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B'lore: First national consultation held at Apostolic Carmel Generalate

Nov. 13, 2013

On November 9, the CCBI National Youth Commission began its historic first national consultation at  Apostolic Carmel Generalate, Bangalore. The regional secretaries, and the diocesan secretaries of Youth Commissions and the national coordinators of five major youth movements in India participated. The consultation started with the lighting of lamp by Bishop Henry D’Souza, Chairman of CCBI National youth Commission, Bishop Vincent Samuel, the member Bishop and Bishop Soundarajan, chairman of Tamil Nadu Regional Youth Commission, Fr Elias Ofm, the executive secretary of CCBI National Youth Commission and other delegates from various youth movements, followed by a short prayer service.

 Fr Elias , the executive secretary, in his inaugural address, stressed the need of the national Youth Commission to transform millions of Youth in India from ”being Observers of Life to Participants of Life” and welcomed the delegates to the first national consultation.At this historic event, The CCBI national youth Commission released a  handbook which consisted of the structure of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of India, CCBI- National commission for youth , Extracts from the pastoral plan of CCBI, strategies for implementing CCBI pastoral plan for a vibrant youth apostolate in India.The first session was conducted by Bishop Henry D’Souza the Chairman of CCBI youth commission explaining the vision and mission/ role clarification of CCBI and CCBI youth commission. "Vision: The Catholic Church in India, a Community of Christ’s faithful, called to proclaim the Gospel and to be at the service of God and all people.

Mission: Committed to deepen our faith in Jesus Christ through the Word of God and Prayer to proclaim the Gospel in word and deed, to live lives of love and service, to promote integral human development with a preferential option for the poor  and marginalized for the salvation of all. "


He also explained the objective of the youth movement to make young people true Disciples of Christ – declaring and living one’s catholic identity, to participate in the Life of the Church - enriched by the Word of GOD and Sacraments, to transform young people into Christian Leaders building a new society, to empower ‘youth to youth’ out-reach initiatives and to foster a culture of Excellence that leads to Holistic Success – Individual and Collective.He invited the priests to lead the youth to faith and to transform the society and give Jesus to the youth.Followed by this Fr Faustin Lobo the National Director (PMS) presented the pastoral plan in which addressed  the priest to set vision for the youth, to carry the fire of God to evangelize the youth of India and to start the result oriented programme. He ended with the statement that all this can be done not by working for the youth but working with the youth.

 Strategies to implement CCBI Pastoral Plan into youth apostolate in India were briefly explained by Fr. George Mutholil in which he explained the ways to plan about the pastoral plan in  statistical way in groups by setting the objectives, programs proposed, who will do it, when, where, resources needed, means of resource, who will monitor and follow up. Translating strategies into an action plan at Regional and Diocesan levels and movements’ level was discussed by different groups according to their regional, diocesan and movements for the empowerment of youth frame work after which each group presented their objective and plan of implementation at their regions for the coming three years.The Holy Eucharist was concelebrated in which Bishop Henry invited the priests to enlighten and lead the youth to Jesus. The day ended with camp fire followed by night prayer.On November 10 the day was started with the concelebrated Eucharistic celebration followed by the Panel discussion on Ground reality of youth today by Fr Divya Paul (Moderator), Jose Jacab (senior youth of ICYM), Cyril Prabhu   (Urban Youth from Bangalore) and Helen Swetha (Rural youth from Kolar Gold Fields).

 The problems and challenges faced by the urban and rural youth were discussed. The panel gave a clear picture of current standard and mentality of the youth. The youth unanimously said that they look up to the priests as their role model.Later the panel discussion on Success stories of youth commissions/movements was conducted by Bishop Henry D’Souza (MODERATOR), Bishop Soundarajan (Regional Chairman Bishop, TN),  in which Fr Marie Joseph (Regional Secretary from Karnataka), Adolf Goldwyn (Animator of Jesus Youth) Fr Anil D’sa SDB (Karnataka regional Director of Bosco Youth), Fr Savio   (Diocesan Commission, Mumbai) spoke about the way they function and lead the youth by their own vision and mission by conducting programs, retreats and conventions.After the lunch the discussion was held in which clarifications were made on ways of strengthening the functions of Diocesan, regional commission, National Youth Movements. The ways and means of networking  with National Youth Commission (CCBI), were discussed  by Bishop Cyprian Monis  (moderator), Bishop Henry D’Souza (Chairman of National Youth Commission), Fr Franklyn D’Souza (National Director of ICYM (CBCI), Antony (National Co-ordinator of Jesus Youth), Fr C PVarghese (National representative of Bosco Youth). Later Bishop Henry D’Souza and Bishop Cyprian Monis addressed the gathering to give importance for the faith formation of the youth at parish level and  to  create interest in the youth to form the parish youth group.

The Proposal for CCBI pastoral plan data base youth commission, to collect the data from the youth animators, to start the youth movement, in each parish by networking with the youth by collecting the details and feeding it in the form of software was presented which will make the networking  with the youth groups easyFr. Elias Ofm, the Executive Secretary, then presented the Project plan of CCBI youth Commission for the next three years. The formation of CCBI National Youth Commission Consulting Team was formed which consisted of 3 Regional Directors, 4 National Coordinators of Youth Movements, Youth from across India. The last presentation on the outcome of “Action Plan to implement the Pastrol Plan in Regions/Dioceses and Networking” was discussed. The secretaries and the national coordinators were asked to discuss this plan in their respective regions with the the help of diocesan secretaries and youth and to frame a concrete plan of action within the next three months.

Bishop Henry D’Souza gave the concluding address. Fr Elias thanked all the delegates and the organizeres for making the event a great success. As a sign of gratitude, a momento was given to all the regional secretaries and the sisters of Apostolic Carmel. The Chairman, Bishop Henry D’Souza on behalf of the Commission and the delegates thanked and complemented Fr Elias, for the success of the national consultation by making an excellent arrangement and organization.The national consultation concluded with a thanksgiving prayer.


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