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A World in Need of More Love and Compassion: The Dominican Friars Youth Interfaith Video Contest.

Updated: Jun 5

On May 24, 2024, The Mary Ward Centre was honored to support and participate in the annual Dominican Friars Youth Interfaith Video contest prize distribution ceremony. This inspiring event celebrated the creativity and passion of high school students (grades 9-12) who explored the theme "This is a time when the world needs more love and compassion than ever."

The ceremony opened with a warm welcome from Kathy Murtha, Retreat Coordinator & Facilitator at The Mary Ward Centre. Kathy's dedication to youth empowerment and social justice set the tone for a morning filled with hope and inspiration.

Following Kathy's introduction, Rev. Hervé Tremblay, O.P., Prior of Aquinas House Community, Toronto, offered a thoughtful reflection and opening prayer. Fr. Hervé's wisdom and scholarship grounded the event in a spirit of interfaith understanding.

We then acknowledged the traditional territories upon which we gathered, led by Fr. Prakash, OP, Director of the Office for Interreligious Dialogue at the Archdiocese of Toronto. This important act of recognition highlighted our interconnectedness and responsibility to the land we share.

The ceremony was further enriched by a special message from Most Rev. Robert Kasun, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Toronto. Bishop Kasun's words emphasized the importance of love and compassion in building a more just and peaceful world, a message that resonated deeply with the students present.

The highlight of the event was the screening of the winning videos. Each video, created by a dedicated team of students, showcased a unique and powerful message about the transformative power of love and compassion. The creativity and thoughtfulness of these young people were truly inspiring.

The Winners:

1st Prize: Leslie Fountain & Team - Father Goetz Catholic S.S, Mississauga (Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board)

2nd Prize: Trinity Nartey & Team - St. Roch Catholic Secondary School, Brampton (Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board)

3rd Prize: Susana Liu & Team - Father Michael McGivney Catholic Academy, Markham (York Catholic District School Board)

Following the video presentations, the audience had the privilege of hearing from Mark Brosens, Senior Manager: Brand, Marketing, and Communications at the York Catholic District School Board. Mr. Brosens, a former journalist with extensive experience in public affairs, offered insightful commentary on the importance of youth voices in shaping a more compassionate world.

The Dominican Friars Youth Interfaith Video Contest was a resounding success. It provided a platform for young people to express their hopes and dreams for a more loving and compassionate future. The Mary Ward Centre is proud to have been a part of this inspiring event, and we look forward to seeing even more impactful videos in next year's contest!

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