St Peter Chanel Hastings hosts a youth Mass every second Sunday to give young people a chance to lead the congregation in worship.
Up to 20 young people are committed to a range of ministries from reading and taking up the collection to playing guitar and singing.
‘I work alongside them,’ says their adult coordinator, Tevita Faka’osi. ‘But I also step aside and let them come through with their own ideas. Our aim is to encourage many more young people to come to Mass through good liturgy that is relevant to them.’
Tevita’s daughter, Judy Sali-Siaki, provides a useful link between the generations when it comes to music that strikes the right note with younger parishioners.
‘I like what we have to sing,’ says 11-year-old Christine Field, ‘because it makes me feel happy and full of love.’
On Sunday 11May, two college students were commissioned as Ministers of the Eucharist. Both Vina Onesi and Mary Kepu felt they wanted to give something back to the church.
‘This is something for younger ones to see us do so they can realise they have a choice to help out, too.’ Says Vina.