St. Faustina Kowalska of Poland was only seven-years-old when she felt Christ’s call in the blessed sacrament. At a very young age, she knew she was meant to join a convent. She joined a convent at 20, started receiving miraculous visits from Jesus at 25, and died when she was only 33. She is often considered one of the patron saints of the youth.
Although she worked and prayed while concealed in a convent for most of her life, Jesus once told her to fight like a knight. He said, “Prepare for great battles. Know that you are now on a great stage where all heaven and earth are watching you. Fight like a knight, so that I can reward you. Do not be unduly fearful, because you are not alone.”
This is what we tell our participants at Spirit Alive. Despite being young, God is expecting a lot from them. The battles they will face in our culture today are not for the faint-fainted. St. Paul writes, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.” (Romans 12:2)
But we’re not alone. Jesus once told St. Faustina, “My child, life on earth is a struggle indeed; a great struggle for my kingdom. But fear not, because you are not alone. I am always supporting you, so lean on Me as you struggle, fearing nothing.”
We celebrate the day that St. Faustina entered into God’s loving embrace on October 5th which happens to be the first day of the Spirit Alive Conference. Please join us this year in uniting our prayers to St. Faustina that the hearts of the youth may be transformed to trust more in Jesus’ Divine Mercy.
Already young men and women have been impacted by the conference. Our core group of planners is composed of previous Spirit Alive attendees who have come back as volunteers. They make up our planning group because they have gone through the trials of high school and know what it’s like.
We recently asked our volunteers what Spirit Alive meant to them. One volunteer responded, “Spirit Alive for me became an opportunity to step out of my routine and see how God wanted to work in me. Spending time in His Eucharistic presence, hearing the talks, and experiencing a vibrant community made me come back for more.”
They were also asked what advice they would give to attendees this year. One volunteer offered the following advice: “Allow God to flow and be present in every moment. Enjoy all of it. Soak up every second of this time because it is precious and there is so much learning and growing to be done now and in the coming years. You’re just getting started. Every moment, good or bad, is truly a gift from God where we get to learn and grow and be better. Accept the gift, accept this time, embrace it, and thank God for everything.”
We want each one of the young people attending Spirit Alive this year to have a similarly positive experience. Please join us this year in a novena to St. Faustina, who from a very young age was receptive to the gift of God’s grace and continued to listen to His call for her entire life. Beginning on September 27, we ask that attendees, volunteers, parents, and grandparents join us in a novena to St. Faustina to ask her intercession for the conference.
We will pray that the event is run smoothly, the speakers allow the Holy Spirit to speak through them, but mostly that the hearts of the young people are changed into soldiers on fire for God.
The novena will begin today and end on St. Faustina’s feast day, which is the first day of the conference. Let us remember her words: “A soul arms itself by prayer for all kinds of combat. In whatever state the soul may be, it ought to pray… There is no soul which is not bound to pray, for every single grace comes to the soul through prayer.”