SAN JOSE City, Nueva Ecija, March 20, 2014— Meeting young recruits in the flesh and online, a group is redoubling efforts to train more young catechists.
“We focus more on the members who have undergone formation programs in their respective parishes, organizations, or communities,” Young Catholic Movement (Youcat) animator Rev. Richard Lagos, who is also an assisting deacon at the St. John the Evangelist Parish in Guimba, Nueva Ecija,
Part of Youcat’s mission is to train dedicated members to become future catechists through its formation program. Phase one of this program relates to “Knowing the Self” in line with Catholic standards on selfhood. Phase two is about “Bridging Leadership” and developing servant-leadership. Phase three zooms in on “Faith Formation”, the final step to becoming a full-pledged KAKA (Kabataang Katekista) or youth catechist.
This formation underscores the book YOUCAT and other catechetical input, and is nowhere like a classroom catechesis. Instead, it uses the “know, share, meet and express” teaching formula.
According to Lagos, at least 26 young people in the San Jose Parish have undergone the second phase of the group’s formation and soon they will qualify to be bona fide KAKA (Kabataang Katekista),” he explained.
Quality not quantity
With 8,500 members online, the Youcat Study Group, the movement highlights a hip way of reaching out to as many young Catholics as possible online.
But in an interview with CBCPNews, Lagos said, he refuses to be blinded by the seemingly large number of online members, explaining that the quality [of membership] matters more than the quantity.
He stressed that Youcat membership does not necessarily mean having to fill out a membership form as in other groups. He said, young individuals who think they have a mission to fulfil in life and have a deep desire to catechize is a Youcat member by default referred to as an “unknown KAKA”. (Raymond A. Sebastián)