Groups from across the Diocese comprising of 200 youth & adults, joined 10,000 young people at Wembley Arena for FLAME 2019, the largest gathering of Catholic youth in England and Wales. The theme of the event was #Significance and explored ways in which we can lead a life of purpose. The Congress started with a message from Pope Francis encouraging the Youth of the Church to ‘dream great things’ inspired by Jesus’ example. Jean Vanier the founder of l’Arche explained that as we accept our weaknesses and grow in love, our true value is revealed.
Rap Artist Guvna B and Emma Borquaye the founder of girlgotfaith.com shared about the difficulties they faced growing up, in particular how messages and images on social media can make us feel inadequate. Their faith helped both of them to discover their true potential and how to lead a fulfilling life.
Robert Madu, a Pastor from Dallas Texas explained with passion and humour why comparing our lives to everyone around us is pointless. He finished by saying “In the race of life we should stay in our lane and focus our eyes on Jesus”. This led to a standing ovation from the crowd who were genuinely moved by his words of encouragement.
The young people who attended the Congress were clearly inspired by experiencing this event with thousands of likeminded people. On the coach home they shared what they would take back from FLAME. Jasmine felt that “the people who spoke were so relatable and inspirational”. “The atmosphere of being with everyone in Christ filled our hearts” said Angel. One of the most popular aspects of the day was singing such uplifting songs. Matthew shared how the music “filled everyone with joy”.
Destiny summed up the day up by explaining “you can really feel the presence and love of God around us”.