Hello: I’m Nolan Conrad, and I’m excited to say that I am St. Michael’s new Youth Minister!
I’m 26, and I moved to Calgary last Summer from Sydney, Nova Scotia. Youth Ministry has been a passion of mine for the majority of my adult life, which stemmed from a powerful encounter with our Lord back when I was 15 years old. Since then, I’ve been dedicated to evangelization and forming myself as a young Catholic man. Working in both missionary and diocesan settings, I’ve had lots of experience in the Church, and I hope that I can bring that experience and put it to good use here. I can say confidently that choosing Christ in my life has been the most significant decision I’ve ever made. This daily decision has led me in service to you — the youth and families of this Catholic community.
My vision for the youth of St. Michael’s is comprehensive and holistic. I hope that, with help from the community, we can offer a faith experience that doesn’t leave one stranded but provides to all people, regardless of their interests or situation. I envision a youth ministry that leads to a face to face experience with our Lord — a realization that they are known and loved, and that that experience fosters within them a missionary heart.
My vision is to see youth not as a side ministry or a separate entity of our parish community, but as an integrated and valuable demographic that provides their gifts, skills, and personality to the richness of parish life, as well as energy and perspective to all of our ministries.
In the document “You Give Them Something to Eat” published by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), there is a quote that summarizes this vision correctly, and draws its inspiration from Luke 9:12-17, where we find the familiar story of how Jesus fed five thousand people with five loaves of bread and two fish.
The document states, “Today, the Church throughout Canada must make a new and meaningful commitment to our young. They are not the Church of the Future, as is often claimed; they are the Young Church of Today. They stand at our door and our side, hungry and seeking nourishment. To us, as to his disciples two thousand years ago, Jesus says, ‘You give them something to eat.'”
I look forward to serving you and the youth of this parish community, and I am blessed to have such an opportunity with a vibrant, Christ-centered parish. Be assured of my prayers. God bless!