by Louie Pereira
NORTH ARABIAN VICARIATE, JULY 14, 2014: The working youth of the St. Therese Parish had an opportunity to make a wonderful retreat on, July 6, 2014 on the theme 'JOY'. It was organized by the Salmiya Parish Youth (SPY) core committee and animated by two vivacious Salesians; Fr. Clive Telles and Fr. Constantine (Tino) Fernandes from the Konkan province of India. The retreatants handed their cell phones as a sign of complete surrender. They were welcomed by the Parish Priest, Fr. Blany Pinto sdb who also thanked the core committee of SPY for organizing the retreat. It was followed by some action songs and a short guided meditation led by Fr. Tino.
Frs Clive and Tino then guided the youth as they unwrapped the gift of JOY through an understanding of JESUS, OTHERS and YOU. In the first sessions the participants were invited to discover the "YOU" in JOY, through self-introspection and group discussions. They moved on to exploring the role of "Others" in JOY by learning how to build meaningful and loving relationships with others through role plays and group activities. Finally, they touched upon "Jesus" as the source of all JOY and told them how sin could work as a barrier in their relationship with Jesus.
At the end of the session, each participant tied a yellow ribbon on the crucifix as a sign of letting go of the past and acknowledging God's unconditional love for them. The retreat ended with Holy Mass and the famous action song 'Chada' by the Goan band–'Faith' that had been fascinating the parish since the two priests came to town. A joyful Samantha Sequeira, remarked "This retreat has provided me the time and space for reflection. It has made us believe in ourselves", while Christopher D'souza, added "The retreat as a whole was an exuberant one and brought joy to everyone's heart."