On Saturday, April 30, 2022, a meeting of RYVM leaders from around the world took place virtually. Redemptorists and young people from 5 continents gathered for an online conference to pray together and share their experience of faith.
The richness of this meeting was the great diversity of people. Young people from Japan, Brazil, Canada and Ghana in their testimonies told how they met Jesus and share their faith with other young people.
Father General Michael Brehl CSsR greeted the participants. Father Pedro Lopez CSsR provided a catechesis session on, “Where does Jesus send us“. He presented a vision of youth and vocational ministry for Redemptorists, encouraging the participants to take up the call for evangelization in the communities where they live and work.
The next point of the meeting was working in small groups on the topic: “What is the biggest challenge for RYVM today? To whom, how, in what way do we evangelize?”. Participants from different parts of the world met together and share their experience. The following are some insights that arose from the small groups:
“One of the biggest challenges facing RYVM is the secularization that wants to relegate the religious and spiritual dimension to something irrelevant. This reality can also be a possibility to strengthen our Christian faith and our following.”
“We have to find new ways to make the church and Jesus more relevant today. Go beyond our limits.”
“We need to approach our young people with a listening ear and with compassion. They should be welcomed and reached out at the level of faith and life where they are at.”
“Another challenge is that of inculturation. Each country has its own styles, sensibilities and accents. We must be aware of them to reach young people in their sociocultural context
How? We shouldn’t just sit and wait but rather reach out to the youth wherever and however we can.”
“With evangelizing, there should be direction and companionship and in doing this, we need to be creative, and take initiative.”
“Need to minister both to youth and their families.”
“A lot of people are lonely. And we need to find places to make an encounter with us is an encounter with Christ.”
During the meeting, the plan of preparations for the World Youth Day in Lisbon 2023 and the Alphonsian Day was also presented.
After the end of the official part of the meeting, the participants had an opportunity to meet in Conference groups to get to know about each others’ work in RYVM, and to vision further the work of RYVM in the Conference.
The meeting was attended by 58 people which included lay leaders and Redemptorists. The meeting was organized and hosted by the General Commission of RYVM.
Fr. Paweł Drobot CSsR