MOVED by the tragic stories reported during Schoolies Week on the Gold Coast, Brisbane’s Faith on Tap team hope to encourage school leavers towards goodness and virtues at their next event in December.
School leavers are invited to a special “Schoolies Edition” of FOT during the school holidays to connect with other Catholics before embarking on post-high school life.
FOT team member Allison Atkins was on retreat at Marian Valley, listening to the heart-wrenching story of Isabelle Colman, a school leaver who died after an apartment fall during Schoolies Week last year.
The story was shared in a homily given by Marian Valley’s Pauline priest and police chaplain, Fr Columba Macbeth-Green.
Fr Macbeth-Green was on duty with police the night of Miss Colman’s accident and administered the last rites to the 17 year-old former Mt St Michael’s College student.
The story “left a strong imprint” on Miss Atkins.
“When school finishes many familiar social structures disappear for friendship and co-curricular activates likes sports, music, and so on,” she said.
She said these “disappearing social structures” make young people more susceptible to “gravitate towards binge drinking”, a major problem at Schoolies.
Miss Atkins said it was a priority for FOT, a social apostolate aimed at inspiring young adults into living virtuous lives, to give young people an alternative to a the increasing binge drinking culture.
“We must help young people take their lives seriously, even if they don’t,” she said.
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