derring-do, bubbling with life. Just was a college freshman when I first heard about Christ's Youth in look at them, so cool and hip! But look Action (CYA).But it wasn't until I deeper - they are coming to terms with their identities. They are flustered was a senior that I finally became involved. Before long The word conjures up images of vigor, bursting I would be â€˘ enthusiasm, derring-do, bubbling with life. graduating from by the world with its thousand-and-one college. Having been a member for such ideas, philosophies and lifestyles. a short time, I felt that it was too soon for me to leave it. I enjoyed being part of CYA.I believed in its mission. It Not surprisingly, many are fearful and anxious, from the mundane ("Oh no, what a disgusting pimple on my nose!") to the truly profound ("What's the meaning of life?"). They are apprehensive about their future, and dismayed with the relationships they can't seem to handle - with parents, with friends, even with themselves.
Don't pooh-pooh their worries. Many of them are growing up in dysfunctional families. Some never knew their parents. Some have been abused or molested. Some have too much money to spend, too little love to really feed on. Be there to help, and if you can't help, just be there.
They Are Searching For Their True Identity That was true for me. I guess I was grappling with an "identity crisis" as early as Grade School. But it was only in my senior year in college that I realized that I was trying to be "everything to everyone." A people-pleaser, deep down I was terribly insecure about myself. I became very dissatisfied and unhappy. Overthe years, with the help of friends and books, and seized with a growing confidence in the unchanging
made sense to me, therefore, to set aside (what I then thought as) a "couple of years" to serve as a full-time staff worker. Little did I know that the "couple of Don't pooh-pooh their worries ... years" would become eleven! But Be there to help, and if you those were 11 of the most can't help, just be there. meaningful years of my life. In that span of time I learned many lessons about youth and about youth love of God for me (for me? Incredible, work, which I would now like to share put true!) I gained deeper insight into with you. who I was, and who I could be.
The Youth Have Many Fears and Anxieties Youth! The word conjures up images of vigor, bursting enthusiasm,
An "identity crisis" need not be a crisis if you're there to point them on the right direction. They need to learn that they won't discover who they Continued on page 2
~---J ~. 1
LESSONS... from page 1
really are until they discover Jesus. Mter all, He said that we won't find our life unless we give it away (and for His sake!).
They Can Be Inspired - Like Really! Jorge was the top guy (they called him "Grand Chancellor") in the biggest "underground" frat in his university. Somewhere along the way, he met some CYAmembers who talked to him about Jesus Christ. In time ( and not without much struggling!) he decided to live for the Lord. At the risk of being beaten up by his "brods," he told them his decision, quit his position, and began to actively join our movement. Surprisingly, the frat left him alone. He for his part, for the remaining years in college and up till Med school, busied himself with evangelizing friends and serving in CYA.
We need to get over our general, somewhat cynical, impression that the youth are lazy, selfish and apathetic. In fact, they have an unbearable desire to change the world. I have met many other young people who have been challenged, like Jorge, to "sell everything with joy" in order to follow Jesus. It's not like they've given up their dreams. It's more like now they can "see" clearly enough to put all their dreams in the right order. Weneed to get over our general, somewhat cynical, impression that the youth are lazy, selfish and apathetic. In fact, they have an unbearable desire to change the world. Wesimply need to present to them an ideal worth living - and dying - for. Then, look out, world!
