AMERICA/BRAZIL - Youth and migrants: the response of the Church of Belem on the path towards the 2019 Synod

Monday, 29 October 2018 synod of bishops   youth   migrants   amazon  


Belem (Agenzia Fides) - A big center for youth Pastoral care, where promoting human and integral formation of young people, is the response of the diocese of Belem, one of the great metropolises of the Amazon, to the great challenges that the youth world poses to the pastoral care of the church. Yesterday the Synod of Bishops dedicated to young people concluded at the Vatican, providing new perspectives for the future work of evangelization, whose first significant step will be the Synod of Bishops for the Amazon, which will be held in October next year.
Commenting on one of the themes of the Synod's preparatory document, which refers to the Church's responses to the challenges of urban pastoral care in the Amazon, the Auxiliary Bishop of Belem, Mgr. Antonio de Assis Ribeiro, SDB, in an interview with Agenzia Fides underlines that "in the big metropolises of the Amazon many problems converge, for example, the great challenges of the countryside". At a local level "the challenge of child and youth crime, the problem of prostitution, drug trafficking" emerge.
In this perspective, the Bishop emphasizes to Fides that "in relation to this block of challenges, the archdiocese of Belem has a pastoral plan for youth, divided into seven main areas, with different lines of action and strategies, for an effective response to these problems". Mgr. Assis, who is a Salesian, therefore accustomed to the contact with young people, stresses that this work is carried forward "through the promotion of processes of evangelization capable of integrating sports, leisure, culture, entertainment, moral formation and spiritual accompaniment". This is realized in "a big center for youth Pastoral care, an environment in which we want to promote the human and integral formation of young people, through coexistence, moral formation, professional training and the deepening of the meaning of life".
Together with the challenges of the youth world, the Auxiliary Bishop of Belem points out "the problem of migration to Fides, as we find ourselves with a significant number of Venezuelan natives and also of other countries". This is why the work of the Migrant Pastoral are and a special Commission for the discussion on the issue of migration is of particular importance. "Through Caritas we meet every month and we already have a specific action plan for this situation", he explains. According to Mgr. De Assis Ribeiro, however, it is a situation that "goes far beyond the ecclesial forces, we also need an intervention by the municipal, state and federal government, we are trying to collaborate". (LMM) (Agenzia Fides, 29/10/2018)