Youth go out as ‘missionaries’, inspired by Calungsod

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LAOAG CITY, April 15, 2014 – A group of young people are showing that age is not a requirement to be a missionary. Taking their cue from San Pedro Calungsod, some 68 youth from the Diocese of Laoag made a commitment last April 8 to become modern-day missionaries by joining an institute dedicated to the young saint.

Diocese of Laoag's first "SPICY" batch of young missionaries committed to become "apostles of New Evangelization. (Photo: Jessa Ortega Cadano)

“This is our response in order to make young people be involved in the Church,” said Fr. Lester T. Menor, the diocesan youth director who also serves as the director of the Saint Pedro Calungsod Institute for the Young (SPCIY).

On April 8, the institute concluded with a Taizé prayer and the Veneration of the Cross as the young missionaries dedicated themselves to become “apostles of New Evangelization through the life and example of Saint Pedro Calungsod.”

Organized by the Diocesan Youth Commission (DYC), the SPCIY aims to form young people to become “missionaries of the New Evangelization.”

“We would like to emulate the life and example of Saint Pedro Calungsod, who also gave his life as a young missionary. We are hoping that these young people would also do the same by sharing their talents to their fellow youth,” Menor added.

Last April 5 to 8, Laoag youth from the different parishes attended a series of activities at the Shalom Beach Resort in Puyupuyan, Pasuquin, Ilocos Norte, which included a course on the “Life and Spirituality of Calungsod”; Taizé prayer; catechism on the sacraments; Bible-sharing and Lectio Divina; Youth Ministry and Storytelling were offered to the “young missionaries” as part of their academic formation.

Aside from the formation courses, they were also given the opportunity to live out their learnings. Taizé prayer was held every night as a means to end the day. The young people were given also the chance to share about their life during their practicum for the Storytelling Course.

According to Rommell Sagucio, the diocesan youth coordinator and the institute’s coordinator, “We hope that there will be more young people who will be part of the institute next year. We will be introducing new subjects and further formation for those who have gone the institute. This is just the start of it and we hope that San Pedro Calungsod will guide us through in this endeavour.”

Established on October 27, 2012 during the Diocesan Youth Leaders’ Assembly, the SPCIY “serves as a venue for every young person to grow in the ministry, develop their God-given talents and use these talents in reaching out to other young people in any form as new missionaries of the world.” (Rainier Marquez/YouthPinoy)  

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