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News Chennai Province (INM)

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Youth Ministry Camp Held in Chennai
By Mani Lazar SDB
Chennai, May. 12. A nine-day Youth Ministry Exposure camp was held in Chennai, May 1-9, 2017 for the students of Philosophy from Salesian College, Yercaud. The course was organized by the Don Bosco Youth Empowerment Services (DBYES) under the leadership of Fr. Mani Lazar, the Provincial Youth Director. Every day, after well-planned Input sessions at the Citadel, the participants were sent to different youth centres, oratories and parishes in Chennai for hands-on training and field experience with youth groups.
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Fr. Mani Lazar SDB took sessions on the process (Encounter, Encourage and Empower) and place of Youth Ministry (Parish, College and Oratories) and the preventive system in the Youth Ministry (Being There, Aware and Care). Fr. Antony Christy SDB took the session on Educative Pastoral Community (EPC) and Salesian Educative Pastoral Plan (SEPP). After these sessions, the participants were asked to create a model EPC and SEPP for a Salesian community. Fr. Deva Joe, the Youth Pastoral Delegate and Vice Provincial of Chennai Province, took the sessions on networking of Youth Pastoral Team (YPT) of the province.  Fr. John Christy took a session on the networking of the provincial animation centres for youth ministry. Bro. Clement took the participants to the Rajiv Gandhi National Institute of Youth Development (RGNIYD), at Sriperumbudur, for an exposure to Youth Ministry at National Level. It was a good experience where our brothers had an opportunity to know about State and Central Governments` policies and schemes for youth development in the country.
We also had interactive sessions with the leaders of various secular Youth Groups and Movements. Mr. Shanmugasundaram, from Uthirathin Uravugal (Education, health and food), Mr. Danial from Jesus Youth, Mr. Avinash from Shadows of Jesus (a lay spiritual movement), Mr. Arun from Makhal Pathai (a People`s Movement), Mr. Prbhakar from Nammal Mudium ( a Social Movement). Mr. Moiesan from Nazhaya Tamizhagam (a Political Movement) animated the participants. This experience was an eye-opener for the participants. They were inspired by the sense of commitment displayed by various groups of youngsters in championing various causes in society. Fr. Andrews Raja SDB took the session on models of youth ministry and the social responsibility of the Youth Minister.

The camp ended with an open discussion with the Province Youth Council (representatives of various youth groups from the province). These youngsters shared their experience and difficulties of being and working together as a Salesian Youth Movement. They also challenged the young Salesians through their reflective questions.

We express our sincere thanks to the communities of The Citadel, Ayanavaram, Basin Bridge, Broadway), Vyasarpadi and Perambur for accommodating our Brothers during these days of the camp. The Brothers in their evaluation expressed that this Youth Exposure Camp was a wonderful opportunity for them to know the practical side of the youth ministry in the province and to enrich themselves with the knowledge and tools for a more effective Youth Ministry in the near future. We appreciate these young Salesians for their active participation during the camp and wish them all success in the future.

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