June 11-12, 2016

Friends, 

Last week I read about 2 drownings of young men (17 and 22 years old), both accidental, one young man was actually a lifeguard. There was a news story this morning (6/2/16) about the number of teenage fatalities that occur in automobile accidents from Memorial Day to Labor Day each year. The numbers rise dramatically during the summer. 

Every day we hear about the tragic and sudden death of many of our young people from alcohol poisoning and overdose. How traumatic it is for any family and neighborhood to experience the loss of a teenager or young adult either suddenly or through illness. I hear the stories and read the obituaries and my heart aches for their loved ones. I also realize that the world loses their energy, gifts, creativity and intellect. 

We all know how exciting life can be at a young age and how challenging it can be as well. We know the excitement of getting our first job, falling in love, getting our license and having little or no responsibilities. We also realize how overwhelming it can be to face our emotions, discover our sexuality and realize that our choices have consequences and repercussions. Those years are meant to be wonderful, but can be challenging as well. 

Society is changing at a pace that is unpredictable. Our young people are bombarded on and by social media. I don't live in their world and I cannot imagine the tension that world creates between parents and their children as parents try to control the environment they believe is healthier for their children. 

I want to pay tribute to the young people of our Collaborative. We are so blessed with their presence. I know the Church can be such a positive influence in their lives and a great support to their parents. What a privilege that is for us. Many of our families are involved with our parishes and we have the honor of being invited into their lives. There are many young people I see in our neighborhoods and on our streets that we don't know. I am sure some are not Catholic, but many others I am sure are from Catholic families who are no longer connected with the Church. This is a huge loss for us and I believe in the lives of our youth. 

I pray throughout our neighborhoods that our young people over the summer months enjoy their leisure time with their families and friends. I pray that they spend time with those who bring out the best in them and that they make positive choices. I pray that they realize that their decisions reflect on their families and their community. 

Finally, I pray that they realize God's presence in their lives and choose to celebrate in a faith community. 

Enjoy Life 
Fr Coyne 

 

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