15/10/2012 19:28

Young people and the Year of Faith

By Fr. Srimal Priyanga SDB

What better opportunity is there to deepen our knowledge and understanding of the key themes of our faith than now! This is the Year of Faith which began on 11 October 2012 and concludes on the 24th November, 2013. Pope Benedict has urged us to ‘rediscover the joy of believing and the enthusiasm for communicating the faith’ (Porta Fidei no. 7). He described the programme of the Year as one in which ‘The Church as a whole and all her Pastors, like Christ, must set out to lead people out of the desert, towards the place of life, towards friendship with the Son of God, towards the One who gives us life, and life in abundance.’

The Holy Father tells us that professing our Catholic faith must lead to “public testimony and commitment.” The Church on the day of Pentecost demonstrates with utter clarity the public dimension of believing and proclaiming one’s faith fearlessly to every person” (Porta Fidei no. 9). It is important first to remember what “faith” is: It is both the content of what we believe and the act by which we give our total assent to the reality behind that content.

The Year of Faith is meant to promote the personal encounter with Jesus: This occurs most immediately in the Eucharist. Regular Mass attendance can strengthen one’s faith through the

Scriptures, the Creed, other prayers, the homily, receiving Communion and being part of a faith community. We must be able to invite friends for the Eucharistic celebration, especially those who have drifted from the faith or feel alienated from the Church.

The Sacrament of Reconciliation can play an important role in spiritual growth, because confession urges people to turn back to God, express sorrow for falling short and open their lives to the power of God’s healing grace.

Let us read the Bible every day during the Year of Faith in order to become more attuned to the Word of God. "The 'door of faith' (Acts 14:27) is always open for us, ushering us into the life of communion with God and offering entry into his Church”.

Let us learn about the saints, because they witness to us hope, and teach us how to live as Christians. They give us an example of service through ministry, charity, prayer and everyday life.  (TAVUR Newsletter – October 2012)

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