Monday, October 8, 2012


by Mathias Hariyadi
It is a local version of the event launched by John Paul II in 1985. The days scheduled are from October 20-26 in Sanggau Diocese, in West Kalimantan. Each diocese will be represented by 100 youth, accompanied by priests and laity. A delegation of young people from neighboring Malaysia.

Jakarta (AsiaNews) - Catholics in Indonesia are preparing to celebrate the first edition of the Indonesian Youth Day (IYD), scheduled for October 20-26, 2012 in the diocese of Sanggau, province of West Kalimantan, the Indonesian part of Borneo Island, one of the most remote and secluded areas of the archipelago. The event will include at least 100 youth representing each of the 37 dioceses into which the country is subdivided, accompanied by priests and lay guides as heads of mission. There will also be a large and lively Malaysian delegation from Sabah and Serawak, the two states in Borneo under the administration of Kuala Lumpur.

For young people it is a historic event that marks the beginning of an event that will touch - every four years - all the dioceses in Indonesia. As emphasized by Katanalius, a Christian from Sanggau, it will take "another 148 years before the diocese can host another event like this." Even if he won't be able to be present in the first row in the celebrations "due to the large number of people," said the young man to AsiaNews, he added that "my heart will be united with the other young people of IYD."

The vast majority of participants will have to make a long trip to the diocese, called to host the days. The motto chosen for this first event - and already used for the XXVI World Youth Day in Madrid - is "Rooted and built up in Jesus Christ, firm in the faith" (Col 2:7), and is taken from a passage from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Colossians. Many activists and students have contributed to the organization of an event that will last six days and will focus on the value of life and the Catholic faith in the current social context, with particular reference to natives of the Kalimantan ethnic group.

The highlight will be the Mass, concelebrated by the bishops and priests present, plus moments of encounter, reflection and prayer. Events which address not only the Christian faith, catechism, the Gospel and mission, but also touch on current topics such as ecology, a sustainable world, cultural events and stories related to experiences of faith.

The day dedicated by the Indonesian Church to the youth is a local version of the international appointment launched by Pope John Paul II in 1985 and celebrated for the first time in Rome in March of the following year. The next round of World Youth Day is scheduled for the end of July 2013 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.


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