Questions of faith, with a cherry on top

Questions of faith, with a cherry on top
Sister Karen McConnell, FMIHM, and Sister Cherry Butaslac, SOM, take questions from youth at Theology on Ice on July 13 at Our Lady of Sorrows Parish in Linwood. Photo by Alan M. Dumoff

Sister Karen McConnell, FMIHM, and Sister Cherry Butaslac, SOM, take questions from youth at Theology on Ice on July 13 at Our Lady of Sorrows Parish in Linwood.
Photo by Alan M. Dumoff

LINWOOD — They came here for theology. The homemade ice cream wasn’t bad, either.

The 20 youth from Cape May and Atlantic County parishes converged at Our Lady of Sorrows’ parish hall here on July 13 to pose questions on the Catholic faith to a panel of seminarians, priests and religious sisters. The occasion was the annual Theology on Ice program, organized by Camden Diocesan parish youth leaders.

Moderated by Jeff Young, youth minister at St. Gianna Beretta Molla, the discussion included the young church curious about vocations (“Say yes to God, and pray to him everyday to help us make the right decisions,” answered Father Michael Romano, diocesan Director of Vocations); suffering (“Even in the face of it, you can see wonders,” from Sr. Cherry Butaslac, SOM); and keeping the faith in a secular world (“Work on your relationship with God, follow his teachings, and never give up, keep persevering, because he doesn’t give up on you,” said seminarian Anthony Infanti).

Patrick Newman, 13, from Saint Gianna Beretta Molla youth group, engaged in both the ice cream and questions.

“I have vanilla on the bottom, then chocolate, then peanut butter brittle,” he said, holding a cup and spoon, adding that he wanted to know how changing technology was affecting the Catholic Church.

“Many things involved with the internet and technology are good, but there is a lot of junk too,” answered Father Edward Namiotka, pastor of Saint Joseph in Somers Point, who blogs frequently.

“If one uses technology for good, it can be very beneficial,” he said.

Tom Salerno, youth minister at Our Lady of Sorrows, made all of the evening’s ice cream by himself. However the youth were most drawn, by the guests or cool treat, he understands what’s most important.

“The youth got to hear from a nice selection of individuals, who talked from the heart about things the youth were interested in. I’m happy about the panel we had,” he said.

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