (far right) said Veritas provided an amazing opportunity for reflection on the importance of God in everyday life. Photo: Matt Lim.

A highlight of the Veritas Youth Festival is the ‘Mighty Fest’ night, which will see agencies and movements across the Archdiocese showcasing their charisms by running a stall, offering information and engaging with young people.

Past participant Rachel Hicks, 22, says the weekend is an amazing opportunity for reflection on the importance of God in everyday life.

“Veritas provided the opportunity to reflect on how God is meant to be in every aspect and every moment of life if only I let him.

“I learnt about doctrine and truths about God, presented in a practical way and have always come away from the weekend totally excited about the faith here among the youth of Perth.

“It prompted me to reflect on the concrete ways in which I can open the door to God in my life and relationships and how I can let Him be my only goal and the pilot of my life,” she said.

Ms Hicks said that being able to connect with and hear from other young Catholics was another great benefit.

“As young Catholics we are living in a changing society while trying to stay strong to our beliefs and values, so it was amazing to feel connected and part of a like-minded community.

“There are also usually some testimonies, which are always both heart wrenching and heart-warming.

“One that has stood out a lot to me touched on the power of prayer, where a young man spoke about his experiences of being caught up in a gang, addicted to drugs and alcohol and how he lost the faith.

“Through the prayers of his mother and the grace of God, he managed to find his way back to God and inspire others.

Reflecting on this year’s theme for the festival, Ms Hicks says she it reminds her of God’s unconditional love.

“God is truly holy and mighty and despite His awesome nature and the fact that He is creator of everything, cares so deeply about each and every one of us.

“He’s already done the great things for us; we just have to trust in Him and where He leads us.

“We don’t have to search for validation anywhere else in the world,” she concluded.