The video of the COMECE panel discussion, ‘Christian Testimonies Between Faith and Social Engagement,’ held in Lisbon on Thursday, August 3, 2023, in the context of World Youth Day, is now available! Watch the full video
The event raised awareness on the importance of the involvement of young Christians in Europe. Speakers from different fields and age groups addressed challenges in their professional and personal experience, explaining how they manage to live out their faith and their vocation in their daily life and at work.
The event was opened by COMECE First Vice-President, H. E. Mgr. Antoine Hérouard. Quoting Pope Francis and the example of Blessed Franz Jägerstätter, he exhorted young people to listen to others and be generative.
“It is through listening and walking together with others in our communities that we understand how others have been witnesses for us, and how we, too, can be witnesses of the Gospel at school, university and at work every single day”, COMECE First-Vice President stated. Read Mgr. Hérouard’s full speech
Lidia Pereira (MEP, Portugal) addressed the intertwinement between political service and faith, speaking about her experience in the European Parliament and the necessity of dialogue and compromise to reach a consensus in politics.
Tadeusz Syka (Director and author of the movie “Wyszynski – Revenge or Forgiveness”, Poland) exhorted young people to follow Christ and not be fearful of expressing their thoughts according to their moral and ethical beliefs.
Isabel Jonet (President of Banco Alimentar Portugal) delved into the history and mission of the Portuguese Food Banks and how her faith allows her to serve the poor and the most marginalised.
Finally, Carlos Diogo (Senior Project manager at Critical Software) spoke about living out one’s beliefs at work, following dreams and building Christian leadership through listening and engaging with today’s challenges, i.e. in new technologies.
Questions from the audience of young pilgrims ranged from the meaning of human dignity, Christian values and compromise in EU and local politics, to the issue of secularisation, as well as the place of prayer and silence in one’s daily life.
Finally, speakers called on all young people to have courage, serve the world with engagement and enthusiasm, involving others in their mission to serve God and the Common Good.
The event was organised by the COMECE Youth Net, the network of youth delegates acting as a consultative body of the Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union (COMECE). Find out more info about the COMECE Youth Net.