Saturday, July 23, 2011

1st District Youth Visitations

I just concluded my 1st visitations to all the youth groups from the various languages from the parishes in my district. There are 7 main churches in this North Central Johor District. Since just recently (effective April 1st, 2011) being appointed as the Youth Minister for the District, the objective of this visit was more to establish connection with the youth groups and to get to know their leaders and parish priests. I must say, I am very pleased with this first visit and it has been beneficial for me hearing the needs and experiences from the youth leaders themselves. They even shared all their joys, enthusiasm, struggles, frustrations and disappointments which I have taken all into serious consideration. I am also happy to hear first hand from some parish priests of their views, aspirations and suggestions for their youth groups.

One of my actions after this visit is a North Central Johor District Youth Leaders Retreat which I am offering to all the youths especially from this district. It will be held from September 16-18, 2011 filled with spiritual input, personal and group reflections, workshop activities and a half day teambuilding session. A selected team of young people are working and praying for the success of this event; they are the Redemptorist Mission Team from Singapore, Tim Fernandez from Live & Inspire, and the Youths representing the Diocese Language Apostolates.

After this retreat, I hope to continue my visit to the parishes on regular basis, journeying with them. During the 1st visit, I was very surprised by the different youth leaders and groups of their capabilities and enthusiasm even with limited resources and coming from rural parishes. I am really looking forward to meeting all of them again.

As for my ministry, I pray the prayer of Solomon asking God to be his guide so as to guide His people. “O Lord, my God, you have made me, your servant, to minister to your young people in this Diocese of Malacca-Johore; but I am a mere youth, not knowing at all how to act. I serve you in the midst of the people whom you have chosen, a people so vast that it cannot be numbered or counted. Give your servant, therefore, an understanding heart to judge your people and to distinguish right from wrong. For who is able to lead this vast people of yours?” (1 King 3:6-9)