|Youth Commission’s strategic plan 2012-14 – Oct 2|
The Church has officially embarked upon addressing its second pastoral priority.
All parishes, departments, religious congregations, ecclesial communities, prayer groups and organisations are on red alert (or should be) as the Catholic community tries to wrap its mind and heart around a call that must become a priority for all.
The Youth Commission recognises the seriousness of this challenge and encourages all youth and young adults to engage themselves fully with the rest of the Catholic family as it strives to understand what it would take to revitalise Catholic culture and identity.
Our priority invites us to revitalise something. That something is Catholic culture and identity. Archbishop Edward J. Gilbert wrote recently there is a “new world culture” which is affecting everyone and everything.
Culture can be defined as that complex whole which involves our response to all things: religion, food, family, music, art, relationships, laws, rites of passage etc. This “new world culture” has penetrated our Church, causing Catholic culture to be sidelined, trivialised, neglected and even rejected, especially by our youth, who are heavily influenced by agents of the “new world culture”, such as the Internet, media and the entertainment industry.
When a new culture begins to penetrate another, three things could happen:
The first two are bad for the Church. The Church though, must be applauded when it asked last year “What does it mean to be Catholic?” That was a question about Catholic culture, what we do, and who we are. Culture therefore, defines us and gives us our identity. The question that must be answered is: “What is the primary mission of the Church?” Its culture and identity should be at one with her mission.
The mission of the Church is simple and unambiguous, it emanates directly from the risen Christ: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” (Mt 28:19). That mission is articulated in many of the Church’s writings, both ancient and modern.
The Youth Commission will continue revitalising Catholic culture and identity by embracing three watchwords: Encounter, Formation and Mission. Our brand of comprehensive youth ministry is Youth EFM – Youth on Encounter, Formation and Mission.
Our strategic plan for 2012-2014 will provide details for this longterm initiative. In the short term, the Commission will challenge the youth to revive participation in Catholic feasts and customs e.g. All Saints, etc., and encourage them to consider creating a prayer corner or altar for family prayer in their homes. – Catholic Youth Commission