28th Local World Youth Day
March 21-24, 2013
San Fernando Rey Parish, Liloan
Pastoral Center (Patria de Cebu),
P. Burgos St., Cebu City 6000
With the publication of the KA-LAKBAY Directory for Catholic Youth Ministry in the Philippines by the Episcopal Commission on Youth of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines in 2004, the COY has since started to pattern its programs as suggested in the book. The directory is a product of both scriptural studies and scientific research on effective pastoral care for the youth.
To in-flesh the guidelines set by Ka-Lakbay, COY held a Strategic Planning and Organizational Meeting on November 18-19, 2006, participated in by the commission’s pool of youth ministers and youth coordinators and leaders in the districts.
During that assembly, COY modified the Vision and Mission statements which were created on 1993.
A community of committed young believers in the Catholic Church of the Archdiocese of Cebu having Christian values for their integral human development responding to moral and social concerns.
- Lead young people to encounter God in a personal way and let them experience a change of mind and heart centered on Jesus, and manifest his/her newfound faith freely, personally and consciously.
- Provide basic catechetical instructions using the Catechism for Filipino Catholics (CFC highlighting a Christ-centered spirituality, inspired by the examples of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Blessed Pedro Calungsod.
- Build communities within the youth ministry settings anchored on faith, hope and love for their fellow through activities that promote fellowship and unity.
- Equip young people to effectively respond to moral and social concerns affecting them, their family and their community.
- Develop and train committed youth to become leaders in their own youth ministry setting preparing them for future leadership challenges in their adult life.
- Animate young people into sincere worship of God in community prayers and personal devotion.
Existing programs as well as future plans of the COY were classified according to intended audience. These were based on Chapter III of Ka-Lakbay, “Mission of Youth Ministry.” In all of the components, the Worship aspect is indispensable. As defined by Kalakbay, the following are the components of youth ministry:
Young people need to encounter God in a personal way, experience a conversion of mind and heart rooted in the ways of teachings of Jesus, and express this choice freely, personally and consciously.
Evangelization recognizes the need on witnessing, “which is living according to the Gospel... and ... giving testimony to our experience of God's grace.” It is also participatory, making it both empowering and community-building.
According to the General Directory for Catechesis, catechesis is not only giving information, but also a comprehensive faith formation that includes more than instruction; it is an apprenticeship in Christian living. It does not simply involve teaching about Jesus or to put people in touch with him. Above all, it aims to bring people in communion and intimacy with Jesus. Its fundamental tasks are promoting knowledge of faith, liturgical education, moral formation, teaching to pray, education for community life, and missionary initiation.Social Action
The youth ministry should offer and involve young people in activities and efforts that promote social awareness and involvement, such as open forums, group discussions, community immersions, socio-civic activities, voters’ education and other similar endeavors. Eventually, these youth themselves should be at the forefront of social action.
In the early Church, fellowship was more relational than recreational. It included sharing (cf. Jn 1:7) and breaking bread (cf. Acts 2:42) with their fellow faithful, as well as developing intimacy with Christ (cf. 1 Cor 1:9) and other believers (cf. Gal 2:9). This is a much different image from simply hanging out with one another or merely engaging in sports. Fellowship, in its truest sense, is building a community within a youth ministry.Leadership
Building leadership among young people is a key element to ensure that they become mature and strong Christians. It is also vital to the well-being of youth ministry. Without a core of committed, trained, and reliable leaders, youth groups often crumble when a youth minister or leader leaves.
Investing on young people through formation and experience ensures a stable pool of future church leaders. If they develop leadership skills today through the youth ministry, they can have a tremendous impact on the Church and the community in the future.