Going on Generation Life is a very powerful experience because you are physically standing up for what you believe in. While on the Generation Life pilgrimage, we are called to share the goodness of life with those marching with us, those we are marching for, and everyone else who is witnessing the March for Life in their own unique way. As amazing as the March for Life is in itself, there are so many more reasons to get excited for Generation Life 2018.
1. You Get a Plenary Indulgence
This is huge! Pope Francis has granted a plenary indulgence to all those who attend the March for Life this weekend. Everything you need to do to obtain the indulgence will be offered during the Generation Life pilgrimage. Additionally, you have to be free from mortal sin and have an interior desire to be completely free from all sins (even venial ones). This is a very special thing, so try your best to be in a state of prayer throughout the pilgrimage.
If you need more information about what an indulgence is, check out the video below. Fr. Mike Schmitz does a great job at explaining it in a fun way that’s very easy to understand.
Something that I have always loved about GenLife is that they offer confession every night after programming. The lines aren’t as long as they are on Steubenville, but the experience you have during confession is just as powerful, but when is confession never a powerful experience?! During confession, you are speaking directly to the Lord and asking for His forgiveness.
3. Amazing Speakers & Awesome Programming
Every year, the Office of Youth Ministry brings in amazing speakers to give their testimonies. I have gone on Generation Life three times and none of the talks were ever mediocre. Not only are the speakers great, but Generation Life takes it to a whole new level with a live band, greats hosts, Adoration, and Mass.
4. Quality Time with Others
Believe it or not, the bus rides could be one of the most powerful moments on the trip. Every year on the way home, my youth group asks all of the leaders of the group- youth minister, pastor, seminarians, etc.- to share their vocation story with everyone on the bus. Teens are also given the opportunity to share what impacted them most on the trip. This is a great way to grow closer to your friends while on the bus.
Whether it’s late night talks in the hotel room or good laughs about great moments, getting closer to the people you are marching with will help you grow in your relationship with them. It will also provide the support you need to stand up for life more confidently.
5. Closing Mass at the National Shrine
We get the opportunity to attend a very moving mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception right before we go home. The basilica is stunning and the Mass we celebrate there is a perfect way to end this life-changing pilgrimage.