Author Archives: babrams

    Five, Six, Seven…

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    May 14, 2013

    My head is spinning, and I’m not sure if it’s due to the dizzying pace with which our Norfolk community is expanding or if I stood up too fast after the consecration (could go either way).  God has blessed our community so abundantly over the past two years that we should probably all be blushing.

     Several weeks ago three men made candidate commitments to our community, meaning that they are formally committing to discern full membership in the Youth Apostles community.  That brings to seven the total number of men who have become candidates in Norfolk since we moved here in June 2011.

    Our joy in welcoming so many great men into our nascent community in Norfolk is surpassed only by our humility – because it is clear to all of us how God is working through us to reach the young people in this area.  His hand is evident in the great men he has sent us, the support we have received from so many people in the Hampton Roads area (Pastors, youth ministers, friends), and the opportunities he has provided us to do ministry.

    If it be God’s will our community will continue to grow in Norfolk.  However, the growth is secondary; our purpose is to lead young people to Christ – that is why we are here and that continues to be the force that will drive us.  We give thanks to God for the opportunity to serve him in Norfolk, and for the great men he continues to send to assist us in these efforts.  We look forward to continuing to share God’s good news in Norfolk for years to come!

    –Chip Snyder

    Three Men Make Candidate Commitments in Norfolk

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    The Norfolk community welcomed three new candidates on Tuesday night, April 23 in a liturgy held at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in the Ocean View neighborhood of Norfolk.

    Norfolk Community

    Brian Fila is a student at Old Dominion University studying accounting and business administration.  He is from West Chester, Pennsylvania.  Dan Madison is also a student at ODU from the Norfolk area, and is studying communications. Rick Matheny is a sailor in the Navy and is based in Norfolk.  Rick currently lives in Hampton and is originally from Farmington, New Mexico.

    ODU Commitment 0413

    Brian and Dan participate in the Catholic Campus Ministry at ODU, where they initially met members of the Youth Apostles community.  Rick participated in ODU’s RCIA program this past year and entered the Church at Easter.


    Fr. Jack Peterson, YA officiated at the Mass and commitments.  He was joined by several other men from Northern Virginia who drove down for the evening.  The liturgy was attended by family and friends of the three men, including the staff of the ODU Catholic Campus Ministry and nearly a dozen students from the school.  Fr. Mike Kuhn, YA, chaplain at ODU concelebrated the Mass with Fr. Jack.  Frs. Jack and Mike were also joined by Fr. Dan Beeman, pastor at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, who also concelebrated at the liturgy.


    This is the third commitment liturgy for the Norfolk community since the Youth Apostles arrived in June 2011.  Seven men have now made candidate commitments to Youth Apostles in Norfolk, and the total number of men involved in the community in Norfolk has grown to 13.

    Inspiring College Men to Lives of Virtue

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    On a beautiful Spring evening, a group of twenty students from OldDominionUniversity gathered at the Catholic Campus Ministry (CCM) House for the second annual Men’s Retreat. The theme of the night was based on what FOCUS (The Fellowship of Catholic University Students) has named the “Big 3” issues that college students deal with on a regular basis: sobriety, chastity and excellence.

                 After playing a rousing game of capture the flag and eating seven boxes of pizza, the students listened to talks on each of the three issues and broke into small groups to share with one another their trials and triumphs regarding each one.

    • Andrew DeCelle gave the talk on sobriety, reminding students that it’s not only a matter of following the law and only drinking in moderation, but is virtue requiring one to keep their whole state of mind and body healthy so that we may love ourselves and one another as Christ has called us to.
    • Andrew Waring spoke on chastity, using the imagery of C.S. Lewis’ “The Great Divorce” to illustrate that our sexuality is a beautiful gift when we use it for God’s purposes rather than our own.
    • Kevin Loker, a recent graduate of GMU where he served on the CCM Student Ministry Team, traveled down from Northern Virginia to speak on excellence. His talk concentrated on our need to do everything “For the greater glory of God” (Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam) rather than for ourselves.

                 Following the final talk, Father Mike Kuhn exposed the Blessed Sacrament for an hour of Adoration and was available to hear Confessions. The night was an overall success, as it facilitated fellowship, deep sharing among the students and challenged everyone in attendance to strive to be men of virtue, seeking forgiveness whenever necessary.

    –Andrew DeCelle

    You Are Not Alone

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    On February 1st and 2nd close to four hundred students from across the state of Virginia gathered in Charlottesville for the 2nd annual Virginia Catholic Campus Ministry Summit.  This weekend was headlined by the Ike Ndolo Band and Paul George.  Bishop Francis Xavier DiLorenzo was present, celebrated Mass and heard the confessions of many college students.  Also in attendance though were 9 Youth Apostles, and a couple of Youth Apostle wives as well.  The message that the Bishop left those gathered with was “You are not alone”.  Twice he mentioned this in regards to the challenges of living out a life of faith, a life of integrity.  What a comfort that as he preached to our students, the Youth Apostles gathered together in ministry could look to each other and know that we are not alone.  Ministering with our brothers is one of the greatest joys and a source of great support for us as ministers.  It was also a great gift to see our brothers in action, as Youth Apostles helped by coordinating the event, hearing Confessions and serving at Mass, and by teaching students about Apologetics and prayer.  The 2013 Summit was a great event and students are continually approaching our staff and sharing how it has helped them to grow in their faith and to learn more about how to live out that faith as a college student.  What a blessing to be able to serve the youth of Virginia, and what a blessing to be able to do it with brothers.

    –Andrew Waring

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