Bridging Borders: Youth Camps in Cameroon and Sri Lanka Promote Unity and Spiritual Growth

Apr 19, 2024 | Youth & Vocations Ministry, Cameroun, St. Joseph Vaz

In response to the general dream and vision of the Congregation, and to the specific dreams of the different organisms concerning youth animation and closeness to young people, the Congregation has not only encouraged the formation of youth movements, but has also paved the way for these young people to meet at different levels to promote their educational and spiritual growth. 

From 11 to 14 April, young people from the Littoral and Southwest Regions of Cameroon gathered in the halls of Saint John Mary Vianney Parish in Beedi Malangue for the 3rd edition of their annual camp.  

Under the theme “You killed the one who leads to life, but God raised him from the dead – and we are witnesses” (Acts 3:15), the meeting brought together over 36 participants from four parishes: St Agnes Parish of Kosala, St Dominic Parish of Munyenge, St Gregory the Great Parish of Ndobo and the host parish of St John Mary Vianney of Beedi.

Throughout the camp, the young people took part in various activities aimed at promoting their educational, spiritual and social development. An inspiring debate entitled “Youth are more socialism than spirituality in our Church today” provided a platform for intellectual discourse and introspection, while traditional dances and choral music showcased the creative talents and cultural heritage of the participants.

The camp culminated in a solemn Holy Mass presided over by Fr. Moses Moumassou, CMF, Prefect of Youth and Vocations in Cameroon. He warmly invited them to participate actively in the next National Claretian Youth Camp, which will take place in the parish of Saint Gregory the Great in Ndobo, Douala.

Claret-Way Youth Encounter at Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka 

Likewise, In a heartfelt expression of cultural exchange and friendship, the Claret-Way Youth Encounter took place in Polonnaruwa and Maduruoya, Sri Lanka, from 23 to 25 February. This momentous event, which brought together 50 young people from both Claretian and non-Claretian parishes, focused on the theme “A step towards peace and reconciliation in Sri Lanka”.

Fr. Joseph Jeyaseelan CMF, the Delegation Superior, began the cultural evening with a message that set the tone for the evening’s festivities. Vibrant Tamil and Sinhala cultural performances filled the day, showcasing the rich diversity of Sri Lankan tradition. Participants shared food unique to their cultures, dressed in traditional attire, and engaged in conversations that bridged language barriers.

To add a touch of physical and environmental wellness to the gathering, yoga exercises led by Bro. Rojes CMF boosted the youth, while a collective effort to remove plastics and polyethene from a designated area of Sallaithivu beach highlighted a commitment to environmental stewardship and social responsibility.

Jesica, President of Claret-Way, along with Fr. Jenis CMF, captivated the audience with a comprehensive presentation detailing the history, purpose and activities of Claret-Way Youth. 

As the event progressed into a lively campfire, the youth took the opportunity to deepen friendships and foster unity through shared experiences. Dance performances, including those by the talented youth of Maduruoya, further lifted the spirits, transcending cultural boundaries and reaffirming the power of solidarity.

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