Catholic Renewal Weekend Oct. 11-13

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The Diocese of Camden’s Catholic Renewal Weekend, a time to find refreshment and strength for the spiritual journey among fellow believers and a chance to grow closer to God through the intercession of the Holy Spirit and the Blessed Virgin Mary, will take place Oct. 11-13 at the Wildwood Convention Center, 4501 Boardwalk Avenue, Wildwood.

A man prays during the Mass of consecration.

“The weekend is a great opportunity to praise God, listen to the promptings of the Holy Spirit, listen to wonderful speakers, and enhance one’s faith,” said Father Rene Canales, Bishop’s Delegate for the Catholic Renewal and master of ceremonies for the weekend.

“These three days are prayerful, reflective and packed with spiritual outpouring,” he added.

Worshippers hold hands in prayer during the opening Mass of consecration to Jesus through Mary on Sept. 11 at Saint Jude Church, Our Lady of Hope Parish, Blackwood. The Mass was celebrated in preparation for the Catholic Renewal Weekend in Wildwood Oct. 11-13. Photos by Alan M. Dumoff

The theme for this year’s weekend event is taken from the Book of Revelation: “Whoever has ears ought to hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”

Speakers for youth, young adults, and adults will help all in attendance be empowered by the Holy Spirit, as participants discover their gifts and, at the end of the weekend, go forth in their own communities to renew the church of South Jersey.

“Every time I’ve walked away from this, I’ve felt renewed, very peaceful in my faith, very close with God, and I want that for everyone,” said Rebekah Hardy, Catholic Campus Minister at Glassboro’s Rowan University.

She participated in past weekends as a youth, young adult and facilitator, and this year she will be a speaker for the adult track of the program.

Calling the renewal “life-changing,” she urged all to attend “if you want a kick-start for (your spiritual life), this is the place to go.”

In addition to Hardy, other speakers include Father Ariel Hernandez, pastor of Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament Parish in Newfield, and Father James Blount, a priest of the Society of Our Lady of the Trinity — Georgia Mission.

Norberto Cruz, Hispanic youth minister at Saint Jude Church (Our Lady of Hope Parish) in Blackwood, will lead the Junior Youth Track. Bilingual worship leader and recording artist Ricky Vazquez, will lead all in spirited song during the three days.

In preparation for the weekend, Father Canales celebrated an opening Mass of consecration to Jesus through Mary on Sept. 11 at Saint Jude Church. The Catholic Renewal Weekend in Wildwood will conclude with a Mass of consecration.

For more information on the weekend schedule, speakers, and pricing (there are different options for adults, families, youth, high schoolers, and middle schoolers), visit www.camdendiocesecatholicrenewal.org