So, Can The Youth Change The World? Well, At Least A Little Bit Of It Mike was deep into drugs. At home he was a rebel. Kicked out of the university, he had to continue his
education in the To a young per- with those who are older. province. There he was like being taken serison, friends are They free to indulge in as ously, and they will listen to much drugs and as your advice. They need to like a lifeline. many parties as he feel, however, that you're That's why it's wanted. The irony was, there for them, that you're important for although he was on their side. idealistic at heart and youth workers Youngpeople are also ached to change the attracted to older people who to be their world, he realized he can be role models for them, couldn't even change friends too. who.can show them how himself. As a final act things are done, how values of defiance against God, he smoked pot can be lived out in the real world. I and listened to Led Zeppelin in church. once caught a TVshow featuring That night, he was shattered by a sense interviews with teenagers on a Florida of loneliness. So he knelt down and beach. They were asked, ''What do you prayed, "God... jfthere is a God... only think teenagers need most nowadays?" you can help me now. " He fell asleep Youwould have expected them to say afterwards with a peace that had eluded something insipid like "more entertainhim for years. That was the start of a ers, more new bands, more artists." On transformation that was to lead him to the contrary, they replied that "there become founder of CYAmany years were enough of those in America." later. Surprised? That's the story of What they needed were fathers who MikeJoseph, Jr.! would lead their families, who would be Friends Mean A Lot To Them there for them, whom they could look up to, and whom they could model "Only my friends understand me!" themselves after. I remember listening (so they think). Friendships like that to them with tears in my eyes. are not such a bad thing, really. That's I
how they learn virtues like loyalty, consideration for others, fair play, accountability. Paradoxically, they also pick up some of the most vexing ideas and odious habits from one another. Still, to a young person, friends are like a lifeline. That's why it's important for youth workers to be their friends, too. We'rethere, not to pretend to be sympathetic and understanding - because we really are!
They Look Up To Older Models I remember reading an article by "an aging youth worker" (what a terrible phrase!). The author was recalling her many experiences of trying to dress, act, and sound like the teenagers she was working with. But she couldn't fool them. In fact, they thought she looked ridiculous. The author finally realized that she didn't have to be "one of them" before they would trust and listen to her. While young people value their peers, they're also shrewd enough to realize they don't have all the answers. So they appreciate being able to relate
ho will stand by the youth? Who will sing with them, sing to them? When the curtains go up and they are thrust on center stage, with the whole world watching them, witt you be there to prompt them, clap for them, cheer them on? '~nd I heard the voice of the Lord saying, 'Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?' Then I said, 'Here am If Send me.' " (Isaiah 6:8)
TIStlAS. COLAYCO served as a fulltime staff worker of CYA for 11 years, sharing her many talents and spreading much joy. She continues to serve the Lord in other ways, especially in The joy of the Lord Community in Manila.
RECENTLY ATTENDED A
recollection with Fr. Joseph Galdon, S.l There I discovered fresh insights on some of the basics of Christian service. Allow me to share my reflections with you. One of my favorite songs is "Here I am, Lord". The refrain goes: "Here I am, Lord. Is it 1, Lord? I have heard You
with a strong desire to respond to His love, I began to make both big and small decisions to love God with my life. All I desire is to love God in word and in action, to love Him inside and out, to love Him in my mind, heart andsoul, and to show Him this love. According to Fr. Galdon, another word for love is availobility. To find out what "availability" means, let's cut this long word in half and see what we discover. Vail comes from the Latin
: "H : . :· 1A m :· •• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •••
• • : •
•• • : • : • : • :
• : • • •
word valeo meaning "to be valuable, important or helpful." It also means "to heal". On the other hand, ability
• : • : • : • :
means "lam able." Putting all these together, availability then means the ability to be of value, to be important or necessary or helpful; the ability to heal or
• • •
by Renee P. Ledesma. To be availCYA National Moderator • able for what? Or • for whom?
