The Episcopal Commis-sion on Youth (ECY) is inviting young people and youth leaders from dioceses all over the country to take part in a gathering of youths to
celebrate National Youth Day (NYD) 2002 in Ormoc City, Leyte, with a four-day program of festivities from November 28 to December 1.
National Youth Day is traditionally celebrated by the Philippine
Church on December 16, with the objective of affirming the Church's solidarity with the Filipino youth. For the past four years, the ECY has held a national assembly for youths on a schedule close to
this date. The activity is especially designed to be a journey of faith for the delegates, an experience of living as pilgrims of the NYD – to be part of a community of young apostles.
The event will be
hosted this year by the Archdiocese of Palo, and the venue will be the Sts. Peter and Paul parish in Ormoc City. The theme echoes that of the 17th World Youth Day held in Toronto, Canada last July:
"You are the salt of the earth…you are the light of the world" (Matthew 5:13-14).
ECY is extending the invitation to 20 youth and youth leaders, 16 to 35 years of age, from each ecclesiastical
territory. Additional delegates may be requested, and will be accepted depending on the initial turn-out of the registration and on a first-come-first-served basis. The deadline for registration
is on October 31.
Archbishops and Bishops have been requested to support their delegates, giving priority especially to more mature youth and youth leaders from their respective arch/dioceses. It is hoped
that the delegates will return to their communities "overf-lowing with the richness of the NYD encounter to want to echo the experience to the youth in their respective localities (diocese, parish, youth
organization) con-cretely through similar celebrations.
The activities begin in the morning of November 28 with the registration and assignment of delegates to their foster parents. A welcome program is
scheduled in the afternoon at the Ormoc City Superdome, featuring Bible enthronement, animation, "getting-to-know-you" activities and cultural presentation. The Governor of Leyte will also be present to
welcome the delegates, followed by an orientation and Opening Mass to be presided by Palo Archbishop Pedro R. Dean.
The first part of the theme "You are the salt of the earth", will be discussed at
length during the catechesis on the second day, followed by a film showing on the Ormoc Flashflood, a community immersion, and Youth Festival by region.
The third day features a continuation of the discussion of the theme, "You are the light of the world."
Other activities for this day include the Eucharistic Celebration, Community Journey and Youth Vigil.
The celebration ends on December 1, the first Sunday of Advent, with a Concluding Mass to be presided
by Malolos Bishop Rolando J. Tria Tirona, O.C.D., chairman of the CBCP-Episcopal Commission on Youth.
Each delegation from a diocese or an organization is advised to bring: one seedling for tree planting
activity, a delegation banner and local delicacies of their place for offertory during the Opening Mass. Delegations are also enjoined to coordinate with their respective regional youth coordinating councils
in preparing for the cultural presentation per region.