The 18th Annual Dominican High Schools Preaching Conference took place June 24-29, 2016 at Siena Heights University in Adrian, Michigan. Attending the conference from Amityville were two students from St. John the Baptist High School as well as Sister Beth McGarvey, OP, and Sister Gina Fleming, OP. The event hosted 87 students and 25 mentors from 23 Dominican high schools, including two students and a mentor from Sydney, Australia. Participants were introduced to different extensions of the Dominican Family, meeting representatives of the Dominican Sisters, Friars, Associates, Laity, College Preachers, Dominican Young Adults USA, and Dominican Volunteers USA.
Workshop topics included “Human Trafficking,” “Migration of Peoples,” “The Refugees Experience,” “Isolated Elderly: the Forgotten People” and “The United Nations.” It was wonderful to see these young people talking about the things they are passionate about. At “Preaching through the Creative Arts” sessions, students had the opportunity to explore mandalas, liturgical preaching, liturgical movement, rosary making, watercolor, Moravian Stars, and T’ai Chi Chih. Sister Barbara Schwarz, OP was the keynote for the day.
The conference ended with a closing liturgy in which each school presented its action plan, a plan decided upon by the students as a vehicle for bringing what they learned at the conference back to their school communities. It was a great week and a wonderful experience for all!