••••••••••••••••••••• calling in the night. I will go, Lord, if You lead me. I will hold Your people in my heart. " The words of the refrain speak of someone responding to God's call. Like many others, I, too, have taken it as my own song of response to God as I continue to serve the youth through CYA. From the day I first committed myself to the Lord, I have never stopped asking myself this question: How can I love God with my life? Since that day, I continued to discover God's perfect and personal love for me. Burning
We want to be available first and foremost for God, and for those whom He sends us - our families, friends and classmates, our oommunity in CYA, .r >. ~
rich and established. But then all of a sudden, and for apparently no reason, God asked him to leave his homeland and to go where He leads. How did he respond to this crazy message from God? Instead of questioning or arguing with God, verse 4 says, "So Abram went ... " Just like that. God called him, so he went. He simply packed up his bags, gathered his family, and left his home in faith. He held on to God's promise that he will be brought to another land and that he will have a great many descendants. He was given his only son, Isaac, in his old age. He became the father, the patriarch of nations. God was able to use him, all because of His' great faith and obedience. He made himself available for God. Another Old Testament character is Samuel, the son of Hannah. You can [md this very interesting story in 1 Samuel 1-3. Let me give you the gist anyway. Hannah was barren, meaning to say, she couldn't have children. As she was praying in the temple, she wept before God. Eli, the priest, at first mistook her grief for drunkenness, but when he found out the reason
Let me grve you some examples of Bible characters who made themselves available for God's purposes. First, there's Abraham, or Abram, as he used to be called. (See Genesis 12: 1-7) Abram is described as very
for Hannah's tears, he prophesied that she will have a son. This was fulfilled the following year when Hannah gave birth to Samuel. In gratitude, Hannah offered
Samuel to the Lord, making her son available for His use. So when he was three years old, Samuel was brought to the temple to be raised as God's servant. Later, when God revealed Himself to Samuel, he responded by saying, "Speak,
Lord, Your servant is listening. Then there's Ruth, a Moabite married to a man from Bethlehem. After her husband died, her mother-inlaw, Naomi, decided to leave Moab and go back to Judah, her hometown. Because of her love for Naomi, Ruth went with her. On their way to Bethlehem, Naomi tried to persuade Ruth to go back to Moab. Ruth replied with firm determination, "Wherever you go I will go, wherever you live I will live, your people shall be my people, and your God my God ... "So Naomi went back to her people with Ruth. She became one among God's chosen people. Because of her love and faithfulness to her mother-in-law, God rewarded her by giving her another husband, Boaz. Their descendants include David, Solomon, and eventually Joseph, the husband of Mary, mother of Jesus. Mary is another model of availability for God. When the angel announced God's message of salvation, she accepted God's call to bear His Son. She responded by saying, "Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. Let it be done to me according to Continued on page 5
Third, 1 sought it in psychology, in ideas which made me feel as if I was better than others. I almost even considered Satanism! I attended retreats to do mischief. But somehow- 1 don't know how- something pulled me back from this evil. I was also afraid that if I succeeded in the field of psychology, my friends would become envious of me. But I also feared failure. Once again, I was at a dead-end, and "It" was nowhere within sight.
are all unique and different from each other. But all of us want to be happy. I'm no exception. When I was young, I saw a glimpse of happiness in my parents' love for me. Though we weren't rich, they gave me all the things I needed and wanted. They helped me learn values, exposed me to the sacraments, and most of all, taught me who God is. I guess you could say that I was living like a king's son. But as I grew older, I began to look for a deeper and more lasting happiness. My search intensified especially after my parents separated for the fourth and final time. As a result, I searched for this elusive "It" by exposing myself to different people, ideas and philosophiessome good, most vile. At first, 1 sought "It" in my own achievements. 1 worked hard to please many people and to be famous. It was easy, especially since I belonged to the cream section. Opportunities came in waves. It was easy for me to become a prominent student leader in my high school. Yet "It" was still rmssmg. Second, I sought "It" in my friends. 1 did everything to please them, making myself as "in" as I could. Hardheaded and stubborn, I only cared about myself and people who (I thought) cared about me. But sadly, at the end of the day, the pain was still there. Yes, "It" was still rmssmg.
