Youth confab to explore new ways of evangelization

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SAN JOSÉ City, Nueva Ecija, Oct. 14, 2015 – An international conference of young Catholics to be hosted by the Philippines promises to discover fresh and varied ways how the faithful can make the most out of the popular Youth Catechism (Youcat) book.

“The Youcat Congress intends to serve as a venue for exploring the potentials of Youcat as an effective tool for evangelization. Now more than ever, our country and the rest of the Asian world need a new method of spreading the Good News in response to Pope Francis’ resounding call for New Evangelization,” shared Jomar Luciano, assistant director of Youcat Philippines, in an interview.

Aside from discovering what he calls the “beauty of catechism,” the youth leader from the Diocese of San José in Nueva Ecija said the forthcoming summit seeks to underscore its importance of context in the task of evangelization.

According to Luciano, Youcat delegates will pick up novel means of catecheses and how to apply the same within their respective groups and organizations through the Youcat study group.

“Being able to use the Youcat study group method in our own parishes and communities and of course working with Youcat Philippines in spreading the catechism of the Catholic Church. Plus, you get to know new friends!” he added.

Luciano went on to acknowledge the influence on Youcat of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI who was the pontiff when the book first came out.

Part of his foreword for Youcat reads: “Study this Catechism with passion and perseverance. Make a sacrifice of your time for it! Study it in the quiet of your room; read it with a friend; form study groups and networks; share with each other on the Internet. By all means continue to talk with each other about your faith.”

Meanwhile, for Youcat Philippines director Fr. Richard P. Lagos, the catechetical event aims to “bring the Joy of the Gospel on God’s mercy and compassion to the world’s youth through Youcat” ahead of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy to open on Dec. 8, 2015 with its theme “Echoing God’s Promise of Mercy” taken from Mother Mary’s Magnificat (Luke 1:54).

Also dubbed “Congress of Mercy,” the first International YouCat Congress is scheduled on Nov. 5 to 7, 2015 at the Development Academy of the Philippines Convention Center (DAPPC) in Tagaytay City, Philippines.

“Catechist-speakers” and their topics are as follows:

  • Manila Archbishop Luís Antonio G. Cardinal Tagle, who is also a member of YouCat International Advisory Board on “Remembering and Retelling the Story of the Poor Christ in Asia”
  • Mariologist and author Msgr. Sabino Vengco, The Role of Mary in the New Evangelization
  • Msgr. Gerry Santos, CBCP-ECCCE executive secretary, “Youth and Catechesis: Echoing God’s Promise and Mercy”
  • Pasig Bishop Mylo Hubert C. Vergara, chair of the Episcopal Commission on Social Communications (ECSC), “Responses to the Challenges of Catechesis in the Philippines and Asia”

Moreover, YouCat Foundation International President Bernhard Meuser will take delegates down memory lane with his talk “The Birth of the Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church (YouCat) and the Provenance of the YouCat Development Project,” and Lagos is tasked to discuss “Youcat Philippines: Hopes and Goals.”

Registration for Youcat Congress is open until Oct. 15.

Luciano noted that one free slot is up for grabs for every three students already booked for the conference.

For further information, visit: http://www.youcat.ph/?page_id=14, or email secretariat@youcat.ph/. (Raymond A. Sebastián / CBCP News)

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