MYM Launches New Strategic Plan 2019-2021

The very first truth I would tell each of you is this: “God loves you”. It makes no difference whether you have already heard it or not. I want to remind you of it. God loves you. Never doubt this, whatever may happen to you in life. At every moment, you are infinitely loved.
— Pope Francis, Christus Vivit, Par. 112 1.

These words of Pope Francis, addressed to youth in his Post-Synodal Exhortation, Christ Vivit (Christ is Alive), capture the same evangelizing impulse that Saint Marcellin Champagnat had towards the youth of his time; “Every time I see young people, I can’t help but tell them, ‘How greatly Jesus loves you!’”

It is an exciting time to be involved in youth ministry in the Church. The 2018 Synod on Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment reinforced the priority of developing solid Catholic youth ministry programs to aid in the formation of a new generation of missionary disciples. Just as importantly, it gave equal emphasis to journeying with young people, with all their inherent questions, doubts and longings. As our Superior General, Brother Ernesto Sanchez, FMS, remarked at the Synod; “Let’s talk more about a ministry not for young people but a ministry with young people.”

Our 2019-2021 Strategic Plan marks a new beginning in Marist Youth Ministry in Australia. As Marists of Champagnat, we are being invited to journey together as a “global charismatic family”, to “cultivate a spirituality of the heart, that fills us with joy and makes us inclusive” and to “be present in more significant ways among children and young people on the margins of the world.” We are being challenged to empower our young people to become agents of change and bridge builders in our communities, the wider society and globally.

Our Strategic Plan outlines the key priorities that will enable us to explore creative and contemporary ways of nurturing Christian discipleship with school students and young adults over the next three years. We want to do this in a way that is both sustainable and leaves room for growth in partnership with other Catholic youth ministry initiatives.

With Mary and Champagnat, may we journey forward with a passion for proclaiming Jesus and His Gospel, through the witness of our lives and our mission with young people.

Brother Greg McDonald, FMS
National Coordinator, Marist Youth Ministry