Nadiad (Agenzia Fides) – Young Indian Catholics are messengers of the Gospel in society and are actively involved in bringing Christ’s gaze to issues such as human dignity, poverty, addictions, youth problems, hostilities between ethnic and religious communities: says Fr. Chetan Machado, executive secretary of the National Youth Commission of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CCBI) to Fides. The Commission, together with the Indian Catholic Youth Movement (ICYM), organized the “Fourth National Youth Conference” in the Nadiad Pastoral Center in Gujarat, West India, in recent days. A total of 437 delegates from across the country attended this conference to share their faith and life experiences. The motto of the event was “Youth for a Synodal Church”. “The National Youth Conference is an important moment for the youth of our church: many topics are discussed every year and decisions are made, to help youth leaders and all those involved in youth ministry in India to guide young people to bring the Gospel to Indian society, so that righteousness, justice, peace and harmony may flourish”, adds Fr. Chetan Machado. “In different gatherings or in groups, the young people talk about their stories, dreams, hopes and expectations,” he says. The President of the Youth Commission of the Indian Bishops’ Conference, Bishop Soosai Nazarene of Kottar, celebrated the joint opening service and welcomed the participants of the conference, during which the President of the ICYM, Jyotsna D’Souza, presented the annual report. Fr. Stephen Alathara, Deputy General Secretary of the Bishops’ Conference, and Jesuit Father and human rights activist Cedrick Prakash, spoke in their presentations about the vocation and the task of young people in church and society. During the conference, the young people committed themselves to being “responsible citizens and promoters and protagonists of change” based on the fundamental right “to profess the faith and to remain united in promoting justice and peace and protecting Christian values”. (SD/PA) (Agenzia Fides, 6/5/2022)




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