Feb. 5-11, 2004
Life is good
By Kristen Fox / SUN Staff Writer
SUN photo(s) Paul Finch
Christ the King Church hosts Mega Worship IV/Youth for Life
After being cancelled once due to sub-zero temperatures, Mega Worship IV/Youth for Life was held on Jan. 30 at Christ the King Church in Liverpool. The event was originally scheduled for Jan. 16 as a prayerful sendoff for the many diocesan youths who attended the March for Life in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 22. The slight change of plans did not keep over 50 students from coming out and celebrating their faith through songs, prayers and fun.
Regina Hickman, a senior at Bishop Ludden Jr./Sr. High School in Syracuse and a parishioner of Christ the King Church, emceed Mega Worship IV/Youth for Life. She said that the event was an opportunity for young people to show their support for life. “An unborn child is a life,” said Regina. “If we don’t speak for these babies, then they won’t be spoken for.”
Regina is one of the students who attended the March for Life, which brought together thousands of pro-life advocates from across the country. There are similarities between the annual march and the event at Christ the King, she said. “Both events show us that we aren’t alone in our pro-life beliefs,” explained Regina. “Sometimes it gets hard and other people might not understand why we are pro-life. Coming together with so many people who all stand for one thing is amazing.”
During Mega Worship IV/Youth for Life, students from several parishes prayed the rosary and reflected on Pope John Paul II’s encyclical on the rosary, written in October of 2000. Father John Werner, pastor of Christ the King Church, led the Benediction. There was also plenty of singing and hand clapping. Sister Mary Eileen Jewell, PVMI, who brought a group of students from St. John the Baptist Church in Rome, was invited to play the tambourine during a couple of songs. The Liturgical Dance Group from Bishop Ludden Jr./Sr. High School performed to “Mercy Me.”
Mark Romano, who belongs to the youth group at Christ the King Church, enjoyed the event. “It’s fun to come together and pray. Abortion isn’t right,” he said. Four students from Niagara College made a special trip to Syracuse for the Mega Worship IV/Youth for Life. “We thought we could show the younger students what it is like to be a college student and live out their faith in college,” said Matt Scheuer, of Liverpool. Matt and Kelly Colangelo, both freshmen, performed the “Matt and Kelly Skit” –– a fun Christian comedy show. “Faith can be fun, especially when you come together as a group,” remarked Kelly. She told the younger students to continue participating in faith-enhancing activities once they leave high school. “It is still possible to grow in your faith, even in college,” she said. “At Niagara, I am a part of Peace of Christ and the Social Justice Group. These groups are important to me because they help me to keep my faith strong and come together with people who share my beliefs,” Kelly said.
Mega Worship IV was the fourth in the series of “Mega Worship” youth events held at various churches in the diocese. Regina Harty, DRE at Christ the King Church, was pleased to have the opportunity to host the prayerful gathering. “We were thrilled to build a Mega Life night here at Christ he King. It gives the kids a sense of community and faith,” Harty said. She extended an invitation to all churches in the diocese to bring youths to the celebration. “We wanted to invite as many students as possible,” Harty said. Mary Connor and her sister Megan, both parishioners of Christ the King, attended the event together. They enjoyed the singing the best. Though they are young, the sisters got the message of the night. “Abortion is wrong,” said Mary, a sixth grader. “You shouldn’t take a little kid’s life because they aren’t born yet. You should love them.”