In a fast paced, quickly changing and increasingly relativistic world the young people of today long for the truth, beauty and goodness. Through his holy Catholic Church Jesus Christ has lavished all the graces we need to be happy and fulfilled both in this life and the next. For this reason, Ignite Your Torch joyfully embraces all the teachings of the Catholic Church. Through gifted speakers, amazing workshops and engaging small group discussions these teachings go from the head to the heart in a way that transforms lives.
In addition to her teachings, Catholic Church has a spiritual goldmine of Sacred Music, Sacred Art and devotions that many young people today have never experienced. Through beautiful liturgies and a variety of prayerful devotions the teens are invited to join in the Communion of Saints and tap into their timeless spiritual power. Teens have often witnessed that they leave the Conference with a much deeper connection to the traditions through which our apostolic faith has been handed down to us.
“I truly feel on fire and am ready to spread the
GOOD NEWS that is the Catholic Church.”
One of the unique hallmarks of the Ignite Your Torch Conference is its pro-life emphasis. More so than ever, the Church’s teachings on marital love and the sanctity of all human life is being challenged by the culture of death. For this reason, Ignite Your Torch seeks to empower and equip our teens to build up the culture of life in practical ways using the beautiful and morally solid teachings of the Catholic Church. Experiences such as an abortion testimony and praying the rosary at an abortion clinic often bring the reality of abortion to teens' attention for the first time and have even led to pro-life conversions.
Building a Culture of Life
The morning begins with the trip to an abortion clinic followed by a Mass for Life. Throughout the rest of the day talks and workshops offered on pro-life day equip teens to explain and defend the pro-life teaching of the Church as well as her teachings on chastity and marriage.
"I've never been so PROUD to be PRO-LIFE."
Ignite Your Torch is first and foremost centered on the Holy Eucharist as the Source and Summit of the Christian life. From reverent celebrations of Holy Mass to Eucharistic Adoration, the Conference seeks to help teens experience the Real Presence of our Lord in a transformative way.
For many teens the boundless love of Christ is revealed to them for the very first time in Eucharistic Adoration. For others, these times of adoration, worship and silence have strengthened and deepened their love for our Eucharistic Lord.
Aware that God is the giver of all graces, the religious and volunteers maintain perpetual Eucharistic Adoration throughout the Conference in a quiet chapel on campus.
“I had never experienced the
PRESENCE OF GOD
and I found it amazing
Marian to the Core
The Conference is devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary, the model and means to holiness for every Christian. The opening night of the Conference includes a candlelit Rosary procession and throughout the Conference, teens have opportunities to learn and reflect more deeply on the role of the Blessed Virgin Mary and invite her into their daily lives.
Relevant to You
Teens come to Ignite Your Torch from many different backgrounds, interests and levels of catechesis. Workshops provide an opportunity for teens to choose areas of interest, get specific answers to their questions and interact more closely with the priests, religious and lay people who are speaking.
To get a taste of the topics, here are topics offered in the past:
- The Hunger Games and the Culture of Life
- From Drugs and Gangs to Seminary: A Pro-life Choice
- The Abortion-Contraception Connection
- Creation and Evolution - What's the Purpose of it All?
- The Rosary: Armed and Ready for Battle
Friendly and Practical
Like World Youth Day, Ignite Your Torch seeks to inspire young people by showing them that they are not alone in their Catholic faith. Yet in such a big crowd it is easy to only stick with friends and never expand your experience of the riches of the fellowship of the faithful. That is why Ignite Your Torch seeks to balance the “big” feeling with the goal of the “fellowship of the faithful” both by a more moderate size (registration is limited to 225 for 2013) and by providing a small group experience.
Small groups also provide a chance for the teens to get to know the priests, brothers and sisters who lead them. In addition to this, it gives teens a chance to flesh out talks they hear and practically apply the teaching to their everyday lives.
“You DON'T FEEL ALONE… you feel like you are a part of something BIG.”
While the four days of Ignite Your Torch provide many spiritual and intellectual opportunities it is also a lot of…just plain fun! Times for recreation and games are abundant and provide a great opportunity to speak informally to the priests, brothers and sisters. Recreation times vary from activities that everyone participates in to times when teens can choose an activity. Past activities have included everything from line dancing to basketball to a concert with the band.