United Dutchess Youth Group


Their recent trip with Our Lady of Lourdes High School to Lourdes, France, sparked thoughts of starting a new youth group. Mary said, “For a long time I wanted to restart the youth group at my parish. While my parents and I were on a pilgrimage to Lourdes, France, we began speaking about ways to revive the group. With the help of Father Connolly, my parents, and Jack’s parents, we decided to start the United Dutchess Youth Group.”

To market the youth group, Father Connolly and Father Erik Lenhart, OFM, Cap, helped design a logo and local parishes were sent a flyer to add to their bulletins. Father Connolly also presented it at his Deanery meeting.

The newly created United Dutchess Youth Group held its first Mass at St. Stanislaus on Saturday, October 14th, and it was a huge success.

The Mass was served by youth group members, and Mr. Daniel Walker graciously provided the music. After Mass, the group enjoyed pizza, games, a lot of conversations, and laughs around the fire pit. The night concluded with Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, worship music, and Benediction.

Attendees included 20-25 OLL students and another 30 young people came from other area parishes.

The United Dutchess Youth Group is open to any teen in 7th to 12th grade. To join or for more information, Mary and Jack can be reached by emailing uniteddutchessyouthgroup@gmail.com

The next event will take place on Saturday, December 2nd at St. Stanislaus Church. Mass will be at 5:30 p.m.followed by cookies and hot chocolate at the Pleasant Valley Festival of Lights.

Jack Rickard stated, “Mary and I hope that the group grows over time, that it continues to be a great religious experience, and, in addition, provides fun for others our age, even after we are away at college.”