A chance encounter at a diocesan event led to an exciting first-time invitation for William Gavin, director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries for the Diocese of Burlington.

Gavin, who is also a musician, will be providing music for Mass, praise and worship during the largest and longest-running outdoor summer Christian music and social justice festival in New England: SoulFest: Music, Love, Action. It will take place Aug. 2-4 at Gunstock Mountain Resort in Gilford, New Hampshire.

“Someone associated with the SoulFest planning committee heard me play for one of the diocesan events and invited me to participate,” Gavin said.

The Diocese of Manchester has established a large Catholic tent where daily Mass will be celebrated, along with Adoration, opportunity for confessions, praying the

rosary and conversations with clergy.

“I will be playing for the Thursday morning Mass, Aug. 2, as well as providing music for the praise and worship time during the day,” he said.

Gavin has provided music for a number of events throughout Vermont and, currently, plays once or twice a month in his home parish, Immaculate Conception, in St. Albans.

An estimated 6,000 people are expected to attend SoulFest. “It is a wonderful opportunity to be strengthened in faith by seeing thousands of other Christian young people, great Christian bands such as For King and Country, TobyMac, Matt Maher and more. I hope the music I play will draw people into prayer and help them grow in their love for God and others.”

According to the website, the mission of SoulFest “is to celebrate God’s love and encourage all who attend to live from the inside out as soul-connected, risk-taking Believers in God’s love. A clearer understanding of God’s love will increase our capacity to love ourselves, those with whom we live, and our neighbors. Our capacity to take action against any injustice will increase when we truly believe that God’s love is real, for everyone, prevails and is unconditional.”

For more information and a full lineup go to thesoulfest.com.