The three Catholic parishes, The Assumption- Ruavatu, The Good Shepherd-Tenaru and The Christ the King- Tetere from the North East of Guadalcanal gathered at Christ the King Parish at Tetere on the 16th -19th of September. There were more than seven hundred youth who came together to be in fellowship with one another in prayers, sports and cultural integration.
The opening Eucharist celebration resided by His Grace Archbishop Adrian Thomas Smith sm was the highlight of the gathering. The theme “Planted and built up in Jesus Christ. Firm in the faith” (Col 2:7) was coincided with the World Youth Day held in Madrid, Spain 2011. His Grace spoke on the importance of being a good Catholic youth and their decision making and discernment for the next level of life must be rooted in Christ.
There were a few guest speakers for the gathering. “Liklik Money bigpela spak and liklik Marijuana bigpela imagination” was a catch line said by Fr Francis Phan, Parish Priest of Araimiri Parish and Councilor of Don Bosco Araimiri High School in PNG. He challenged the youth to be aware of the evil and danger that alcohol, money and sex can be in the lives of young people today. Benediction and Adoration were well prepared to strengthen them in their spiritual journey. A few young people were also invited to share their spiritual journeys and their encounter with the Lord along their path of life. Vocation awareness was also one of the main targets to help these youth to make choices for their lives. All the Catholic Religious Congregations were given the time to share their mission work with the youth.
The youth was also given the opportunity to immerse in their culture, sport and talents integration. Fr. Joseph Thanh, principal of Don Bosco Tetere RTC said that the young people expressed their desire to continue these gatherings annually. He also said that the program is aiming at helping the youth to renew their commitments and their contribution in building up their parishes through various activities.
The young people expressed their gratitude and appreciation to all the parish priests and especially to the Christ the King Parish of Tetere for hosting the inter-parish youth camp.