Light of Christ dispels darkness for young adults at conference

By: By Jennifer Willems

PHOTO: A eucharistic procession by torchlight on May 31 at the Saint John Summer Conference in rural Princeville makes a stop for prayer. The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems

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PRINCEVILLE — Young adults attending the 2014 Saint John Summer Conference heard several talks about darkness and light in the life of faith and last Saturday night they demonstrated how Christ, the Light of the World, dispels the darkness during a eucharistic procession by candlelight through the grounds of the Community of St. John.

There was a short period of eucharistic adoration in the chapel of the Contemplative Sisters of St. John before the group walked past the priory of the Brothers of St. John and through the woods until they were in a clearing near the chapel and house of formation of the Apostolic Sisters of St. John.

Father Nathan Cromly, CSJ, prior of the community’s St. John Priory in Laredo, Texas, carried the monstrance and continued the series of reflections he had offered during the conference when the procession stopped for prayer in three places.

When the procession ended, he placed the monstrance on a raised platform that was covered with candles and invited the young adults to remain for an hour of adoration. The sacrament of reconciliation was also available.

Eventually the Blessed Sacrament was moved to the barn for all-night adoration.

The weekend conference included an ecumenical panel with a Greek Orthodox priest and Baptist minister, Stations of the Cross through the streets of downtown Peoria, and a talk by Sister Irene Baquiran of the Immaculate Mary Queen of Heaven Missionaries, who works with victims of human trafficking in the Philippines.

The annual event drew about 100 young adults from as far away as Alaska and Florida, with the largest contingent, 26, coming from Texas. People also traveled to Princeville from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Missouri, Kansas, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Wisconsin and Oregon, as well as Illinois.

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