by Carissa Gudino
MUMBAI, February 3, 2014: On the 26th of January 2014, the Salesian Youth Fest on the theme ‘The Joy of the Gospel’ was held at Don Bosco Matunga, followed by an outreach activity to Shelter Don Bosco, Wadala.
About 180 youth from Salesian communities belonging to the Mumbai province gathered in the school primary hall for a praise and worship session animated by Fr. McEnroe and his group of dynamic youth from Dominic Savio, Wadala.
The comperes for the day, Glen D’Souza and Hazel D’Souza introduced the chief guest, Fr. Edwin D’Souza, who addressed the gathering with words of wisdom. Fr. Edwin inaugurated the Youth Fest by lighting the lamp along with Fr. Baptist Monteiro, Patrick Corda and two youth. The SYM Theme song was performed by the DBYS Volunteers. The youth were then acknowledged for their participation and were divided into groups to know each other better. After new groups were formed and the participants started conversing with each other, Resurrection Parish, Virar presented the theme song.
The theme song “Sing to the north and the south” set the tone for the input session, where the resource person Patrick Corda spoke on Pope Francis’ WYD message ‘I am God’s field’. Marina D’Costa, of the SYM Social and Political Group at DBYS, introduced Patrick to the crowd. Patrick spoke to the youth about being God’s field of faith. Through his testimony he spoke about vices, love for parents and self as well as self-transformation. He said change is personal, profitable but painful in order to change one needs to have a planned path and follow it. He encouraged the youth to spend quality time with their family and make scripture reading a part of their lives. He said ‘Youth are called to build the church and make a difference’.
After the enlightening session, Bibiana Estibeiro, of the SYM spiritual group, presented the annual report of the SYM – DBYS activities for the year 2012-2013 she also spoke about the upcoming events and urged all present to be a part of them. After the annual report she familiarised the group with Shelter Don Bosco. She spoke to them about the institute its aims and shared success stories of some of the inmates.
It was then time for the solemn Eucharistic celebration. The main celebrant was Fr. Vinay Kamath from Our Lady of Salvation Parish, Dadar. In his homily, he spoke to the youth about making choices and paying heed to God’s call.
It was then time for the outreach; the youth were divided into groups as they proceeded to Shelter Don Bosco where they were greeted by Fr. Jesu and his team. The DBYS volunteers conducted action songs, games, and gave out spot prizes to the boys.
The youth left with lots of pleasant memories of a day well spent... a day that was intellectually, spiritually as well as socially refreshing.