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International Marist Youth Meeting

10/07/2013: General House

The IMYM to be held in Rio de Janeiro from 17 to 22 July is the third meeting organised by the  Marist Institute to coincide with the World Youth Day (WYD). The idea took concrete form in 2008, with the celebration of the WYD in Sydney. It originated in the policy adopted by Br Seán Sammon and his Council to have meetings with young Marists at the regional level. Such meetings have been held with the youth of Europe (Spain 2005), Africa (Kenya 2006), Asia (Philippines 2007),  « Arco Norte » (Guatemala 2008) and Brasil and « Cono Sur » (Argentine 2008). A meeting with the youth of Oceania was also planned for 2008. The same year, the WYD was being held in Sydney. The Marists of Australia decided on this occasion to organise a «Marist  Festival», on the eve of the WYD and invite youth from all over the world. The then General Council decided to unite this initiative of the Australian Marists with its desire to meet the youth, and thus the first International Marist Youth Meeting was born.


class=imgshadowSydney 2008

The motto of the Sydney meeting was the same as that used for the WYD, a verse from the Acts of the Apostles 1 : 8 : « You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and then you will be my witnesses… » About 700 young people from the four Marist branches gathered at Saint Joseph’s College. They were invited to welcome ‘new dreams’ and march towards an ideal. This was summed up in the appeal of Bishop Kevin Downling who, speaking to the young Marists, encouraged them to "change the world". See more:  http://old.champagnat.org/000.php?p=159.


Madrid 2011

The second meeting was organised by the Marist Conference of Spain, in collaboration with the General Council, in August 2011. Representatives of Marist youth chosen from each Province met in Buitrago, Madrid. To motivate the meeting, the organisers chose the word « belivin »  in rapport with the motto of the WYD : « Rooted in Christ, firm in the faith. » Nearly 200 young people took part in the Buitrago meeting. Other youth were hosted in three Marist centres (Tui, Barcelona and Alicante). All came together for the final celebration in Buitrago, on the feast of Mary’s  Assumption, 15 August.

They expressed themselves thus in the finalmessage sent to the Institute :

We are very grateful to the Marist Institute for accompanying us, showing us everything that Jesus, Mary and Marcellin Champagnat can contribute to our lives, staking on us as Marist actors, and believing in us as persons with multiple talents. We give thanks for the mission of the Institute and for the model it lives and transmits ; thanks for being light and hope in the situations of each Province, and for giving us a model in our lives which helps us to become persons and to improve our world, step by step.

For more, see: http://old.champagnat.org/000.php?p=158).


class=imgshadowRio 2013

One of the practical proposals made by the young people of Madrid was the necessity of organising international meetings which promoted cultural exchanges between Provinces, in order to share questionings and propositions relating to the life of Marist youth. Inspired by this desire of the young people, the General Council, through the Secretariat of Mission, encouraged from the beginning the holding of an event preceding the WYD of Rio de Janeiro. The Secretariat asked the Marist Union of Brasil to organise this meeting. An organising commission was appointed  which has been at work since November 2011.

In line with the reflections made inSydney in 2008, the motto chosen for the meeting in Brasil is CHANGE – Make the difference!

The meeting is being held from 17 to 22 July in the « Colégio Marista São José », Rio de Janeiro, Brasil.

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