MEETING OF THE ZACCARIAN YOUTH
DURING WORL YOUTH DAY
At the “Casa Italia”
Friday July 29, 2016 Crakow
Introductory Remarks by Giannicola M. Simone,
Director of the Office of Youth Ministry of the Barnabite Fathers
Good morning, Most reverend Father General and welcome to all of you.
You have in front of you our SAMZfollower from Brazil, Italy, Belgium and Poland.
This is the first time since World Youth Day 2013 in Rio de Janeiro that the Barnabite/Zaccarian Youth gather together to get to know each other and to live together the faith as indicated by our Founder, SAMZ.
Today’s meeting is the fruit of the efforts of many confreres and certainly the patience of many of our youth.
Some regions have had their own meetings: l’Enjuz for Latin America, the Providence Pilgrimage in Europe; we would like to create other opportunities in Asia and Africa.
We have youth who desire to be, do, and think, even when they are without a shepherd; they are youth that ask themselves what their future as adult Christians holds; they are youth who have the heart of our Barnabite Family, but they know little of the Angelic Sisters and know little of the Laity of St. Paul; they are youth who would like to see greater unity and communion in our work with them as religious; they are youth who have need of family, also of a Zaccarian family in this globalized world.
SAMZ, in Sermon V, speaks of the good of the passions when used properly.
These youth have good passions.
-faith, that prays with greater unity
-charity, that is expressed especially in voluntary service
-hope, revealed in the ability to think of the future with intelligence.
Most Reverend Father General, we will not cease to cultivate the “stupendous art of God” that is our youth, with the same passion that our Founder passed on to us.
Speech by the Most Reverend Father General
Francisco Chagas Santos da Silva
Good evening, it is good to be here,
We had some difficulties organizing this meeting but finally we succeeded.
I thought that by now tired by the youth days it would have been too much to have another meeting, so I thought to skip it, but Fr. Giannicola arranged this meeting here in “Casa Italia” and I am happy for that.
Some of you had already attended the meeting in Rio de Janeiro three years ago, today we have another opportunity for a common experience as Barnabite religious and you, young people.
In 2012, when I became Father General, we already started to work for the possibility of coordination between the youth of our ministries all over the world, in the 18 countries in which we are present. It is a work not only of communicating between you and us, but especially of cultivating a family spirit under the same spirituality and direction, that of SAMZ.
This work of coordination is not easy because there are many difficulties, not on the part of the youth, but often on the part of us religious that look more at our own little garden than to the good of the Congregation, we religious that often ask ourselves why we have to do something additional to our own local effort in order to seek the common good asked for by SAMZ.
We religious have to have the courage to take a step forward and let ourselves be spurred on by youths, such as yourselves.
Therefore our being here is the result of splendid work, beautiful, even if with great struggles; but the more we confront such struggles the more we will experience the grace of God and a sense of family.
Therefore, young Zaccarians, here, in Europe, in Asia, in Africa, in America, you can see in yourselves a true family together with us religious and feel welcome.
First of all a thank you to Fr. Geneal for his words.
Now let’s see if any of you have questions or advice to offer.
Madison, a youth from Belem:
Is there in this work together the possibility, or maybe it already exists, of an exchange among the youth from different places, not just to hear each other but also to do something in other places.
Yes, we are proposing communal action of youth from different territories. To create occasions of exchange among you is a desire that we want to realize as soon as possible.
Europe is already doing this with work in Albania, a spiritual and social work. In the past there were similar experiences in Africa that were then interrupted. To resume this work is truly important but also requires preparation time so that the communities and the local areas are ready to accommodate you.
There are already projects for Brazil either in Rio, or maybe Belem; let’s hope they can be quickly implemented.
To be Christians in Italy is not easy. In Rome it is difficult to gather other youth. Do you have some advice for our little community on Gianicolo?
The advice I can give you is always relative. It is true that in Europe the youth struggle to remain in the Oratory, in the Church, after Confirmation. What can we do?
It is important to maintain your witness, to continue to gather together, to reflect, to pray, even if you are few. To think of great numbers in Europe is unrealistic. You need to work with the little you have.
We want to ask the Father General what we need to be a Zaccarian Group. We have done little on the Zaccarian Spirituality, what do you expect form us?
Fr. General: I think it is better if Fr. Giannicola responds.
We ask that your experience of faith could become an experience also illuminated by the teachings of SAMZ where there be phases done together, steps taken together in which each makes their own contribution; in prayer, in action, in thinking.
But we will have the opportunity on Monday to deepen this sense of belonging.
I thank you for the question and for the steps we have already taken together.
For now we have to finish up, but before the official photo I would like to take the opportunity to thank:
The Father General for his availability and presence;
All the confreres of Warsaw for their work and the hospitality offered for a year here for all of us and you;
the confreres present with their youth, with which we have begun to work as a network: Let’s not quit working together; we need to for the good of the Congregation;
the Angelic Sisters here present, a significant sign for our young ladies;
the Daughters of Divine Providence.
We will conclude now, before the official photo, singing the Portuguese version of “Let you Run Like Madmen”, “Corremos comos loucos”.