Fun and faith at centre of HOPE Camp

Young people pictured with Bishop of Derry Donal McKeown at St Eugene's Cathedral.
Young people pictured with Bishop of Derry Donal McKeown at St Eugene's Cathedral.

Over 140 local children have taken part in the annual HOPE camp in St Cecilia’s College run by the Parish of Templemore.

Children getting involved in arts and crafts during the camp.

Children getting involved in arts and crafts during the camp.

The camp commenced with an Opening Mass in St Columba’s Church celebrated by Fr Brendan Collins.

During this opening event, the children received their special HOPE (Help Our Parish Evolve) Camp T-shirts and information on the week’s activities.

The children took part in various activities throughout the week, and the final day of the camp included a family fun day and barbecue.

The camp closed with Bishop of Derry, Dr. Donal McKeown celebrating Mass in St Eugene’s Cathedral.

Some of the young people who took part in the Hope Camp wearing their special T-shirts.

Some of the young people who took part in the Hope Camp wearing their special T-shirts.

Emmet Thompson, Pastoral Youth Ministry Leader for the Parish of Templemore and camp co-ordinator, commented: “There was a strong faith element in the camp, whereby children learned about the different sacraments.”

Hope Summer Camp is a voluntary organisation staffed by teachers, students and experienced volunteers.

The annual event offers a wide range of activities including cupcake decorating, dodgeball, gymnastics, Laser tag, clay animation, football tournament, arts and crafts workshops, team games and various other activities.

Among the highlights from the programme of activities was a soccer World Cup event.

Children gathered at St Eugene's Cathedral for the prayer service.

Children gathered at St Eugene's Cathedral for the prayer service.

The organisers also took the children to Brunswick Moviebowl to catch a film.

Parents joined their children for the closing ceremony and also took part in the family carnival in St. Cecilia’s College Sports fields at Fanad Drive.

The Summer Camp is part of a wide range of activities undertaken by young people in the Derry Diocese throughout the year. A total of 60 young people recently travelled to Poland to join 1.6m youths from across the world to mark World Youth Day.

For more information on HOPE Summer Camp, find them on Facebook or at St Eugene’s Cathedral, Derry Diocese and Long Tower.

Local children making full use of St Cecilia's PE facilities during the HOPE Camp.

Local children making full use of St Cecilia's PE facilities during the HOPE Camp.

Children getting involved in arts and crafts during the camp.

Children getting involved in arts and crafts during the camp.