MADRID, AUGUST 18, 2011: As the World Youth Day has been steadily unfolding, the Salesian Youth Movement had its special day as Rev. Fr. Fabio Attard, sdb and Rev. Sr. Ma del Carmen Canales, fma, both Counsellors of the Department of Youth Ministry for the respective congregations convened a Mini-Forum of SYM representatives of the Salesian World. There were about two hundred participants spanning the world from Africa, America, Asia-Oceania, Europe and Rome.
The purpose of the Mini-Forum was to introduce the SYM representatives to the elements of Salesian Youth Spirituality. Fr. Attard and Sr. Canales gave a theoretical framework for the same. They emphasized five basic elements of Salesian Youth Spirituality, namely, Spirituality of Ordinary Life which invites the young to recognize the presence of God in their daily lives; Spirituality of Joy and Optimism; Spirituality of friendship with Jesus; Spirituality of Communion in the Church; and Spirituality of Responsible Service.
This was followed by a youthful mute role-play which depicted a contrast between youngsters who blow life away with their wrong choices, and those who are directed by the Spirit. This created a platform for the SYM representatives to deepen their reflections as they met in groups to answer three questions that revolved around their sharing their journey in the Salesian Youth Movement and how the movement has helped them personally. Another area was of their personal experience of Christ, and the third concerned identifying one urgent problem and what concrete step the SYM in every country could undertake to make their societies better.
Following this, the Mini Forum was graced with the presence of Rev. Fr. Pascual Chavez, Rector Major of the Salesian Congregation and Rev Mother Ivonne R. Mother General FMA. Both the Major Superiors addressed the forum encouraging the SYM to take root the world over. After this, time was set apart for open questions from the representatives of the SYM, to which the Rector Major responded with profound insight and heart rending inspiration. The forum ended on a very hopeful note for the expansion and rootedness of the Salesian Youth Movement in Salesian Youth Spirituality.