20th YFC Regional Conference in Tagum
“I declare God’s greatness!” This line inspired the 961 young people from five provinces of Davao Region, who gathered to revive their Catholic faith at the Youth for Christ’s 20th Regional Youth Conference (RYC) in Tagum City National High School, on October 28-29, 2017. Themed “Fight the Good Fight of Faith” from 1Timothy 6:12, various activities, sports and creative competitions were represented by different provinces to showcase their talents.
Participants were given the chance to choose a workshop from ten prepared for them to nurture the genuine identities of a youth serving Christ. One of which was the “You Speak”, where 182 participants chose as their speaker, Fr. Jomarie Salvosa. Fr. Salvosa discussed the basic concepts of the Roman Catholic Church, such as the elements, faith of the church and catechism. According to him, it is essential for us to appreciate Catholic faith by understanding where we truly belong.
Roots of faith
Fr. Hernan Reyes presided over the first Holy Eucharist of the conference before sessions started. He imparted in his homily that as people of the church, we are not meant to be hunkered down, but we are meant to be spread out.
In session 1, Tito Caloy and Tita Dodot Espregante talked about ‘4 Cardinal Virtues’ such as Justice, Prudence, Temperance and Fortitude. It is said that these virtues supplement our moral values and these remind the youth to stand out from the worldly lures.
Moreover, Fr. Marbendear Morallas enlightened the delegates, in his session, where he tackled about the basic elements of Catholic faith through a discussion on the revelation, birth and life of the church.
“The Roman Catholic faith is rooted not only from the Holy Bible, but also from the sacred traditions, though not written down but passed on from generation to generation,” Fr. Morallas said.
Sharers of the session inspired the crowd to be firm in declaring their faith as Roman Catholics despite of the struggles they encountered. These are instances that once the Lord calls one, He will be consistent in calling him/her.
Everyone is gifted
Auxiliary-Bishop George Rimando of the Archdiocese of Davao, presided over the celebration of the mass to start the second day.
In his homily, Bishop Rimando said each one is gifted with a capacity to love, since Jesus loved us first. He added that one cannot declare that Jesus is within him/her without allowing the love of Jesus to grow within him/her by loving others.
“To love those who are difficult to love is an indication of genuine love,” said Kuya Gerol del Pilar who culminated the conference during the session 3.
In today’s context, the world needs young disciples like Timothy who defended his faith like a missionary fighter. “Let us embrace the call of God so that we can declare more”, he said.
The RYC 2017 ended with each personally declaring commitment on God’s love and mercy, recommitting to YFC advocacies and teachings of the Catholic Church, through their thumb marks on their conference kits as led by Kuya Dennis Alias, provincial youth head of Davao City.
The YFC Regional Youth Conference (RYC) happens every two years. It is a weekend conference where the YFC members’ faith can be spiritually nourished through the experiences offered during the event. (Nath Mindanao | YFC-Davao City)