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Marist Forum to a group of year 11 students

06/11/2006: Australia

The Marist Forum, realized in Mittagong from 13 to 15 October, gave a group of Year 11 students the opportunity to consider the choices that a variety of guest speakers have made in their lives and how these choices have been lived out. It also challenges them to reflect on their own values and beliefs and where life is heading for them. The chance to meet other like-minded young people from Marist schools around Australia is in itself a significant experience. This sharing of life and faith assists them to depth their own understanding of themselves and what really is important in their lives. The input and sharing, coupled with the prayer experiences, also allows them to consider the place of God in their lives.

Memorable Moments
The chance to share and have fun with other like-minded young people from Marist schools.
Just being at The Hermitage Mittagong and the hospitality of the Brothers community.
Br. Michael Flanagan, Joseph and Jacob Degeling spoke about life at the Berne Education Centre in Lewisham in Sydney and how this is an expression of their vocation.
Guest speaker, Craig Hamilton spoke openly about his personal battles with depression. He spoke about his life and the choices that he has made to maintain balance in his life.
A chance to hear from a Religious Sister, Brother and Priest about their way of life; and from a young married couple.
The reflective and thought provoking prayers in the beautiful chapel at Mittagong.
Five Young Marists spoke about their immersion experiences in Bougainville, the Solomon Islands and Cambodia.
The open forum where we discussed life in the world today and our fears, concerns and hopes.

Comments from Participants
The weekend was a fantastic experience that allowed me to interact with people my age and with the same interests as me. The guest speakers were inspiring. The group discussions were valuable as they allowed us to reach into deeper meanings and more detail; other’s opinions were insightful and allowed us to see another side.
Was good to meet other people our age with a passion for social justice. This weekend has helped me in thinking what we as individuals can do for social justice and what barriers in society need to be broken down for change to be made.

The Marist Forum this weekend was extremely beneficial for me. It helped me to broaden my views on a range of aspects of my life and the lives of those around me.

The things I have learnt this weekend, have helped me as a person. It will help me in my future choices having heard about choices other people make. It has also helped me to realise that I need to be my own person even if it goes against the crowd.

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