K I N G
'5 SON by
Voltaire John S. delos Reyes, eYA-UST
Confused, 1 tried getting into a relationship, hoping I could find "It" there. Everything went well at first. My life began to look "normal" again - 1 seemingly "returned" to God and got hold of my studies. But it was not meant to last. When my relationship ended, everything else seemed to crumble, too. Faced with despair and loneliness, I was slowly giving up my search for "It." The loneliness ended in college when God led me to an "angelic" professor, Ma'am Belen Pereras. She was the instrument that God used to bring me to Christ s Youth in Action. She invited me to attend an 8-week series of talks called the Christian Life Series (CLS). 1 surprised myself when 1 said yes, because I had already decided not to join any org in college. I went through the CLS deeply motivated to attend, despite the fact that I already "knew" the things they talked about. Why? Even if the talks were on the basics of our Christian faith, something about them - how the speakers shared, how my discussion group opened up - something struck me in a way nothing had, and before I knew it, I decided to have a personal relationship with my holy Father. As I surrendered to God's Spirit and committed my life to Him, I began to feel what I'd been looking for - abounding and eternal happiness. 1 said to myself, "Hey, now you've found rest, you've found what you thought didn t exist. " 1 realized at that moment that I hadn't been searching for "It" but for Him. I'm still on my journey towards Him, but I am confident that I can't miss Him because of the love He's shown me so concretely. I've found the happiness I was looking for, and I know that it can never be taken away from me. I'm finally living the way I was meant to live -like the King's sou. IX
Voltaire, 17, is a second year Electronics and Communications Engineering student at the University of Santo Tomas. He joined CYA in his freshman year. He loves poetry, books and mUSIC.
~ THE ACTION UPDATE .:. A Quarterly Publication of Christ's Youth in Action .:. EDITORIAL BOARD .:. Jake C. Yap, Chairman â€˘ Nette P. Hilario, Editor-in-Chief. Donna L. Panganiban, Illustrator â€˘ Raoul R. Roncal, Renee. P. Ledesma, and Lorna S. Campos, Editorial Consultants ~
Campus Kick-off Kindles Hearts Anew Two hundred and thirty committed members of CYAMetro Manila welcomed the new schoolyear last June 20 at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) chapel. The theme was taken from Gal 6:9 "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. " CYA-MM Director Raoul Roncal exhorted the CYA-ers
to persevere in loving God and evangelizing their fellow youth. His talk, entitled "The Battle Rages On ", focused on how God calls us to entrust our lives to Him, how He will send His peace, and how God will give us His power.
Meantime, we welcome a lot of new staffers this year. In Metro Manila alone, about 20 young men and women have committed themselves to fulltime work as new CYA staffers. Our prayers go with all of you as you follow God's will for your life. May He reward all of you for your generosity!
"Bridges"is available at all leading record bars, and in all CYA units. "Bridges"- it's a great way to let your friends know about God through hip music! )
: Her~ 1Am, torb ...from page 3 your word. "Her response, though laconic, spoke volumes about her· willingness to be available for God.
This year,we say goodbye to anumberofbrothers and sisters who served CYA First on the list is our beloved Tisha Colayco, who worked as a full-time CYA staff worker for 11 years! We also bid adieu to Lulu Cruz, who served us as Office Manager for a good number of years. Nette Hilario also ends her term after 4 years on staff.
More updates: YOF says goodbye to Harold Soriaga, and welcomes a new bass singer - Ian Calangi.
With hearts burning with love for-God, let's keep on fighting the battle for the hearts and minds of young Filipinos. We're all set for 1997-98!
Co rnirigs and Goings
The long wait is over! YOF's second album is finally out in the market. Produced and distributed by CYA and Praise Records Inc., the album entitled "bridges· includes ten original YOF songs.
•• • •• • : • : •
Our perfect example of love by availability is Jesus, who obeyed His Father and made Himself available. "My food is to do the will of My Father; not My will but Yours be done. "Because Jesus was available, the Father was able to bring forth His plan of salvation in His Son. And now God has glorified Him.
