The UDYC committee have carefully considered past operation, future hopes and concerns in developing a youth ministry Missions Statement. The following has been formulated as a Mission statement for UDYC for youth ministry in the United Dioceses of Limerick, Killaloe and Ardfert:
“To provide opportunities which will facilitate and encourage Christian spiritual growth, fun and fellowship among young people from throughout the United Dioceses of Limerick and Killaloe”
President: Canon Jane Galbraith (Roscrea)
Chairperson: Nicola Downes (Castletown)
Secretary: Andrew O’ Brien (Castleconnell)
Treasurer: Edward Hardy (Banagher)
Public Relations Officer: Valerie Walker (Croom)
Newslink Correspondent: Kate O’Brien (Castleconnell)
Limerick Representatives: Kieran Sparling (Limerick City), Vacant *1
Killaloe Representatives: Grace Langley (Templederry), James Larkin (Newmarket-on- Fergus)
Ardfert Representatives: Vacant * 2
Ordinary Committee Members (5): Beverley Callender (Kilpeacon), Oscar Egbulam (Limerick City),
Aidan Larkin (Newmarket-on- Fergus), Anna Mae Powell (Nenagh), Vacant * 1
Representative to Diocesan Council for Mission: Vacant * 1
Villiers Representative: Alex Mooney (Shinrone)
Diocesan Council Representative: Canon. Jane Galbraith (Roscrea)
C.I.Y.D. Central Board: Valerie Walker (Croom)
(Edward Hardy is also on C.I.Y.D Central Board but elected by Standing Committee.)
UDYC has provided a comprehensive Diocesan programme throughout United Diocese of Limerick, Killaloe & Ardfert for over 40 years moving from a very socially centred content historically to a programme more centred on personal & spiritual development in recent years. The events of UDYC historically focused on a number of discos and dances, many day trips to very many parts of Ireland and well planned youth services every year catering for a 16 to 50 plus year old age group.
In more recent years a good solid range of day, weekend and weeklong events was provided. The programme offered catered primarily for children from eight years (3rd class national school) of age right up to young adults in mid-twenties.
The following are some of the key highlights from UDYC in recent years:
- The very many wonderful participants and leaders (over 300 during 2019) that came to events and really joined in with all aspects of the programme 100%. To see many happy faces during and at the end of the events, reading about positive experiences in evaluations and hearing superb stories from many parents/guardians and other family members.
- We know from feedback received the value of weekend and weeklong and longer events for building relationships for Young People and Leaders are hugely important for so many. In particular weeklong Summer Camps are hugely important.
- Importance of role of UDYC in Pastoral Care and support to Young People, Youth Leaders, Parents and Guardians.
- A key factor for Young People is meeting other young people throughout Ireland and Europe.
- Importance of Relational Youth Ministry experiences for young people and leaders. Many have reported friends for life from UDYC events.
- Many Young Adults have recorded that their involvement in UDYC has impacted their college and work life in a positive manner.
- UDYC has always welcomed everyone regardless of nationality, religious denomination or non-denominational, disability, sexuality etc.
- Representation at National Youth Forum organised by CIYD and inputs from Diocesan representatives.
- Summer Madness event in Northern Ireland remains the most positive experience for all that attend.
- International Exchange trip to Romania during 2018, hosting of International Exchange Trip in Ireland for 10 days in 2019 with Romanian and German Groups and finally in July 2022 the Exchange trip to Germany.
- Successful Fundraising and Appeal Initiatives to Parishes and Individuals held throughout the year and the positive impact on finances.
- Continued collaboration and sharing resources with Tearfund, Peter McVerry Trust, International Justice Mission, CIYD Central and Other Dioceses.
The volunteer committee of United Diocesan Youth Council of Limerick & Killaloe planned and successfully completed a good solid range of events up to start of March 2020. The Covid-19 Pandemic negatively impacted activities from March 2020 until June 2022. This was also a period of time when the committee of UDYC, Clergy, Bishop, Finance Committee and Diocesan Council reflected on the most effective manner for delivery of Youth Ministry going forward.
The Clergy grouping were keen to prioritize local ministry in regional hubs and organizing confirmation and other day events. U.D.Y.C committee created an online survey on youth ministry, which was shared throughout social media platforms and by email. The expectation that was derived from our young people and youth leaders prioritized meeting young people from other areas, weekend or week long events, international events, attending Summer Madness, Worship and teaching events. In summary, the output from survey was that there was an expectation of the provision of activities similar to UDYC programme offered up to start of pandemic.
It is good to report that in July 2022, U.D.Y.C re-commenced its activities following approval from Finance Committee and Diocesan Council in June 2022. At the time of writing it is good to report that the first few events had a solid numbers attending, with a good number of leaders willing to be involved and the events that have taken place were positive experiences. We look forward to reporting fully on the 2022 events in 2022 Diocesan Synod Book of Reports.
UDYC commenced 2021, with a small positive bank balance of €83 and with very limited activity during the year ended the year with a slightly larger positive balance of €647. UDYC committee remain committed to ensuring that the finances are maintained within budget and remain positive and wish to record the goodwill and financial support from so many continues to be really appreciated.
At present despite the tremendous efforts of Girls Friendly Society, Boys Brigade, Sunday Schools, a small number of local parish initiatives and UDYC there are huge gaps in our current delivery of effective Youth & Children’s Ministry in United Diocese. UDYC welcome proposals for creation and delivery of local hub, parochial or regional Youth & Children’s Ministry programmes throughout United Diocese thus providing solid foundations for the future.
UDYC looks forward to delivering proposed programme for the remainder of 2022 and beyond & looks forward to working in partnership with personnel in Tuam, Killala & Achonry in the future. Once again a huge big THANK -YOU to everyone.
United Diocesan Youth Council of Limerick, Killaloe & Ardfert