The Pope John Paul II Award
The Pope John Paul II Award encourages you to go beyond your comfort zone on a journey of self-discovery. It challenges you to give of your time, your talents, your intellect, and your social skills for the well-being of others and for the Glory of God.”
Message from the Bishop of Down & Connor
On behalf of the Diocese of Down and Connor, Living Youth carries out this mission by constantly affirming the giftedness of our young people. It fosters this affirmation by engaging them in creative roles within our parishes, youth centres and schools.
I welcome the introduction of the Pope John Paul II Award by Living Youth into the Diocese of Down and Connor. I pray that this Award will inspire young people to get involved in their local parishes, both for their own benefit and for the benefit of the wider parish community.
The Pope John Paul II Award gives concrete expression to the vision at the heart of the Framework Document for Youth Ministry in Ireland, ‘Called Together - Making a Difference.’
The talents, skills and gifts of young people can make a real difference to their peers. We see the impact they have on the lives of the wider community through many acts of selfless service. They are called to play a full and active part in our parish communities. The joy and vitality that they bring to this task makes a difference. The Pope John Paul II Award will hopefully channel their youthful enthusiasm. Their involvement and work will be an eloquent witness to faith in Jesus Christ for all of us in our Diocese as we share the common task of building God’s kingdom.
We are called together - through our faith in Jesus Christ.
Inspired by our faith in Christ, let us be sure of this: together we will make a difference!
Bishop of Down and Connor
The Award in the Diocese of Down & Connor
There are 4 Awards - Gold, Silver, Bronze & Papal Cross
Each Award is completed over a 16 month period beginning at the start of the academic year.
Awards are earned by taking part in parish and social activities – 1 hour per week over 8, 14, 20 or 26 weeks.
Those that have completed the Gold Award have a further option of completing the Papal Cross Award.
Diocese of Down & Connor Award Top-Up Suggestions
Top-Ups will go towards the total number of hours an individual has to complete.
Gold: 6 hours
Silver: 4.5 hours
Bronze: 3 hours
Each year, many people from the Diocese of Down and Connor travel to Lourdes at Easter and during the summer, to care for people with disabilities. These people need special care while in Lourdes and volunteers are always needed to give them that care. It may be pushing their wheelchair or just accompanying them. Working in Lourdes with the diocesan groups can be part of this Award.
Young people also take part in pilgrimages to places such as Taizé, Clonmacnoise and Santiago de Compostela. These pilgrimages can also be considered as Award Top-Ups.
Home & Overseas Service Projects
Young people may engage in service projects lasting four days or more at home or abroad, such as summer schemes - SERVE, Habitat for Humanity or working in orphanages in Romania. These service projects may be considered as Award Top-Ups.
There may be other activities that you are involved in that are not included here but may be relevant, if so, please contact the Pope John Paul II Award Committee for approval.
The Award handbook explains in detail how the Award is run and who is responsible for running the Award in your diocese.