Issued by the Catholic Center for Studies and Media - Jordan. Editor-in-chief Fr. Rif'at Bader - موقع أبونا

Published on Wednesday, 10 July 2024
Indonesian Catholic Church sets new directions for youth engagement
The National Plenary Meeting of the Indonesian Youth Commission (Komkep), convened in June, has outlined a series of innovative strategies aimed at deepening the Catholic Church’s engagement with young people.

LiCAS News :

The meeting, hosted at the Indonesian Bishops’ Conference (KWI) headquarters in Jakarta and themed “Embrace and Grow Young Catholics for a Viral and Vital Church,” was attended by representatives from all 37 diocesan youth commissions, totaling 63 participants.


Drawing inspiration from Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation “Christus Vivit,” the plenary centered its discussions around two pivotal actions: embracing and growing. The youth commission aims to foster a Church that is both ‘vital,’ influencing society positively, and ‘viral,’ spreading the Christian message dynamically.


The strategies discussed include improving pastoral care and creating more inclusive environments that address the practical and spiritual needs of young Catholics. The plenary acknowledged the successes of recent initiatives such as the Indonesian Youth Day III in Palembang and participation in the World Youth Day Lisbon 2023, which have contributed to a rejuvenated approach to youth ministry.


The plenary also recognized ongoing challenges such as mental health issues, job scarcity post-pandemic, environmental concerns, and the pervasive influence of digital technology on the youth. The delegates agreed that these challenges necessitate a renewed commitment to involving the Holy Spirit in guiding the Church’s youth initiatives.


A key outcome of the plenary is the call for companions to young Catholics to embody a spirit of openness and collaboration, fostering environments where young people can feel genuinely involved and valued. This includes creating opportunities for young people to lead and participate actively in Church and community activities, ensuring they have the space to express their faith and concerns authentically.


It also highlighted the importance of continuous self-evaluation among youth leaders and companions to ensure that the Church remains responsive to the changing landscapes of young people’s lives. Training and resources will be focused on equipping leaders with the skills to engage effectively with digital media, ecological advocacy, and mental health issues, reflecting a holistic approach to youth ministry.


Financial strategies were also discussed, with an emphasis on collaborative funding models that involve various Church bodies and external partners to sustain and expand youth-oriented programs.


The plenary concluded with a strong endorsement of the Church’s mission to nurture a vibrant, engaging, and supportive community for all young Catholics. It reiterated the call from Pope Francis to listen genuinely to the youth, making them central to the Church’s mission and evangelization efforts.