Ariccia (Italia). The Triennial Test Days in Europe and the Middle East are taking place in Ariccia. Central to the third day were “young people, the heart of the mission”.

On 10 January 2018, the day was coordinated by the CIEP and led by the Provincial Sr. María del Rosario García Ribas, CIEP President, and began with the Eucharistic Celebration presided over by Fr Fabio Attard SdB, Regional Councilor for Youth Ministry. Don Fabio, in his homily, commented on the Word “There is a boy here who has five loaves and two fish; but what is this for so many people?” emphasizing how the authenticity of the gift is worth more than the quantity and how important it is to know how to choose God and not the works of God.

After a moment of invocation to the Holy Spirit and the Visualization of the miracle of the multiplication of bread, Mother General, Mother Yvonne Reungoat elaborated on the theme “Here is the field where you must work”.

She proposed some meditation points: the young are our “sacred ground”; Don Bosco: a sign of God’s tenderness among the young; Mother Mazzarello: among the young women with a feminine and Marian style; awaken the oratorian and missionary heart; with young people; young missionaries of other young people.

Mother recalled the Constitutions: The young are the field of predilection that “commits us to make ourselves for them, at the school of Mary, sign and mediation of the charity of Christ the Good Shepherd, through a Christian project of integral education in the style of Preventive System” (Constitution No. 63). She emphasized how young people are the heart of our mission, “the sacred ground” where we meet the Lord: with him we realize his dream for the Institute” (Acts GC XXIII, Presentation p.6).

Letting ourselves be questioned by the Word of the day, she commented: “The key to the miracle is in the hands of a boy. Only one; this highlights the importance of the individual person, of the each young person for Jesus. Today the day is dedicated to prayer for vocations. Young people are our life, with them we continually invent the path to realize God’s plan. This is our mission, a continuous call! “Together with the young” is the invitation of General Chapter XXIII and asks us to assume the oratorian heart as a criterion for renewing our presences and our communities “.

In the late morning, the six groups gathered to discuss and dialog on the prophetic gestures and best practices to identify so they may be a stimulus and renewal in the realities. They were then presented in the assembly in a creative and youthful way.

In the afternoon, there was the presentation by Fr. Rossano Sala SdB, Special Secretary for the Synod of Bishops on Youth. He gave a reflection on the theme “The leaven in the dough – the vocational soul of pastoral”. The points addressed were: faith is the living fire that generates the pastoral action of the Church; the believer’s sensitivity confirms the goodness of a vocational anthropology; a correct pastoral action is destined to create a vocational culture; youth ministry necessarily has a vocational soul; vocational animation concerns the whole of pastoral care.

Following this was a round table in which the simple, spontaneous, and joyful voices of some young people and FMA novices (representing the three Conferences) were heard, and who, in response to some questions, recounted their vocational experience and offered incentives to the participants in the Evaluation on accompaniment, on the family spirit, and Salesian spirituality, on the concreteness of the proposals, and on working in synergy and harmony. The young people ended their panel with some twitters at the meeting: GO FORWARD AND FEAR NOTHING. BET ON ALL, NO ONE EXCLUDED. DO NOT FORGET THAT WE ARE A FAMILY. THANK YOU AIM HIGH


Fr. Rossano Sala concluded the meeting by placing the accent on the attention span of the assembly in listening to young people, emphasizing that “the center and synthesis of our spirit is pastoral charity characterized by the youthful dynamism that is revealed so strongly in Don Bosco … (Article 10 of the SDB Constitution). Our way of acting is according to youthful dynamism. Not just listening to a conference, but talking to young people. On December 8, 1965, Vatican Council II concluded with a message to the young: the Church is the youthfulness of the world. The next Synod – he concluded – should help us to rediscover youthful dynamism: ability to risk, courage, resourcefulness, strength, ability to get up quickly after falls, to dream, gaze of hope, gaze of the future, live the Christian life as an ongoing adventure.

Testimonies at the Round Table


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.