There was a massive turn-out for Derry and Raphoe Youth’s annual ‘Confirmation Day’ event at the Diocesan Centre in Londonderry on Saturday.
It was organised by the board of D.R.Y., and facilitated by the Church of Ireland Youth Officer, Simon Henry, assisted by the Youth Officer of Ballyholme Parish in Bangor, Andrew Watson.
More than one hundred young people – from all across the diocese – turned up for the event, creating an immediate logistical problem: there weren’t enough chairs to accommodate everyone. The 90 chairs that had been laid out for the gathering were instead collected and stacked at the side of the council room, and the young people sat on the floor.
Simon and Andrew engaged the teenagers in a range of ‘ice-breaker’ games before leading them in periods of direct teaching, using resources pertinent to our Church of Ireland confirmation preparation.
The chairman of D.R.Y., Rev Peter Ferguson, said he was grateful to the young people and parents who had responded so positively to the Confirmation Day, and to the many parish youth leaders from the diocese and fellow clergy who had turned up to lend a hand.
“This is a glorious day, there’s international rugby union on the television, there are plenty of other things these young people could be doing today,” Rev Ferguson said on Saturday afternoon, “so, I’m delighted – and very thankful – that they’ve taken the time and the trouble to come to our Confirmation Day. Confirmation is an important milestone in these young people's lives, and it’s really encouraging for us to see them recognising its significance.
Rev Ferguson, who is Rector of Derg and Termonamongan, said, “When we relaunched D.R.Y., recently, we chose a phrase from one of my favourite Bible verses, Ephesians 3:20, as our theme – ‘immeasurably more’ – and certainly the encouragement we, as clergy and leaders, have drawn from this event is immeasurably more than we had expected. So, we’re grateful to the Lord for that.”