During the conference from ‘Krakow 2 Panama’ held in Rome in April 2017, Fr Fabio Attard SDB was asked to share his thoughts on the third part of the Preparatory Document For The 15th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops “Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment”. We seriously encourage those involved in youth ministry to read his sharing as it is full of insight. The article will be split into 4 parts and we will upload two parts a week. For those who have not yet had the chance to read the preparatory document please click the following links: Maltese – English
Here’s Part 2 of Fr Fabio reflections on the Preparatory Document: Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment. If you haven’t read part 1, please click here, or the image below.
2. Communion and pastoral leadership
Real youth ministry does not imagine or perceive young people as patients needing care! In the pastoral journey of the Church young people are at the same time objects and subjects of ministry, like the Church itself, which evangelized by Christ while and evangelizing Christ!
First, we must look to the young, especially the poorest and those most in need, even the most wretched among them, with the certainty that in the heart of each one there is an accessible point of goodness. It is the duty of each educator and evangelizer to discover this space of goodness, this sensitive cord of the heart and make it vibrate, because even in the most unfortunate cases, the most rebellious and difficult young people, there are strings can vibrate life.
Second, it is important that we are guided by the conviction that bringing the good news is not a privilege of a few, but the invitation offered to all. In Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis acknowledges that “even if it is not always easy to approach young people, progress has been made in two areas: the awareness that the entire community is called to evangelize and educate the young, and the urgent need for the young to exercise greater leadership” (106). With this conviction, today more than ever, we can never give up the goal that sees young people as apostles of other youth.
One of the features that is deeply felt in the youth charismatic experiences is the growth within the hearts of young people not only of the joy of faith in Jesus Christ, but more so the desire that the faith received is also shared, from evangelized to evangelizing. It is a consoling duty to offer young people this high standard of ordinary Christian living as commented by Saint John Paul II at the end of the Holy Year in Novo Millennio Ineunte (NMI)
“The time has come to re-propose wholeheartedly to everyone this high standard of ordinary Christian living: the whole life of the Christian community and of Christian families must lead in this direction. It is also clear however that the paths to holiness are personal and call for a genuine “training in holiness”, adapted to people’s needs. This training must integrate the resources offered to everyone with both the traditional forms of individual and group assistance, as well as the more recent forms of support offered in associations and movements recognized by the Church” (NMI n.31).
Fr Fabio Attard SDB