AYD preparations unmoved by military tension in Korea

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MANILA, April 4, 2013—Escalating tension between North and South Korea has not affected the ongoing preparations for the 6th Asian Youth Day (AYD), which will be held next year in Daejeon.

Organizers of the AYD in the Diocese of Daejeon has not communicated any plans of postponing or cancelling the youth gathering scheduled on August 10 to 20, 2014, according to the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Youth (ECY).

“There is none so far,” ECY executive secretary Fr. Conegundo Garganta told YouthPinoy when asked if AYD organizers issued any announcement relative to the political turmoil in the host country.

The ECY organizes the Filipino delegates who will participate in the AYD and communicates directly to the AYD organizers under the host diocese. Garganta said the ECY is scheduled to open the application process for interested pilgrims towards the end of 2013.

During the third AYD preparatory meeting last March 11 to 15, the Diocese of Daejeon and the Youth Desk of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC) met with representatives of youth commissions throughout the continent, including ECY.

“The latest meeting was about finalizing the schedule and flow of program for the Days in the Diocese, actual AYD, and the Asian Youth Ministers meeting thereafter,” he said.

Garganta reminded Filipinos who may be interested to join the AYD to expect that the event will be different from the World Youth Day (WYD).

“Though it looks like the WYD, the AYD is different. Even the mechanics for AYD set limitations in the number of delegates that each country can send to join the AYD, unlike the WYD which is open to all,” he said.

“The number of people joining the AYD will be dependent on the country’s Catholic population,” he added.

The priest also said the AYD should not be an alternative to the WYD since the former is open to Asians only, and encouraged young Filipinos to still consider participating in the upcoming WYD, which is set on July 17 to 28 in Brazil.

The ECY has extended the deadline for application to be part of the ECY-Philippines Delegation to the WYD up to April 15. (YouthPinoy)

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