These are just a few examples of men and women of great faith who made themselves available for God. But everywhere around us, we can still find people who radically respond to God's love in faith. When I first decided to dedicate one year of service to CYA, I was aware of my own inadequacies. I also had my own plans after graduation. I knew the cost of the sacrifice I was being asked to make. After submitting all these to the Lord in prayer, I was full of confidence that I had heard
God's voice inviting me to go back to the schools, there to point to other young women the way to Him. And there have been many brothers and sisters who have gone ahead of me, who have continually inspired me to be available for God and His service. Make yourself available for Him. He wants you to receive Hislove. In His mercy, He now gives you a way to love Him hack. Are you available? Then say it in your heart, "Here I am,
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CHRIST'S YOUTH IN ACTION (CYA) is a Catholic movement of young Filipinos dedicated to evangelizing the youth and training leaders for the service of the Church. We serve colleges, universities, parishes and renewal groups in the Philippines and the Asia-Pacific region. AFFILIATES. Assumption College. Ateneo de Manila University. CYABaguio City. CYA-Cagayande Oro. CYA-Dumaguete City.CYA-lIigan City. CYA-Laoag.CYA-Zamboanga City. Don Bosco Technical College. Far Eastern University. Holy Angel University. Mapua Institute ofTechnology. Miriam College. Polytech-
nic University of the Philippines. St. Paul College-OC.University of Santo Tomas. Universityof the Philippines-Diliman. ASSOCIATES.CYA-AC(LosBanos). Angeles University Foundation. CYA-Bacolod City. CYA-Bukidnon. CYA-Cebu City. CYA-Davao City. CYA-General Santos City. CYAIloilo City. CYA-La Salle Lipa. CYALosAngeles (USA). CYA-Lyceumof Batangas. Mariano Marcos State University (llocos Norte). CYANaga City. Pamantasanng Lungsod ng Maynila. Rizal Technological Colleges. San Beda College. San Juan de Dios College. San Pablo City Colleges. CYA-SOLV (De La Salle University). St. Paul College-
Manila.St PaulUniversityTugueg8'ao. ng Panginoon. The Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and ProfesUP-PGH. sional~. Familia. Institute for PastoASSISTED. BCBP-PALS. Colegio ral Development.The Light of Jesus de San Lorenzo. ConcordiaCollege. Community. The Servants of the CYA-Iriga City. CYA-Legazpi City. Word. Tahanan ng Panginoon. CYA-NuevaVlZcaya.CYA-Tagbilaran. Women for Christ. Word of Joy East Asia Institute of Computer Foundation. Technology. Emilio Aguinaldo College. Republic Central Colleges CYA is a Foundation with "donee (Pampanga). San Mateo (Rizal). institution" status. All donations to Sower's Field (Cagayan de Oro). CYA are. tax-deductible. Please UniversiydlheAssurrption (P1JT1lEVl!l8). forward all correspondence to our University of the East. UERM. office at Unit 2, 111 Don Alejandro YAFC-Manila. YMPACT. Roces Ave., Laging Handa, 1103 Quezon City, Philippines. CYA is a Partner in Mission with the following communities and Tel. Nos. (63-2) 411-3201/3848. renewal movements:Ang Ligaya ng Fax No. (63-2) 411-3848. . PanginoonCommunity.Ang Lingkod
Unit Two, 127 Don A. Roces Ave., 1103 Laging Handa, Q.C. PHILIPPINES
Do yo~ want to
o Here is my gift donation of o I will pledge to give the ff. amount o o DP200 DP 1,000
be a part of it? For over 16 years, CYA has been used by Godto reach out to young people throughout the Philippines. Do you want to join us in our mission? L--
I want to be a partner in your work of reaching out to the youth. Enrol me as an "Action Partner."
every month others
o others (piS.specify),
I understand you will send me monthly reminders, news updates, etc. Name (Mr/Mrs/Ms)--------------------Address Tel. No. -L
Kindly fill up, cut out, and mail to CYA at Unit 2, 127 Alejandro Roces A~e, Laging 'ianda, 1103 Quezon City .J