Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington
Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane
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Quo Vadis Days 2013 explores ‘The Door of Faith’
by Curtis Seidel, for the Inland Register
(From the August 15, 2013 edition of the Inland Register)
Bishop Cupich celebrated Mass and later gave a talk during Quo Vadis Days 2013.
For six years now, Quo Vadis Days, a summer vocations camp/retreat for boys, helps high school boys grow through prayer, fellowship and guest testimonies on living the Christian life. This year’s theme for Quo Vadis Days – quo vadis is Latin for “where are you going?” – was “The Door of Faith,” inspired by Pope Benedict’s Year of Faith.
At its heart, faith is not some weighty intellectual assent, nor is it the rote recitation of the Creed on Sunday. Faith, rather, is about relationship – a relationship with Jesus Christ and, in this relationship with Christ, a relationship with the Church.
Forty-four high school boys from throughout Eastern Washington and Northern Idaho spent four days in Ross Point, Idaho, for this seventh annual Quo Vadis Days, Monday-Thursday, June 17-20.
Bishop Cupich opened the camp with Mass and later that evening shared a little about his own life, growing up, and entering seminary. He also shared his process of discernment.
Talks like Bishop Cupich’s continued throughout the week, highlighting various aspects of living the Christian life.
Father Daniel Barnett (left) – pastor of the parishes in Colville, Kettle Falls, Northport, Republic, and Curlew – spoke about how true freedom is not merely the ability to choose different things, a freedom from compulsion; rather, true freedom was a gift from God that allows human beings to choose the good, to consciously participate in the very life of God.
Father Kevin Oiland, pastor of the parishes in Connell and Eltopia and their mission in Basin City, and Kevin Cary, a husband and father of three, encouraged the boys to dedicate their lives fully to whatever God is calling them to do. The world needs dedicated husbands just as much as it needs good priests, they said.
Another large part of Quo Vadis Days an opportunity for young men to interact with priests and seminarians in a less formal environment. Activities such as ultimate Frisbee, swimming, board games and other social gatherings gave them an opportunity to see the more human side of priests and seminarians. In building friendships with other young men of faith, they were better able to see that it was good and normal to live Christian lives.
Prayer ultimately held together all of the activities, guest speakers and games. A different priest celebrated Mass each day, and the newly ordained Deacon Brian Sattler led everybody in the Liturgy of the Hours, the “prayer of the Church” recited by clergy and Religious every day throughout the world. The young men also spent time in Adoration of the Eucharist; priests were available for the sacrament of confession.
As this year’s camp coordinator, I was impressed by the dedication of these boys to seek God’s will.
Next year’s Quo Vadis Days will take place June 16-19, and it is open to any high school boy interested in discerning God’s will for his life. Quo Vadis Days exists to help these young men discover that when we discern God’s will with confidence and actively live it out, we will find the fullest measure of happiness that this life can afford. Whether we live our vocations as priests, Brothers, single, or husbands and fathers, God desires our ultimate happiness. In providing time and space for discernment Quo Vadis Days helps these young men live fuller lives.
Quo Vadis Days would not be possible without the huge amount of support that it has received from individuals and groups throughout the diocese. As such, thank you to all who have supported Quo Vadis over the years.
(Seidel is a seminarian studying for the Diocese of Spokane. Photos were by another Spokane Diocese seminarian, Kyle Ratuiste.)
Msgr. Kevin Codd, the Spokane Diocese’s Director of Vocations, preaches.
Father Tyler Smedley, Msgr. Robert Pearson, and Father Steve Dublinski shared their insights.
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