Saturday, February 28, 2009

Juventutem News

The Faederatio Internationalis Juventutem is reporting that they recently held their 2nd international meeting in Switzerland.

Here are the relevant excerpts.

Report on the Second gathering of the International Federation Juventutem in Bern, Switzerland, February 21-22, 2009 (www.juventutem.org).

For the second time, representatives from Juventutem groups in various countries have met in Bern, Switzerland, on February 21st and 22nd, 2009.

The schedule was similar to the one last year. Over twenty Juventutem members had travelled to Switzerland for the occasion. They came from France, England, Ireland, Slovakia, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Spain, of course Switzerland, and even Russia. Like last year, the aim was not to have many people, but rather to ensure diversity of representation.

The gathering officially started with Holy Mass at 3pm at the Villa Maria. Juventutem Ecclesiastical Assistant Fr Armand de Malleray offered a votive Mass of Saint John Bosco, Patron of Catholic Youth. In English and in French Fr de Malleray drew a parallel between St John Bosco’s time and ours, reminding us that the great apostle of Turin had had to overcome all sorts of suspicion and of opposition as the government accused him of working for the Vatican against the new regime set up by the Piedmont-Savoy sacrilegious monarch. King Victor-Emmanuel of Piedmont-Savoy had indeed invaded the Pontifical States, putting all Catholic clergy loyal to the Sovereign Pontiff in a very delicate situation. Despite the most obvious value of St John Bosco’s apostolates for the education of the youth and of the clergy, shaping young men into good and trustworthy subjects when so many others were falling into illegality and vices, these worthy initiatives were often hindered by civil authorities. This did not prevent the saint from working wonders at the service of God. Fr de Malleray said that current anti Catholic prejudice could sometimes discourage us in the XXIst century. However he added, we should be certain that God’s almighty grace could help us bare abundant fruit and achieve great things for his Reign - if only union with God was our essential and constant goal. Thomas Balsis from Lithuania served the Low Mass, which was concluded by the singing of the Marian antiphon “Ave Regina Coelorum”.

[...]

We then went back into the chapel for exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and adoration, served by Damian Barker, from England. It was a wonderful moment, all of us gathered before the Lord, fulfilling a very essential dimension of Juventutem’s spirituality centered on Eucharistic devotion, both through the Mass and through adoration, as depicted in our logo. After having exposed the Blessed Sacrament, Fr de Malleray recessed in the sacristy to hear confessions while we adored. He then came back and led us in praying a decade of the Rosary asking for strength and protection for the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI. He reminded us of the fact a novena was currently being prayed all over the world for the Holy Father, ending the day after, on the Feast of the Chair of St Peter. We also presented to God the intentions of all Juventutem groups and supporters all over the world.

[...]

On Sunday morning 22 February we all met again at Holy Trinity Church for Holy Mass. Like last year the Secretary to the Papal Nunciature attended our Mass in choir. Mgr Ruiz Mainardi had been assigned at the Papal Nunciature in Cuba, but his successor was equally pleased to pray with us. Unlike last year though, for want of available clerics, we had a Sung Mass and not a Solemn High Mass. It was served by male members of Juventutem from various countries, while others – boys and girls alike – joined in the schola to sing the Gregorian kyriale and proper of the Quinquagesima Sunday. Fr de Malleray offered the Mass and preached on Juventutem. He quoted Pope Benedict’s homily at Randwick on the last WYD in Sydney, and also Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos’ letter of support to the International Juventutem Federation last year.

[...]

Watch for photos on this, either in this post as an update, or in a different post.

This raises the matter again of Juventutem. It would be very good for priests (or local laity) to consider starting a local Juventutem chapter.

This is particularly so for a situation where the usus antiquior is being offered at a chapel (i.e. outside a parish setting), as it can be a way to help build up groups more akin to what would be found within a normal parish setting, and one particularly directed toward young adults.

But it would also be good for parishes which have started to offer the usus antiquior, in order to provide a good outlet for young adults to come together in a parish. This not only provides a good social outlet which youth often particularly desire, but is a venue to pursue liturgical catechesis, organize pilgrimages, and promote our venerable Roman liturgical traditions and so forth. It can also be a means to help that group take an active role within the life of the parish. Give it some consideration.