2018 has been a great year for the Universal Church as it witnessed the  Synod of Bishops on Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment.  From the onset, it was clear that this would be a different type of Synod as  the Holy Father expressed his wish to listen to young people so that the  Synod does not just listen to the voices of Bishops. As such, its preparation  was clearly marked by listening, including the preparations of the  Instrumentum Laboris itself, the Pre-Synod Youth Meeting which took  place in March 2018 in the presence of the Holy Father and some young  people as well as the presence and presentations of the young people  during the Assembly in October. It was truly a wonderful moment to be in  the Synod Hall together with so many young people from all over the  world. It gave meaning also to the energy and vitality of the Church which  at times has been seemingly stymied. 

On our part, in the IMBISA Region, we have also attempted to give voice to  the young people. As part of our preparations for the Synod of Bishops we  held our own Pre-Synod Meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa in July  2018. Among those present at the meeting included the young people  themselves as well as the Youth Chaplains from the Episcopal Conferences  in IMBISA and the Bishops who were to attend the October Assembly in  Rome. The aim of the meeting was to listen to the joys and the hopes, the  griefs and the anxieties of the young people of our time. It enabled the  Bishops who would eventually attend the meeting in Rome to have some  perspective on the experiences of the young people of our Region.  

As it has become important for the pastors of the Church to listen, this  booklet contains some of the stories of the young people in our Region. We  are called upon to listen to them with understanding and patience. On  occasion they don’t get things right. Yet, we have to profit from their energy  and guide them correctly on the path of life. Christ wants us as Bishops to  be particularly close to young people and teach them the truth. “People  were bringing their little children to him that he might touch them, and the  disciples scolded them for this. When Jesus noticed it, he was very angry  and said, ‘Let the children come to me and don’t stop them, for the kingdom 

of God belongs to such as these. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not  receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it’? Then he took the  children in his arms and laying his hands on them, blessed them” (Mk.  10:13-16). 

+ Joseph Sephamola OMI                                                                                                                                                                Bishop of Qacha’s Neck                                                                                                                                                           

+Ernesto Maguengue                                                                                                                                                              Auxiliary Bishop of Nampula


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