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Upcoming synod needs young

people’s voices -Pope Francis Pope Francis has asked young people to tell him, their bishops and pastors about their hopes and struggles and even their criticisms. As the Catholic Church prepares for a meeting of the Synod of Bishops focused on youth, the pope wrote a letter to young people saying the church wants “to listen to your voice, your sensitivities and your faith, even your doubts and your criticism. Make your voice heard, let it resonate in communities and let it be heard by your shepherds of souls.” The pope’s letter was released Jan. 13 as officials presented the preparatory document for the synod. The document includes a series of questions to be answered by national conferences of bishops and other church bodies. The responses, along with input from young people themselves, will form the basis of the working document for the synod. Pope Francis chose “Young people, faith and vocational discernment” as the theme for the 15th general assembly of the Synod of Bishops, which will be held in October 2018. Young people will have an opportunity to contribute to the working document by submitting reflections “on their expectations and their lives” through a dedicated website — — that will be launched the first week of May, according to Bishop Fabio Fabene, undersecretary of the Synod of Bishops. In his letter, Pope Francis used God’s call to Abraham as a model of God’s call to each believer. The patriarch, he said, “received a compelling invitation, a challenge, to leave everything and go to a new land. What is this ‘new land’ for us today, if not a more just and friendly society which you, young people, deeply desire and wish to build to the very ends of the earth?” “A better world can be built also as a result of your efforts, your desire to change and your generosity,” Pope Francis told young people. “Do not be afraid to listen to the Spirit who proposes bold choices; do not delay when your conscience asks you to take risks in following the Master.” The synod preparatory document offered three chapters for reflection by bishops and youths, which it defines as people roughly between the ages of 16 and 29: young people in today’s world; faith, discernment and vocation; and pastoral activity. Through the synod, the document said, “the church has decided to examine herself on how she can lead young people to recognize and accept the call to the fullness of life and love, and to ask young people to help her in identifying the most effective ways to announce the Good News today.” The church, it said, needs to evaluate its pastoral approach toward young people living in a rapidly-changing world where globalization, technological dominance, as well as economic and social hardships pose significant challenges to discovering their vocational path. “From the vantage point of faith, the situation is seen as a sign of our times, requiring greater listening, respect and dialogue,” the document said. A special focus of the synod, it said, will be “on vocational discernment, that is, the process by which a person makes fundamental choices, in dialogue with the Lord and listening to the voice of the Spirit, starting with the choice of one’s state in life.” Specifically for Christians, it said, the question is: “How does a person live the good news of the Gospel and respond to the call which the Lord addresses to all those he encounters, whether through marriage, the ordained ministry or the consecrated life?” Junno Arocho Esteves/Catholic News Service THE WORD OF THE LORD Gospel MT 4:12-23 When Jesus heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew to Galilee. He left Nazareth and went to live in Capernaum by the sea, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali, that what had been said through Isaiah the prophet might be fulfilled: Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles, the people who sit in darkness have seen a great light, on those dwelling in a land overshadowed by death light has arisen. From that time on, Jesus began to preach and say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” As he was walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon who is called Peter, and his brother Andrew, casting a net into