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Youth Group Aims to Revive Spirituality

Students attend new Saint Wenceslaus lifeteen

Teens+gather+at+Lifeteen%E2%80%99s+kickoff+party
Teens gather at Lifeteen’s kickoff party

Teens gather at Lifeteen’s kickoff party

Photo by Lifeteen Core Team

Photo by Lifeteen Core Team

Teens gather at Lifeteen’s kickoff party

Zoe Clark, Copy Editor

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691 teenagers are registered to the Saint Wenceslaus parish. Factoring in those that attend mass but don’t belong to the parish, there are 700 students that Olivier Coutant, the parish’s new director of youth and young adult ministry, believes should have a free space to belong to within.

“There’s a need for all these people to have a place where they can all have community and find their place where they belong in the church,” said Saint Wenceslaus Youth Director Olivier Coutant. “There’s no such thing as a general sense of belonging; it’s all in a specific sense. We provide an environment where people can belong both to each other and to God,” Coutant said.

There is no certain person that is exactly the right fit, because everybody is the right fit.”

— Olivier Coutant

The program meets regularly on Sunday evening after the 5:30pm mass from 6:30 until 8:15 pm.

The program recently held their fourth group gathering on Sunday, Feb. 18. The group has developed a few regular attendees, and new people join every week.

“Everyone should at least give it a try, because you never know what you could be missing or the people that you could meet through this,” said senior Katrina Roth. “Everyone that’s there wants to be there and is a genuine person,” Roth said.

One amazing aspect of attending this new group is the opportunity to be a part of something and to help shape it into what you want it to be. As more join, the group continues to evolve.

Skutt Catholic students attribute a variety of reasons for joining the program.

“I decided to go to LifeTeen as a fun way to reunite with some of my old classmates from middle school, and as a way to strengthen my spiritual life,” said junior Michael Ryan.

Senior Jared Baumert credits his appearance at Lifeteen to an invitation to come by Olivier, himself. Once there, the inviting atmosphere encouraged Baumert to continue coming.

“They helped me feel included even though it was my first time, especially during the small groups,” said Jared Baumert. “ They also do lots of service events throughout Lent that I really want to do,” Baumert continued.

One of Lifeteen’s planned service events includes praying outside of Planned Parenthood. Originally scheduled for President’s Day, the inclement weather has postponed the event to Monday, March 5.

Many teenagers, especially those who attended Catholic grade schools and high schools, have grown up with religious education being about memorizing and learning all the facts with the grand culmination being a test or project.

“What we’re going for is yes, the facts are good, but they have to be in the right context,” Countant said. “The main thing is that [Lifeteen] is a place where you can be with other people, belong and have a good time while also talking about your faith.” Coutant continued.

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Clark - Copy Editor

Zoe became a member of The Flightline in August of 2017. She is a junior this year involved in robotics, academic decathlon, and many other electives, and spends what little free time she has reading. You can email her at [email protected]

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