Youth ministry celebration teaches teens about their faith

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - There's a whole lot of praise and worship at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center this weekend for the 37th Annual Diocese of Biloxi Youth Ministry Celebration.

Catholic teens in grades 9-12 are at this event that's themed-Sail to the Light. As we found out that theme is helping teens learn more about their faith.

Hundreds of teens representing 26 parishes from across the coast are spending three days in Biloxi to celebrate being Catholic as a diocese under one roof. According to organizers this event allows teens to hear the word of God in creative ways that teach them the concepts of their faith.

"Whether it's hearing a guest speaker talk about how great and the great love of god is that when you build and build all of these concepts when we come to celebrate the mass it all takes on a whole new meaning," said Diocese of Biloxi Youth Director Ray Lacy.

A meaning that Lacy says teens will understand.

"I really like all the skits and prayer services that the spirit movers lead because it's a modern day way to show people how prayer really is," said Katherine Taylor, a 12th grader and spirit mover.

Teens shared their artistic side by showcasing this year's theme-Sail to the Light. They made displays, decorated banners and created works of art with donated food for the needy.

"The banners over here they represent each church. It's just something we do. They vote on them at the end. You get to meet new people and it brings us really close together and you just learn so much about your faith," said Brooks Hoda, a 12th grader and spirit mover.

"The ultimate goal of this event is to give our young people a foundation to take what they hear this weekend out into the world and to live it day in, day out," said Lacy.

With 460 teens taking part in the event, organizers say this is the largest group they've had since Hurricane Katrina. Planning and fundraising for the event began in January. It ends tomorrow with mass led by the bishop.

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