Eucharistic Congress included
outreach to children, youth

Special activities sponsored by the diocesan Office of Christian Formation and the Office for Evangelization provided children and youth a unique opportunity to participate in the Diocese of Richmond’s bicentennial celebration.

The Office of Christian Formation held Eucharistic Congress picture and essay contests to help children in kindergarten through 5th grade reflect on the bicentennial theme: “Shine like stars in the world, as you hold fast to the word of life” (Phil 2:15-16).

In grades K-2, children illustrated the prompt: “My Community Shines like Stars.” In grades 3-5, children wrote an essay to answer the following: “Tell us your story of ‘Shining Like Stars’… An experience of bringing happiness, joy and love to your church community and Diocese of Richmond.”

After reviewing over 100 entries representing five of diocesan Catholic schools and a wide range of parishes, one winner was selected from each participating grade.

The winners are:

Kindergarten: Azara Mumford, St. Joseph School, Petersburg

1st grade: Declan Maxwell, Portsmouth Catholic School, Portsmouth

2nd grade: Charlotte Charbonneau, St. Matthew Church and School, Virginia Beach

3rd grade: Brenna McClure, Portsmouth Catholic School, Portsmouth

4th grade: Joseph Waring, St Bridget Parish, Richmond

5th grade: Rommel Castillo, St. Pius X Catholic School, Norfolk

In addition to the picture and essay contests, the Office of Christian Formation also sponsored a “Project with a Purpose” in which school students created cards for residents of adult care facilities across the diocese.

The Office for Evangelization solicited entries to its Eucharist Art Festival for students in grades 6-12 from Nov. 7-14.

The Eucharistic Art Festival was created as a reflection-style contest in which youth could submit entries in a variety of media including visual art, film, dance, photography and poetry to reflect on “What the Eucharistic Congress means to me.”

Sixth grader Trevor Chapman, a parishioner of St. Mary Star of the Sea Church, Fort Monroe, was announced as the winner.

Chapman submitted a pencil drawing of his family gathering together to glorify the Eucharist.

In his entry statement, Chapman wrote: “I made this peice (sic) of art of my family to express the gathering love and glorifying of the Eucharist. What the Eucharist means to me is that we gather and glorify the world as we receive and share Jesus Christ with others.”

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