Page 5, 29th May 1942

29th May 1942
Page 5
Page 5, 29th May 1942 — PRESTON HELD YOUTH RALLY

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Locations: Lancaster, Newport


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On Whit-Sunday the Catholics of Preston held a grand Rally of Youth from 14 to II years of age, under the direction of Fr. H. Parker, head of Preston Catholic Youth Organisations and parish priest of St. Joseph's. 1,000 boys and girls attended High Mass at II a.m., which was sung in the presence of the Bishop of Lancaster, Dr. T. E. Flynn, who walked in procession with Mgr. G. Knuckey, V.G., and Canon L. Prescott, V.F., to the church of St. Joseph's through the crowds assembled outside to welcome him.

Mgr. Knuckey, who preached, described in stirring words how the boy David's victory over Goliath prompted King Saul to ask the young champion of God; of what family art thou? The Monsignor reminded his young audience that they were the aristocracy of God their Father with Christ their Brother, while Mary, the Mother of Our Lord, was their Mother too. By baptism they were labelled the sons of God, the greatest dignity given to man.

Later, at 3 p.m., the boys 'and girls reassembled in the grounds of Larkhill Convent where His Lordship was received with three hearty cheers from well over 1,200 young voices. After inspecting units of the Sea Cadets, Army Cadets and Air Training Corps, His Lordship welcomed each and all to this first Youth Rally to be held in Preston.

"/ am proud of you Preston youth," he told then, " proud to be with you to-day, proud and grateful to God to feel that my words on this matter, spoken some months ago as your Bishop. have met with such a response."

His Lordship showed how the fine record of Catholics and Preston Catholic lads in the war proved the strong loyalty and true patriotism of the Catholic body. He impressed on all of them that this was an earnest beginning by united youth to win the world for Christ and to the clear and practical ideals taught by Christ by word and still more by deed.

BOYS SHOULD RESPECT GIRLS The chairman of the Town Youth Council, Mr. Harry Melling, then spoke on the need for sacrifice in the service of their country especially through loyalty to their organisations. He was followed later by Marie Meagher, vicechairman of the Youth Council, who stressed the importance of family life and training for the married state.

" Boys must learn to respect girls, who must in turn earn that respect by their Christian modesty," he said. " Youth is being trained for all the professions in life except the most important, that of bringing up a Christian family."

The main address of the afternoon was given by Mgr. P.. L. Smith, of the Venerable English College, who laid down the true lines of youth action and conduct. Somewhat humorously he remarked they all had to face the fact that they would " grow Old," whether they liked it or not. Yet this fact should remind them constantly to enjoy their youth, to use it to the best possible advantage. That could only be in the cause of God, for their neighbour, for God's sake, and for themselves, since youth was God's precious gift to each. Mgr. Smith stressed the special qualities of youth, chiefly enthusiasm and generosity, but showed how even these splendid qualities could do incalculable harm, if they were not wisely led.

The programme included a variety in displays of boxing, gymnastics, recitals and dancing, performed by members of parish boys' and girls' clubs, the Young Christian Workers and the Girls' Train ing Corps. Musical selections were tastefully rendered by the band of St. Vincent's Boys' Home. There followed hymns and Benediction, and finally tea, provided by the Preston Catenian Association, members of which acted as stewards for the gathering.

Fr. John Colbert, Inst.Ch., Rector of St. Mary's, Newport, who has been undergoing treatment at Woctloston House Infirmary, Newport, is now making steady progress, and is taking a short holiday to convalesce.

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