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Diocese of Biloxi Youth Conference 2024

May 29, 2024

Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry

Each year the Diocese of Biloxi hosts a Youth Conference for all the teens within the Diocese. This year it was held on Friday, March 8th, 2024, through Sunday, March 10th, 2024. This year we were back at the Mississippi Gulf Coast Coliseum. This year was our 47th Annual DBYC. The theme this year was “Belong”. Our sessions focused on the theme, included: What does it mean to belong, seen, known, included, belonging in our masculinity and femininity, loved, and belonging in this life. Our guest speaker was Katie Prejean McGrady is from Lake Charles, LA. She is an author, wife, mother, talk show host, and podcaster. Our Spirit Mover Team and high school students helped planned the weekend, which was filled with talks, themed events, and skits.

On Friday, March 8th, we kicked off DBYC for our high students, grades 9-12. There were 430 high school students, their chaperones, and volunteers in attendance. Friday night is always a fun and chaotic night. Each group dresses up with the theme they chose and gets to meet other groups from the Diocese. They have banners and table displays where everyone can see what they have done throughout the year. We also had roll call with Bishop Louis F. Kihneman, one session with Katie McGrady Prejean, and small group time. At the end of the night each group went back to their hotels, parish, or condos to do night prayer, discuss the night, and what stood out to them.

On Saturday, March 9th, we had a full day of skits, prayer, talks, testimonies, information on trips and events throughout the Diocese, lunch, small groups, praise and worship, service planning, Eucharistic Adoration, Confessions, and time to process. Our seminarians came and helped throughout the weekend. They lead prayer, shared their story, and helped with Adoration and Mass. We also had breakout sessions for the girls, boys, and adults. They had icebreakers, speaker share testimony and vision, small groups, and prayer. That night we had Adoration and had over twenty priests, including Bishop Kihneman, come celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

On Sunday, March 10th, the conference concluded with the sharing of information about summer events with testimonies from different teenagers, awards (St. Timothy, Ananias: Companion on the Journey, Bragg Moore, Brenda Sargent, and Ann Rivera: Faith through Service Awards), Mass with Bishop Louis Kihneman, Banner, Display, and T-Shirt Awards, Spirit of Convention, a skit, and closing prayer. We also had the St. Peter the Apostle Saints Praise Team lead us in opening prayer. Congratulations to all our award winners!

On Sunday afternoon we had our Middle School Rally for students grade 6 -8. There were 190 Middle School students and their chaperones in attendance. The speaker for the Middle School rally was Kelly Colangelo from Upstate New York. She was energetic, funny, and engaging for the middle schoolers. The afternoon consisted of roll call, skits, talks, testimonies, prayer, Eucharistic Adoration, and Praise and Worship.

This weekend was such a powerful moment for many of our young people. The Holy Spirit was moving this weekend and truly made an impact in lives. The overall joy, enthusiasm, and excitement everyone had was a true gift and it was contagious throughout everyone there this weekend.

Thank you for all your prayers and support towards our young people in our Diocese. Thank you to all who helped put this event on from the sound crew, media team, speakers, priests, deacons, seminarians, set up team, clean up team, registration team, food team, and band. Most of all, thank you to our youth ministers for encouraging your teens to attend this event and thank you to the teens for opening their hearts and minds this weekend, allowing God to transform them from the inside out.