(Spain). On 25 September 2021, the Province Meeting of the Animators of Free Time of “Mary Help of Christians” Province (SPA) took place, coordinated by the Province Commission for Free Time of the Youth Ministry Sector.
This first meeting had the objective of introducing the young Free Time Animators to the pastoral proposal of the year from the theme #TodosSomosMornese, deepening together the roots of the Salesian charism, in particular the life of St. Mary Domenica Mazzarello, Maìn.
Due to the situation linked to the pandemic, the meeting took place in semi-presence. In the morning, the animators met at the local Houses or Works for face-to-face activities, while in the afternoon they connected by videoconference to share with a greater number of participants.
The presentation of the theme took place in the morning through different dynamics for expressing and deepening one’s dreams, where one’s ‘Salesian holy land’ is located and how it appears, and how to be the ‘outgoing Mornese’, through which one is called to fulfill one’s commitment to animation. This time was lived by the Animators of all the realities with great intensity and creativity.
The afternoon’s online connections aimed to consolidate the sense of belonging to the Province with concrete information on the organization of the Youth Ministry Sector and, specifically, of the Free Time Area.
Some resonances of the young participants:
“It was a long-awaited meeting, because I really had the desire to be with each other again. After what I experienced in the last two years, I wanted to know about the programming and return to work with the same passion as always to continue to educate and teach children as it was done long ago with me, and thus be able to ignite the flame in the hearts of children and young people, so that they in turn can continue this project, which gives us all joy and hope.”(Bea, Valponasca Youth Center).
“Together with other Youth Centers of the Province with a common purpose, we organized, planned, and participated in the great potential that together, the Salesian Youth Ministry and Leisure Time have.” (Álvaro, Arcodavella Youth Center).
“This meeting awakens in me a sense of belonging and family to this Work that I already consider home. We talk about very different realities and people from different backgrounds, which is very enriching, because it helps us to see the strength of our desires and our drive to achieve a common goal.”(Natalia, Arcodavella Youth Center).
“It is a starting point to begin this Course with enthusiasm, knowing that other Animators in different parts of Spain, have the same objectives as us and that we all follow the same path.” (Laura, Cejusa Youth Center).
The Provincial Commission for Free Time summarizes the challenge for the Animators as follows:
“In a time of change that brings with it great challenges, the challenge for the Free Time Animators is not to stop but to continue being ‘young people for young people’ in the style of Maín, moving forward ‘with a big and generous heart’, placing all our trust in Mary to be ‘Mornese today’, and like her, helpers among the young people”.