TAKING an active role in their church community and making young people more visible in all aspects of society has earned 192 local teenagers a much-coveted John Paul II award.
The young people were awarded the distinction of a John Paul II award at a special ceremony in St Clare’s Church, Graiguecullen last week, attended by Bishop Denis Nulty, Fr John Dunphy, PP, Graiguecullen/Killeshin, their parents and extended families.
A total of 26 parishes and six Carlow schools ‒ St Leo’s College, Knockbeg College, Tyndall College, Presentation College, Askea, CBS Academy, Carlow and Gaelcholáiste Cheatharlach ‒ were represented at the ceremony.
Speaking to the young people, Fr Dunphy shared his experience of the positive effects of the Pope John Paul II award programme on his parish.
The awards were created to commemorate the late Pope John Paul II, who was so committed to young people.
The accolade is a faith-achievement award for young people between the age of 16 and 18. It is non-competitive, inclusive, flexible and voluntary and enables participants to take an active part in the life of their church.
The award is committed to helping young people enhance their spiritual, physical, emotional and social development through participation in school, parish and community activities.
As well as the feeling of personal achievement, a participant will gain from taking part in the award and involvement will help demonstrate the young person’s commitment to a task and goal.
Awards are earned by taking part in parish and social activities for one hour a week over eight, 14 or 20 weeks. There are three awards – gold, silver and bronze. Those who have earned gold have a further option of completing the Papal Cross Award.