Social media confab to make youth ‘Pope-ready’

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MANILA, August 26, 2014—With just a few months ahead of Pope Francis’ scheduled “Philippine invasion” next year, a group of young online missionaries inspired by the papal visit theme “Mercy and Compassion, is set to hold the Catholic Social Media Summit version 3.0 (CSMS v3.0) on September 13 – 14, 2014 in Lingayen, Pangasinan.

CSMS v3 event head Nirva’ana Delacruz pointed out that the best way for Filipinos to prepare for the Holy Father’s visit is to reach out to people who are easily overlooked or forgotten even by so-called “good Catholics” through “authentic encounters”, something which the event aims to promote.

Pope Francis visits the Kkottongnae House of Hope in Korea during his first trip to Asia.(Photo: Preparatory Committee for the 2014 Papal Visit to Korea)

“We keep hearing so many things about this thing called New Evangelization. Well and good, but often people don’t even know what they’re really talking about,” she shared, explaining that Catholics need to go offline and encounter people in the real world.

According to Jhonsen Sales, CSMS v3.0 workshop head, seven workshops designed to transform “armchair faith warriors” into “advocates of mercy and compassion” will be part of the event.

These advocacies will touch on human trafficking, dealing with members of the LGBT community, Marian consecration, the social costs of being an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW), election catechism, pornography, and justice, Sales said.

Urging “authentic encounters”, Delacruz, who is also the secretary of YouthPinoy, explained Catholics need to use the New Media to bring the advocacies of the Church to more people, especially those who may be baptized Christians, but have for some reason drifted from the Faith.

The CSMSv3 advocacies, Sales explained, are rooted in the “Seven Spiritual Works of Mercy” as taught by the Catholic Church, and are oriented towards the soul.

“Just as the Corporal Works of Mercy are directed towards relieving corporeal suffering, the even more important aim of the Spiritual Works of Mercy is to relieve spiritual suffering,” he said.

Paragraph 2447 of Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 2447) reads: “The works of mercy are charitable actions by which we come to the aid of our neighbor in his spiritual and bodily necessities.  Instructing, advising, consoling, comforting are spiritual works of mercy, as are forgiving and bearing wrongs patiently.”

The CSMS v3.0 will be held at the Pangasinan Training and Development Center. Registration is P800, inclusive of a kit, ID, and meals. A registration of P1,200 per head will include accommodations. For more information, contact Esteve Mata at 0916-2783807; Sher Cuison at 0921-4746638 or through email, catholicsocialmediasummit@gmail.com. For more information, visit www.catholicsocialmediasummit.com or www.youthpinoy.com

The CSMS v3.0 is the flagship event of YouthPinoy, a group of online missionaries under the auspices of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines Media Office and the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Youth. (Raymond A. Sebastián)

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