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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

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Day 1 - 'You Are the Light of the World'

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Day 2 - 'No Smouldering Wicks'

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Day 3 - 'Let Your Light Shine'

The participants awoke on day three with just a little bit more energy and enthusiasm as they have the days previously as they were greeted with cooler Victorian weather. Following breakfast Christian Fini and James Edwards shared a ‘break down’ of the ACYF theme song ‘Your Spirit’, explaining what it all means and how it can be relevant to everyone as they truly invoke the gift of the Holy Spirit in their lives. Morning Prayer followed and the ‘Catching Fire’ discussion group showed through the representation of candles, how light of the world can be shared with one another and how it can be used to its full potential. Kyle Hoad then gave a talk on the day’s theme ‘Let Your Light Shine’, and explained how easy, comfortable and rewarding it can be. He shared how opening yourself to the will of God can be one of the best ways to let your light shine in the world and how Mary’s acceptance and humility can be an example of this. Discussion groups followed where the participants engaged in an activity where they were asked to decorate an Oblate Youth Encounter candle that will eventually be given out to the Oblate communities at the end of the camp. Even though some participants got a little excited and carried away with the painting, some lovely artwork was a result of the exercise. Fr Mark Edwards then spoke to the group and explained the upcoming Oblate Triennium which will celebrate the 200 years of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate in the world. Fr Mark mentioned the exciting celebrations that will be coming up, along with the hope and vision that an Oblate group will visit Aix en Provence around the time of the celebrations, perhaps encompassing World Youth Day in Poland in 2016. Carmela de Robertis then shared her experience from World Youth Day in Rio last year and how the pilgrimage has changed her view of the world. After community time the participants had the opportunity to perform they had been working on for the past few days. All of the groups showed off their dramatic talents with a special mention going to the ‘Bright Star’ group for their impressive soundtrack and almost soap opera type facial expressions. After a delicious dinner the final mass was celebrated by Christian Fini, joined by the visiting priests the Oblate Australian Provincial, Fr Leo Misfud. Fini spoke during the homily about how we are all called to be priests, prophets and kings and by dressing James Edwards in various costumes, Fini explained how we can share our light in the world by following the examples of Jesus. The participants’ spirits were high by the end of mass so the musicians treated everyone to a bit of a party with David Tobin’s impressive lights on show and the addition of glow sticks in the crowd. The ridiculously talented James Edwards and the ‘house band’ played the usual OYA favourites, ‘Seven Nation Army’, ‘Valerie’ and the hit made famous on  International Oblate Youth Encounter, ‘You’re the Voice’. The band surprised the group with an impromptu performance of ‘Get Lucky’ and the camp theme song ‘Happy’ by Pharrell Williams. The participants are currently wide awake at 1am playing table tennis, talking and laughing and writing affirmations to their old and new friends. Tomorrow will be a short day of breakfast, prayer and pack up so this late night/early morning community time is almost valuable. The past three days have gone far too quickly but bring on the last day of Encounter!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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