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Jan 7, 2015 Written by  Peter Akera

Are the Youth living their spiritual calling? Be the first to comment!

For the past years, I have attended different youth programs and it always puzzles me on how the youth respond. This is disheartening because unlike other secular programs, the church programs are always pushed to the wall. I have for example attended Naguru Deanery Youth Day, Naguru Deanery Youth Conference and Mbuya Parish Youth Conference.

What is very clear is that our young people are not sure if they are the ones to call youth. When I attended the planning meeting for Deanery Youth Day, the organizers planned for about 300 youth from all the five parishes that forms Naguru Deanery. But, to my surprise, the turn up was really very shocking. This is because out of the estimated 300 youth, only about 70-80 youth turned up. In the other Naguru Deanery Youth Conference   and Mbuya Parish Youth Conference, I literally saw almost the same turn up of youth yet when planning, the budget is usually fat considering a big number.

Now, what I don’t understand is, if our young people really know that they are youth. This is because when I look at all the four masses in our parish, Mbuya parish alone, the youth according to me are about 70-80% of the whole congregation. This logically means that if 500 people attend each mass, then about 300 are youth for each mass in Mbuya parish leave alone sub-parishes. But you can wonder why there is such a low turn-up for youth programs. Should we blame all these on poor leadership, poor coordination, and poor mobilization? Or should we blame this on our parents for not giving their children opportunity to attend such programs, or we blame the youth themselves for not making it their responsibility to work on their spiritual needs? To me, all the categories above are to blame.

Poor leadership/cordination

I would consider poor leadership a big hindrance because poor organization from the top goes down to poor mobilization of the youth. What I know is that youth are very active people if they are well informed about a program.

Another thing which is also giving us a blow is that our leaders seem to have served for a very long time and need a break through. Therefore, we should think of fresh minds in these offices and if possible there should be a term limit in office so that people do not serve endlessly.

And importantly, the youth leaders ought to have it in mind to think about what can bring the youth together. They say a leader is a reader. This doesn’t only mean reading news, articles, the books from schools, novels and so on, but it means reading the minds of the peoples you lead and being able to understand what they expect you to deliver to them.  In other words, leaders should be creative enough to look for activities that can attract and bring the youth together.

Parents

Our parents in many occasions have contributed a lot towards poor youth turn up. For example, a parent may decline giving his or her child money to attend different youth programs hence hindering their attendance. At times, the parents even directly decide to stop their children. It is more worrying that these same parents go ahead and instead easily give their children money if there is anything like concerts. And I keep asking myself, will these parents regret one day for not showing their children the right way to go? In fact, will they regret not showing them the right path? I know parents are a wealth of knowledge.   With the common saying that, ‘you reap what you sow’. When parents invest in the spiritual lives of the children, they not only prepare them to be exemplary people who will be responsible people; but, they are bound to enjoy the happiness their children will bring. And this comes because the parents would have shown them the right thing and the right way to go spiritual.

Youth

We youth have ourselves to blame for becoming very careless that we don’t care about our spiritual life. When there is a program and youth are requested to pay, we most often say we cannot afford. But, if there is a concert at Lugogo, Namboole, or elsewhere, we make sure the money is in our account in advance or even two months before the concert. This implies that we like worldly things more than our spiritual callings. But, it is our responsibility to take care of ourselves.

We all need to start being active Christians who are ready to own the activities of the church. Should we simply sit and pray and keep waiting for any automatic change or rather bring the changes ourselves? The youth are the future leaders of the church. There should be joint effort by the leaders, parents, the youth, and every one of us to see that our youth are nourished and prepared not only to face and to know how to handle the life situations of today, but also to prepare them to be ready to take leadership roles of the church to greater heights in the future. By so doing, we shall save the future of our children and our church.   

All I know is that I know nothing but, the one who is in me knows what I know! Let’s embrace a better tomorrow.

The writer is an upcoming writer, song writer, gospel singer and assistant leader of Catholic Charismatic Renewal youth ministry Mbuya Parish.

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1529 Last modified on Saturday, 10 January 2015 08:53

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About Our Church

Welcome to Our Lady of Africa Parish Mbuya. We are located near Bugolobi Township in Nakawa Division. It is about 5 kms from the City Centre of Kampala. Mbuya Catholic Parish is a vibrant and diverse community made up of people from different parts of Uganda. We welcome you warmly and joyfully.

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