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Catholic Youth to work for Church and society
May 22, 2012: More than 500 tribal youth converged at India’s Raipur for a Yesu Mahotsav (grand festival in celebration of Jesus) to know Christ better and understand one another. ‘Youth are the light of the world’ was the theme of the May 14-18 convention in the capital city of the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh.
National youth president, Olima Minj, said “youth want to do something for the Church and society. But don’t know from where to start. The convention provided a platform for the youth to know each other better and enrich their faith.”
Minj, who left her teacher’s job and plunged full-time into youth activities, said “the youth themselves had proposed the Mahotsav (grand festival).” “We want to connect with as many youth as possible. We want to renew them so that they in turn support the church and society.”
“Though Chhattisgarh is a small state, it is coming up well,” commented the former teacher of Holy Cross School.
The celebration focused on spirituality and vocational guidance. Many youth were happy to get to learn more about Jesus, especially in a state where there is religious persecution, with a pro-Hindu party ruling and Maoist menace.
Suman Ekka, the Chhattisgarh regional youth president. said,“by coming together from different dioceses, we have a good experience of coming to know one another.” “We got motivation to balance our secular life with spiritual life,” added the teacher in Nirmala Higher secondary school, Korba, Raipur archdiocese.
“In our (Christian) community, especially the girls are finding it difficult to get good partners. This gives an opportunity for them to find soulmates,” said Fr. Vimal Kishor Lakra, youth director of Ambikapur diocese.
Rinesh Rajan from Bhilai said, “We have learnt more about the Bible and values for our life.” The 12th standard student added, “The songs were also nice.”
Fr. Franklin D’Souza, the national youth director had the youth on their feet singing and dancing.