The webinar series is in preparation for an in-person Young Adult Ministry Symposium in Washington, DC, now rescheduled for Aug. 12-15 following its postponement last August due to the coronavirus pandemic. It gives participants an opportunity to reflect and dialogue on how the Archdiocese can better serve the needs of young adults in the U.S. Military around the globe. The upcoming Symposium comes in response to Pope Francis’s Apostolic Exhortation Christus Vivit, wherein the Holy Father calls on the Church to consider refreshing the ways she can accompany young people. The three time options make each webinar conveniently accessible to those stationed in multiple time zones. All three sessions will feature the same keynote presentation, but to encourage candid exchange of views, the live discussion segment will be unique to each session and not repeated in recorded form.
Ms. Casey Lee, AMS Associate Director for Young Adult Ministry, said the webinars were developed and are being held the last Tuesday and Thursday of each month after the coronavirus pandemic forced postponement of the original Symposium dates last year. “The webinar series began last fall,” she explained, “when the Symposium was postponed due to the pandemic. This series sets the framework for the Symposium and enables many military young adults to participate who otherwise would not be able to attend an in-person gathering due to deployment location or an overseas assignment. The topics have covered challenges and opportunities in the military environment and evangelization. I am excited to dive deeper into the Christian life with the next topic which will explore discipleship.”
Ms. Lee said the ongoing webinars and the rescheduled Symposium serve a need among young adult Catholics in the military—one that she has encountered in her first-hand interactions with many. “I have had the opportunity to meet many military young adults who hunger to grow in their faith and also desire to invite their Catholic peers into the same authentic friendship with Christ–answering God’s call to be agents in the mission of the Church as outlined in the Pope Francis’ 2019 Apostolic Exhortation on Young People: Christus Vivit.”