By Richard Meek

The Catholic Commentator

As a young adult, even from his unique perspective as an ordained priest, Father Brad Doyle understands the void his age group often faces within the church.

He said young people often get involved in high school, and once they are married they get involved in the church through faith formation or through the schools in which their children attend. But in the interim, young adults, “kind of disappear.”

So it was with great enthusiasm Father Doyle, parochial vicar at St. Margaret Queen of Scotland Church in Albany, embraced the suggestion of pastor Father Jamin David to form a young adult ministry.

“I think it’s important so we are doing it,” Father Doyle, ordained in 2015, said. “It’s providing a faith community for those people in the interim who tend to disappear. It’s something to plug them into.”

A popular notion in Catholic circles is that young adults “are the future” of the church. Yet, as Father Doyle points out, “they are the church, part of the body.”

Using that as his foundation, Father Doyle said that he is approaching the ministry in a way of “what would I like to do? It’s showing people how to have fun in a faithful way.”

He said a monthly two-for-one is scheduled, which includes one hour of eucharastic adoration with praise and worship followed by two hours socializing at an establishment in the area. During Advent and Lent, he said those nights will be more penitential, and the group will study Bishop Robert E. Barron’s series Pivotal Players, which focuses on the lives of the Saints. 

Father Doyle is also planning “All Souled Out” on Nov. 2, the feast of All Souls Day. Young adults and “young at heart” will meet at Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans at 6 p.m. for a tour of the seminary, followed by a requiem Mass at 7 p.m. The seminarians will be chanting the Gregorian chants during the Mass. 

Following Mass, the gathering will walk to the nearby popular music club Rock ‘n’ Bowl to listen to New Orleans musician Kermit Ruffin perform.

“We are providing a place for young adults to go,” Father Doyle said. “Wouldn’t you like to go for a night out, start out at Mass and end up at a great music venue?

“I’m excited about starting this ministry because there are a lot of people in the parish who will get a lot out of it,” he added. “And then at these kind of events, I just get to relax and hang out and be myself. That is a different dynamic than other types of ministries.”

Although the Vatican defines young adults as ages 21 to 35, Father Doyle said the ministry is open to people of all ages. He said age does not matter, saying, “if you are young at heart, come on and join us. People show up and it’s great.”

For more information, contact the parish at 225-567-3573 or stmargaretchurch@bellsouth.net.