Confirmation Retreat – March 2011

Over the weekends of 18th – 20th February, and 18th – 20th March, 46 of our Confirmation Group attended the Diocesan Retreat Centre, St Vincent’s, in Whitstable, Kent for the Confirmation retreat.

The weekend is an opportunity for the group to bond as a team, explore their faith in ways which we are unable to facilitate in quite the same way here in the parish, explore different ways of praying, connect with the Holy Spirit in discussion, drama and art, and generally enjoy a much wider experience of “Church” than we are used to.    On the Saturday afternoon we went 10 pin bowling and for a walk on the beach (a short walk during the February trip as it was raining, and a much longer one in March as the sun was out).   On Saturday evening, we had a very moving Mass with Gospel dramas and much singing, followed by a quiz (in which the leaders did rather badly)!

The team leading the retreat are an amazing group of people, many of whom are taking distance learning degrees in youth ministry and chaplaincy, and in many cases are only 6 – 8 years older than the young people themselves (the catechists from Tolworth only being a couple of years older than that – well, in mind, if not body!!).   They are an inspiration, and as always, give 150% to the young people.   In fact, they said that the two retreats from Tolworth this year we amongst the most rewarding out of any retreats they had run due to the exceptional way in which our young people engaged and gave of themselves!

Well done all!

Andrew Richardson