Sunday, October 24, 2010

Youth as the inspirational light: Youth Day at Kondadaba

Commemorating the Year of the Youth as declared by the United Nations, and continuing the Salesian tradition of imparting youth ministry skills to the Seminarians at St John’s Regional Seminary, Kondadaba, the annual Youth Day was held on October 24, 2010. A total of 148 young people from nearly 16 places visited by the Brothers on weekends for their ministry took active part in this one day programme. The whole programme, with the theme, Youth as the light of the world, was well planned and organized by the Youth Alive group members.

The day’s programme commenced with a well orchestrated stage presentation. The Chinese acrobats were the inspiration for this. After a prayer dance, the customary lighting of the lamp and words of welcome by one of the group members, the sessions for the day commenced. The chief resource person for the day was Br Vincent Castilino, who exhorted and challenged the young people to realize or frame their goal in life and have worthy role models who would inspire them in attaining their dreams. He communicated his insights using a mixture of games, songs and multimedia programme which kept the group awake and interested. The Youth Alive team members actively collaborated and added grace to the occasion by their dances and songs, all centred on the theme of the day.

Prior to lunch, the whole group was divided into ten groups (mostly according to their villages) and asked to prepare a short skit (of only two minutes) on any one of the issues that they would like to effect a change in. It was interesting as many of the groups pointed out significant areas where, as young people, they could take the initiative or lend a great support: blood donation, fund raising, counteracting peer pressure tactics… The idea of ‘paying forward’ in kind, the educational support they received from others was a novel ideal too. The day ended with them taking a pledge to do their bit in making this world, country, village a better place. Besides these there were several rounds of games, both indoors and outdoors – of course, the sudden heavy showers added greater thrill.

After the usual round of ‘thanks’ and distribution of prizes by Fr Wilson, the Principal, the youngsters were treated to a simple tea. As is customary with any mega event, the planning and preparation take longer time than the programme itself. This was totally and meticulously seen to by the Youth Alive team members, under the leadership of Br Satish (former leader) and Br Sagar (the present group leader). Much planning, hard work and team effort was visible from their part.

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