Manila (Agenzia Fides) - World Youth Day, to be held in Panama from 22 to 27 January, will be a "moment of extraordinary enrichment of faith" for young Filipinos. This is stated by over 70 young people who, together with Bishops and priests, left Manila for Panama. "It will be an experience of growth of faith for me", says to Fides Jeol Santiago, a young delegate. "We had been waiting for the event for months and we were looking forward to participating. I thank God for the gift of faith and all those who gave me the opportunity to participate in WYD", he says. Maria Cruz, a girl from the Philippine delegation, says: "I am grateful to God for this wonderful opportunity to participate in WYD. I am sure that I will learn so much and that I will receive many gifts of the Holy Spirit, thanks to the Pope and to the young people of the entire world".
Fr. Conegundo Garganta, Executive Secretary of the Episcopal Commission for the Youth of the Episcopal Conference of the Philippines, told Fides that "about 250 delegates from different parts of the Philippine archipelago will be present at the large youth gathering in Panama". According to Garganta, "WYD 2019 is an excellent opportunity to share faith and culture with other young people, as well as the liturgical celebrations and all the events scheduled for World Youth Day".
The Bishops Daniel Patrick Parcon of Talibon, Patrick Buzon of Bacolod, Antonio Tobias of Novaliches and Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila will be among the Filipino Bishops present at the event.
The Church in the Philippines has just proclaimed 2019 as the "Year of Youth", announcing also the National Youth Day which is held in 2019. As announced by the Episcopal Conference, the Year of Youth will end on November 24, 2019, as part of the "nine year journey for the New Evangelization" in preparation for the 500th anniversary of the arrival of the Christian faith in the Philippines (1521-2021). (PA) (Agenzia Fides, 19/1/2019)