From Thursday 7th to Saturday 9th March the joint meeting of the national delegates for Youth Ministry and Universities of the European Bishops´ Council was held at the headquarters of the Italian Bishops’ Conference.
Organised by the Secretariat and by the Youth Commission of the CCEE, this meeting saw the participation of over 50 delegates and appointed representatives of two of the sections of this commission coming from all over Europe to reflect and share their views on the accompaniment of young people in the light of the Synod of Bishops on the Youth and after the recent World Youth Day in Panama.
The meeting started with a greeting from Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, Archbishop of Genoa and President of the CCEE; a greeting from Monsignor Jean-Claude Hollerich, Archbishop of Luxembourg and President of the Youth Commission; and a greeting also from Monsignor Marek Jędraszewski, Archbishop of Krakow and head of the University Section.
Three reports on the Synod and two on World Youth Day, that you can find attached, and the large amount of time given for debates between the participants, have allowed the laying of foundations for common work with the youth in the light of the two big moments of lived thanks and the results of the final document from the Synod. Father Michele Falabretti, head of the Service of the Italian Youth Ministry revisited and spoke about “The preparation and the days of the Synod. Novelty of this meeting”. Doctor Paul Metzlaff, delegate of the department for the German youth ministry, was asked to speak about “The young protagonists of the Synod. Their participation in the works”. Father Giacomo Costa S. I., special secretary of the Synod on the youth presented, “The final document. Analysis and perspectives on the future”. The huge numbers of participation among the Polish youth at World Youth Day gave an occasion for Father Emil Parafiniuk, head of the Polish youth ministry, to relive the days in Panama speaking on “You are not the future, but the ´now´ of God. Pope Francis and the youth in Panama”.
While Father João Chagas, head of the Youth Office and the Dicastery for the laity, family and life, traced a path to unite together both the big events and ordinary life speaking on “After World Youth Day. Youth ministry and daily life”.
At the conclusion of the work, it was announced that the new European Symposium on the Youth is to be celebrated in Krakow from the 20th until 23rd October 2020, in the centenary year of the birth and on the day of the liturgical feast of Saint John Paul II – 22nd October.
After Barcelona in 2017, as a European moment of preparation for the youth Synod, the Symposium in Krakow aims to be an occasion to carry out the indications of the Synod and to illuminate the post-synod Apostolic Exhortation that Pope Francis will sign on the 25th March.1