Opening of Youth Village

St Robert’s Parish Morpeth offers it’s

warmest congratulations

to Fr Dermott and everyone at YMT

on the occasion of the opening of

the Diocesan Youth Village.

Fr Jim and myself had a smashing day participating in the Blessing and Opening of the Diocesan Youth Village. It was a day on which the whole diocese can be very proud. Having watched the development of YMT from the beginning some 15 years ago today was a real coming of age and a taking possession of the “promised land”.

I remember the humble origins of YMT in an old clapped out former OAP’s nursing home with leaky sewers at Heddon on the Wall. The place wasn’t fit for human habitation. From there they became nomads,  a travelling people with no fix abode, like the people of Israel wandering in the wilderness.

They stayed for a while at the old bishop’s house at Tynemouth. What a grotty hole that was! Living in rooms that hadn’t been lived in or touched for 40 years or more. From there they came on better times when they came to St Mary’s, Stockton and where I provided an overflow at English Martyrs presbytery. It was a pleasure to have them. Next, a bigger property became available at Blyth and Stockton was really sorry to let them go. The positive influence of YMT on the parishes of Stockton was tremendous and I will be forever grateful for all the help, friendship and support that Fr Dermott and YMT gave to me and my parish while we were together in Stockton. They were happy days!

YMT continued to grow and flourish at Blyth until the Lord decided to show them the promised land at a tiny place called Allensford, in the glorious county palatine of  Durham – the land of St Cuthbert. Indeed, YMT as well as imitating the people of Israel also imitated the haliwerfolc of old who accompanied the incorrupt  body of St Cuthbert on it’s wanderings over many years until they settled at the place that the Lord had chosen for them and there on a peninsula of land around a river they were to build what was to become an image of the new and eternal Jerusalem, a most magnificent Cathedral, the shrine of St Cuthbert and the “best building” in the whole of Europe.

Today, YMT look possession of the promised land and I hope and pray as do all of the parishoners of St Robert’s, that the Lord will bring YMT into a new season of abunance in the “land of milk and honey” and continue to enable them to build among young people that new Jerusalem in which Jesus is worshipped and adored.

The parishoners of St Robert’s are already very grateful for the faith affirmimg influence that YMT have had upon the young people of our parish and we look forward very much to working with YMT in the future.

Fr Lawrence Jones.

Here are some photo’s I took today:

Ant and Dec prepare to “Push The Button”  at the offical Opening.

It’s the same button from the TV series.

Ant, Bishop Ambrose, Bishop Seamus, Fr Dermott and Dec all push the button together.

Ballons and tinsel explode on the crowd.

The Youth Village is open and the journey in faith continues…