ASIA/MYANMAR - Church in Myanmar is giving more attention to youth pastoral with the help of religious congregations

Thursday, 1 December 2005

Yangon (Fides Service) - The Church in Myanmar is giving more attention to youth pastoral: thanks to the presence of Salesians spiritual and pastoral activities involving young people, students and seminarians are multiplying. The Catholic community is committed to helping children and adolescents without schooling and many without family because in the past they were forcefully recruited as child soldiers. Vocations are flourishing: Hakha diocese in western Myanmar on the border with India has at least 70 seminarians and all over the country growing numbers of young people want to give their life the Jesus Christ: the country has a total 1,300 seminarians studying in different seminaries and new diocesan congregations are being formed. The Church in Myanmar, relies on young people in the work of evangelisation: lay Catholic catechists go to remote mountain villages where priests and religious cannot go. They stay a while with the people, spending time with the children in a spirit of love and friendship. When asked they share the faith. Many of them work in schools, dispensaries and other social works with the help of religious congregations. The Church intends to open new pastoral and vocational centres to give young people and education and formation on the meaning of life and to discover their own life vocation. Recently Salesians gave a retreat for 83 students at Yangon seminary. In agreement with the Archbishop the Salesians are drafting a youth pastoral plan which should be approved before the end of the year. In the meantime initiatives involving young people Catholics and non are multiplying: for example at the Don Bosco Vocational Centre in the diocese of Myitkyina there will be meetings on the meaning of life, relationship with God and the vocation of every person to life and love.
(Agenzia Fides 1/12/2005 Righe: 30 Parole: 305)