Sunday, June 1, 2014
The Youths In The Way
It is remarkable to see teenagers and youths participating in a two-hour Eucharist. Most young people today would rather "hang-out" with their friends in bars and clubs, going to the movies,...... and sadly sometimes doing illegal things such as getting into hardcore drugs.
The importance of family is emphasized in the Way. Husbands and wives sit together. Youths sit together with their parents unless they are part of the cantors. What is learned in the Neocatechumenal Way is practiced in the home. Families at home say their prayers together, and eat their meals at the table together. Gone are the days when teenagers would be eating dinner in the living room watching television while mom and dad eat separately in other parts of the house.
Of course, there are also a few teenagers who came only with their single parent because their father had left them when they were very little. Dad is nowhere to be found and does not even come around. These kids first came into the Way feeling abandoned and rejected by their father. Therefore, it is not surprising to find some anger in them. In time, these kids have received the grace to forgive. In the Way, they learned that they cannot change the other person. The only change that can take place is themselves. In other words, one cannot change the other person's adultery, but one can change his/her own anger.
Matthew 15:17-20 “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.”
In time, these youths learned that it was their father who suffered the most in his adultery. He was a weak man, and they prayed for him.
These youths walking in the Way have learned to read and use the Bible than the regular Catholic. Most regular Catholics like my parents keep the Holy Bible at home on a book shelf. Many of these youths have also taken part of the World Youth Day events. Some of them have stood up to be itinerants or missionaries. Many of them also participate in the monthly scrutacio, which usually takes about 3 to 4 hours long. Can you imagine youths who give up their Sunday evenings to attend Bible scrutacio for four hours? Can you imagine teenagers giving up their Saturday nights to attend a two hour Eucharist? Can you imagine young people staying up all night until dawn during an Easter Vigil?
Of course, these youths are no better than the youths who spend their Saturday nights "hanging-out" with their friends. They simply found it better to spend their Saturday nights worshiping God.