From August 1-7, 2017, the Claretian youth of Taiwan (EAD) attended AEYG 2017+CF in Yogyakarta, Indonesia under the theme “Be Witnesses and Messengers of the Joy of the Gospel in Diversity.” This theme was in fact the continuation of the theme of the first AEYG-2015 “Meet Him in the Cloud”. Encountering God in the Cloud in 2015 inspired many young people to become the Witnesses and messengers of the joy of the Gospel in the diversity of the Asian Context. Seven participants from Taiwan attended the youth gathering in Yogyakarta. In spite of the language barriers and cultural differences, the enthusiasm and energy that emerged during the encounter really united the whole group into a clan of young people walking in the same road witnessing the joy of the Gospel in diversity.
During the encounter the general prefecture of the youth and vocation ministry Bro. Carlos cmf exhorted the young Claretians telling “The DNA of the Claretian Youth is to be the Witnesses and Messengers of the Joy of the Gospel in one’s own living contexts. It was also a moment of grace for the Claretian family as it fostered the spirit of brotherhood, joy of the Gospel and missionary passion as envisioned by our Founder St. Antony Mary Claret. We were also fortunate to attend the 7th Asian youth day closing mass at the Air Force compound of Yogyakarta on 6th August which gave a wider vision of the Catholic family to the young Claretians.
For the youth of Taiwan it was also an occasion to renew their friendship and love which they experienced in the first AEYG in Philippines. As the AEYG 2017came to an end I could see many of the young ones with the tears of pain of departure and a promise of smile in their face to meet each other again in the next AEYG 2019+CF in Timore Leste.
Thanks to the East Asian Delegate superior, Francisco Carin and all the council members for their encouragement and support to participate in this youth encounter. I also place a word of thanks to the Delegation of Indonesia-Timore Leste and the AEYG 2017+CF organizing committee for the meticulous planning and amazing execution of this event which will definitely remain as a unique experience in the hearts of all the young ones who participated in it.