Dancing the night away

Holy Family Church will host intergenerational dance this spring

By Deacon Tom Picciano
Sun contributing writer

   ENDWELL — Teens won’t be the only ones enjoying an upcoming dance at Holy Family Parish. “Shall We Dance?” will also include guests over 60 years of age.

   “We are doing this beautiful dance to bring all our generations together in our parish in a social atmosphere. We want all our teens to know the person they sit next to on Sunday,” said Youth Minister Bernadette Repetto. “To do that we must worship together and socialize together.”

   Youth group members will be sending invitations to relatives, neighbors and parishioners over the age of 60. They’re also going to decorate the parish hall and prepare food for the dance. The teens will also select appropriate music which will span the generations from the 1930s to the present time. Adults will share stories with the young people about their time as teenagers. The youth will have a chance to talk with the adults about what it’s like to be a teen today. Another age group will be taking part in the event to help the teens and older people relate.

   “We will have young adults in their late 20s and early 30s also involved by helping to also meet and greet all our guests as they arrive and also learn dances from that time and to help ‘break the ice’ between the two generations,” Repetto said. Singles and couples in their 20s and 30s are encouraged to take part.

   “This will help young adults to realize that we need them in our church and its future. Young adults in their 20s and 30s are encouraged to become active in parish life, lectoring, ushering and teaching religious education and being part of the youth ministry team,” Repetto added.

   “They have so much to offer to our younger kids and they serve as great role models. Our young adults are in our midst just waiting to be invited to parish life and here at Holy Family, I say, ‘Welcome! We need you and God needs you to continue building his kingdom,” Repetto said.

   Repetto feels the dance is a way to begin building bridges between generations.

   As part of the overall Youth Ministry program, she wants to reach out to the young adults.

   “We want them to feel that they are the future of the church,” she said. “Just because you are confirmed, we have not forgotten about you as you went off to college. Perhaps you may live somewhere else than you did as a teen. But the Catholic Church is everywhere and we want you to be the foundation of who we are and what we are as Catholics.”

   Repetto believes that traditional bulletin announcements, flyers and posters aren’t the best way to get the teens and young adults to participate. She prefers personal invitations to events, taking the time to ask people to participate and invite others.

   “That is my ultimate goal of our Youth Ministry program here at the Church of the Holy Family,” Repetto said. “We build our community through youth ministry events and then we send our young adults out to evangelize and become the Apostles of Christ.”

  The intergenerational “Shall We Dance?” is planned for late spring. Repetto encourages anyone who wants information on the dance or on the Holy Family Youth Ministry program to contact her at the parish. The email address is ymholyfamily@gmail.com. The parish phone number is (607) 754-1266.

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