Rome (Italy). On 9 July 2023, an online meeting took place on the theme “Young people, you are the now of God” (Christus vivit) organized by the Youth Ministry Sector of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians and addressed to the Provincial Coordinators, to YM teams, and to the young representatives of the Provinces of the PCI Interprovincial Conference.

The meeting gave the young people the opportunity to share about the condition of youth and the significance of the Salesian Youth Movement in the accompaniment of young people.

The event began with a warm welcome and prayer, animated by Sister Lolia Pfozhumai Neli, collaborator of the Sector, around the question: “Tell me why?” regarding the awareness and responsibility towards the cry of the young.

“A synthesis of the journey” is the theme of the presentation by Sr. Runita Borja, Councilor for Youth Ministry, who gave an overview of the work of the YM Sector, its members and mission. Sr. Runita focused on the four ways of animation – Accompaniment, Formation/Information, Advocacy, and on the creation of networks.

However, “Listening to the voice of the young” was the central moment of the meeting. The representatives of the young people of the seven Provinces expressed their concerns, opinions, and suggestions to the SYM leaders. The sharing of the young people was sincere and profound, a dialogue with an open heart. Gratitude resounded in their words, recalling the loving care they received from the FMA. On the other hand, the clear cry of the young challenged the conscience and sense of duty of the FMA of India in the year of the Centenary of their presence.

A word from the young:

“Being young today means facing an unprecedented set of challenges and opportunities determined by aspects such as culture, geographical position, and socio-economic status” (Arogia).

“It means being instantly connected with people from all over the world and learning to navigate in an ever-changing and evolving world” (Eliza).

“Today being young means having no fears and being ready to face any challenge, worthy of our youthful condition” (Jeromi).

“Young people know how to enjoy life and are in constant contact through social media, to keep up to date with events in the surrounding world, also communicating the values of love and peace” (Stefi).

“Young people should stand out from the crowd and be true to their convictions and beliefs” (Manuel).

“Being young today means having dreams and trying to pursue them, beyond the many challenges, fears, and difficulties, all elements that make our youthful life very exciting” (Suzanna Charlotte).

“Today’s young people have a great responsibility to ‘build a brighter future’ for the world, beyond the many obstacles and difficulties that stand in the way” (Christine).

“Being young today means being free, discovering your potential, finding your passion. Dreaming of being successful professionally and making a positive contribution to the world” (Sheba Mary).

“It means navigating a complex landscape of technological change, social issues and personal aspirations” (Dency).

“Young people are digital natives and access information instantly. While the digital offers opportunities for learning, connection, and creativity, it also makes us fear global issues such as political instability, terrorism, etc.” (Helen).

“We are big dreamers! We have a great interest in everything, but many young people do not have adequate guidance and support from adults and therefore fail to achieve their goals” (Niharika).

“Young people experience a relationship gap. Many times, we need a friendly chat or a pat on the back to overcome all fears and insecurities, but we lack people who listen to us” (Tejashwini).

“As young people, we need to hold our point of view, rather than relying completely on the opinion of others. Choosing our profession based on personal interests” (Ananya).

In the closing remarks, Sister Runita gave the participants the good news of an upcoming online meeting with other English-speaking countries, which will be held in September. The young people and the Sisters expressed their appreciation and gratitude towards the YM team coordinated by the Councilor, for the enriching, pleasant, and stimulating sharing. Finally, the participants forcefully reaffirmed to the FMA their commitment to listen to the cry of the young and to accompany them on their life journey.


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