By Dan Russo
INDIANAPOLIS — The Archdiocese of Dubuque sent the largest delegation in the history of the National Catholic Youth Conference to this year’s events Nov. 19-21 at Lucas Oil Stadium and Convention Center in Indianapolis, Indiana.
“Our final count was 1,599 (people),” said Keven Feyen, director of adolescent faith formation for the archdiocese. “That’s 150 more than in 2013.”
About 24,000 high school aged youth and their chaperones attended the conference, which had the theme of “Here I am Lord.” Music, dance and group prayer experiences — including the closing Mass — took place in the main stadium, while smaller break out sessions and other activities happened around the convention center. One of the highlights of the general sessions was eucharistic adoration, which turned out to be an emotional experience for many.
“This was the first year NCYC has had eucharistic adoration as part of our general sessions,” said Feyen. “People prayed quietly together. Everybody who experienced this said they couldn’t believe the silence, outside of the sound of some people sobbing. Twenty-four thousand young people totally committed to this.”
Feyen has not received the surveys rating participants’ experiences yet, but expects the adoration moments to be one of the major highlights, along with the Mass. He expressed gratitude to the youth of the arcdiocese who went for their good behavior and for the adult chaperones.
“One out of every 14 people (at NCYC) was from the Archdiocese of Dubuque,” he said. “We’re just really proud of these kids.”
To see more photos from this year’s NCYC, search for @1700strong, #dbqarchncyc and #biggestNCYCGroupEver on Twitter and other social media platforms.
This story is provided courtesy of The Witness, the official publication of the Archdiocese of Dubuque.