Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta

Father Branson Hipp speaks to 160 teens from six parishes who went on a SonFest beach retreat with youth leaders and priests June 6-10 in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. Father Hipp was ordained in 2015.


Teens gather to experience Son at the beach

Published June 23, 2016

FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla.—SonFest 2016 brought some 160 teens of the Atlanta Archdiocese to the Florida beachside. Six parishes were represented at the beach for the retreat from June 6-10, said Barb Garvin, of Holy Cross Church, Atlanta.

This year’s theme was discipleship as the teens participated in prayer, listening and adoration in front of the Eucharist, Garvin said.

The priests leading the spiritual talks were Father Branson Hipp, just ordained in 2015, Msgr. John Walsh and Franciscan Father Gary Johnson.

Kyle Fromme, a participant from St. Oliver Plunkett Church, Snellville, said, “Arriving at Fort Walton, a sudden peace washed over me because I knew that I would have a whole week with my friends and with God. All in all, this year’s Sonfest was an amazing experience, from the beach, to the music, to the sessions, to the fantastic core team. I am so happy to have been a part of Sonfest 2016.”

For more information about Sonfest, contact Barb Garvin at