By Sem. Samuel Manalo
The Ateneo de Naga University Covered Courts were filled with the children and youth of different parishes, orphanages, and private and public schools for the 14th Youth and Children Mission Festival held last October 22, 2017, World Mission Sunday. The annual activity aims to inculcate to the young people the need “to participate in the mission of Christ for the good of the Church and society”. This year the theme was from the message of Pope Francis for World Mission Sunday: “Mission at the Heart of Christian faith.”
In his homily, Fr. James Cortez, Director of the Commission on Women and Children in Crisis, stressed the need for the heart to grow in love for the mission. In addition, before the final blessing, Most Rev. Rolando Tirona, O.C.D., D.D., Archbishop of Caceres, also gave a message.
The program started right after the Eucharistic Celebration. Guest speaker Ms. Mina Bermudo, from the Caceres Commission on Communications, spoke on spreading the Good News through Social Media. After her talk, Sem. Arnel Ricafrente talked about “INSTAGRAM” or how to post photos on social media that spreads the goodness of God.
In the afternoon, contests for poem writing, poster making and prayer writing were simultaneously held. Presentations from different schools and parishes followed after the short magic show. A Living Rosary was also observed. After the rosary, there was a quiz show and the awarding of prizes for the winners and certificates for participants.
The Caceres Lay Missionaries and the Conference of Caceres Seminarians were the main partners of the Archdiocese of Caceres Office for Mission and Evangelization in hosting the event.
Fr. Gerome Pelagio, current Director of the Caceres Office for Mission and Evangelization, gave the final message and blessing to the delegates in conclusion of the 14th Children and Youth Festival.