the sea; they were fishermen. He said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him. He walked along from there and saw two other brothers, James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They were in a boat, with their father Zebedee, mending their nets. He called them, and immediately they left their boat and their father and followed him. He went around all of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and curing every disease and illness among the people. SURAT KI FATHER Dear Father, Ano po an boot sabihon kan “Year of the Parish, Community of Communities?” Minagalang, Roda Dear Roda, Iyan an tema para sa taon 2017 kan Simbahan digdi sa Filipinas. An boot sabihon kaini iyo, na an taon na ini ipinapanongod sa mga Parokya bilang sarong comunidad. An parokya katiriponan nin mga familia asin manlaen-laen na grupo nin mga paratubod. An magin sarong Simbahan iyo na magtalubo sa pagkasararo an mga parokyano, an mga familia. An modelo kaini iyo an mga enot na Cristianong comunidad sa Bagong Tipan (New Testament) kun saen an mga Cristiano naghihiras-hirasan kan saindang mga rogaring (hilingon sa Acts 2:35-42). Yaon man an pagkasararo sa puso asin isip. Saro sa realidad kan presenteng panahon iyo an pagkasuruhay o diaspora. Manlaen-laen an mga dahelan kaini; saro na digdi an pangangaipo materyal kan mga familia. Sa paghanap nin trabaho nagkakasuruhay an familia. Sa laog man kan mga banwaan asin simbahan, yaon man an pagkasuruhay kan mga tawo o familia huli kan rason pulitika, huli kan ideolohiya, huli kan man-iba-ibang kultura o ‘background’. Kun kaya sarong tunay na hamon an pagkasararo (communion). An Simbahan padagos na nag-aagyat na magkasararo an mga familia, makahimanwa tanganing magtarabangan; tanganing suportaran an pangangaipo kan lambang saro. An Simbahan mismo inaapod sa pagkasararo. Alagad an mga sugot kan presenteng panahon iyo an ‘indifference’ -ugali nin daing pakiaram; siring man an ‘selfishness’ -pagkamakasadiri. Padagos kitang pinapagiromdom na dai malingaw na kita miyembro nin comunidad. Kaya kaipuhan man na magtabang kita, maghiras man kita kan satong panahon asin kakayahan para sa comunidad orog na sa mga tugang niatong nangangaipo. An mga calamidad, halimbawa pakatapos kan bagyo, bako na boot niato na tamaan kita nin bagyo, kundi na -an pangangaipo kan satong kapwa nagtatao sato nin oportunidad tanganing magluwas sa sadiring natad, tanganing mag-anduyog sa kapwa. Ini okasyon sa pagpatalubo nin comunidad. Nagigiromdoman ko an sarong awit: ‘Daing sisay man an nabubuhay para sa sadiri lamang.’ An sarong ‘focus’ kaining Year of the Parish iyo an inaapod na BEC or Basic Ecclesial Communities. Ini mga saradit na comunidad na grupo nin mga 8 o sampulong familia na nagtitiripon sa pagpangadie, pagtarabangan, pati na sa paghimo nin mga livelihood projects. Sarong apod kaini: saradit na simbahan. Igua na nin mga modelo kaini sa ibang parokya. Sa modelo kan BEC mas hararom an pagkamidbid kan lambang saro sa kapwa; igua nin okasyon nin pag-urulay asin paghiras kan mga ekperiensya sa pagbuhay asin magin sa pag-familia; igua nin pagkakataon na magtarabangan o bayanihan. Orog na namimidbidan kan Cura Parroco an saiyang mga parokyano; siring man an mga lideres namimidbidan an saindang mga miyembro. Alagad igua pa nin ibang mga grupo sa laog kan parokya arog baga kan lay organizations, movements asin associations. Ini man kabali sa pangapodan na magin sarong comunidad. Kabali digdi an paghingowa na madagdagan pa an partisipasyon asin an inaapod na ‘empowerment’ kan mga parokyano. Haloy nang pangitorogan kan Simbahan na an mga parokyano bako sanang magin paradalan kundi mga aktibong partisipante sa buhay kan parokya asin sosyedad; na mamatean kan mga parokyano na sinda parte kan parokya. Ining Year of the Parish parte kan pag-andam para sa taon 2021, an ika-500 taon kan pag-abot kan pagtubod Cristiana digdi sa Filipinas. Kabtang man ini kan padagos na trabaho nin ebangelisasyon. Lugod, orog pang magkaboronyog an mga asosasyon, organisasyon, movimientos, manlaen-laen na grupo, asin mga familia sa laog kan parokya. Maponan man lugod an pagmukna nin mga saradit na comunidad o BECs sa satong mga parokya. Salamat. Maogmang bagong taon saimo. Minagalang, Father

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