5 December 2016

Once again the youth festival took place on Sunday 25th September in Mariapolis Lia, this year the 23rd anniversary.

Proceeded by four months of preparation filled with profound experiences and many steps.

In the first meetings the idea of why to do the festival and what to convey with it, has came along. It ‘was an important process, fruit of communion between the gen and the assistants, in which arose the possible themes to start the work: the meaning of life, the time, the other is me, destroy to build, roads that intersect, the mazes of life, etc. …

After this first period, we started working in small groups: choreography, script, set design, broadcasting, theater, to address the theme under different aspects, …

image002In all this work has come with relief a special feature that the school has this year: the grand opening and the desire of the Gen to know and build with all the realities of the citadel. The family atmosphere experienced months before in the preparation of the Intercultural Festival, was a solid base for building something bigger together. Moments of meditation, and intentions to live the word of mouth and communion before start working, have helped a lot to put us in unity with all.

The chosen solgen was: “RISK, WHAT YOU’RE LOOKING THERE”.

More than 1,000 young people participated in the festival on Sunday 25th, including 550 from Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay and some from some far Argentine provinces, arrived Saturday to learn more about the Mariapolis. It was prepared for them a program of games, tours and a night of talent prepared by themselves with the youth of the Citadel.

Sunday program was articulated by two Persons (Paula and Manuel) that the circumstances has put them together, discovering that they have the same travel itinerary, they decide to do this together. And that’s how people know and live situations that put them ahead of questions regarding the present moment, to start again, the sense of pain, come out of themselves, and also the other as a gift; the answers come through life experiences and dialogues between the two of them …

image003The chosen language to convey the experiences and the plot of the theater, was blunt and has asked each one in a personal way. The songs and the choreography, with a lot of energy and musicality, have helped to make a summary of this effort to find something great for everyone. The external and internal setting in the room, high artistic level, has much helped the young people to come into full on this trip.

A special moment, which was not in the script and that touched the soul of many, was the embrace of a Gen to another that, affected, after sharing a lived experience of pain in her family, burst into tears … this gesture has produced a great commotion in the hall, an applause that never ended because it expressed the feelings of all.

In the end, a proposal to each of the participants: to be able to give meaning to their lives and to repeat this fraternal space there where everyone is located. Our impression was that we had witnessed a true spectacle of Jesus in our midst, the true protagonist. Not only on stage, but inside everyone’s heart who was able to see some little miracles behind the scenes: re-establishment of family relationships and the healing of deep wounds.

Now, some impressions from the youth and adults, that have accompanied the boys.

“The experiences especially have touched everyone’s soul, every word was said on the stage arrived deeply to everyone. It hits me in a special way as you spoke about the pain in a close way, real, believable, natural. “

image004“I have never seen so many sincere hugs and without malice”

“I saw in the boys faces an evident emotion, you could see the Jesus in the midst betweenyou, the root of everything you have done. I can imagine the quarrels, arguments, laughter, tears … But I can feel the joy in every one of bringing this life to each of those who were there. This is incredibly amazing. “

“This was the first time I arrive in Mariapoli and my impression was that the place was very big, I thought everything is very nice, the place is beautiful. But what made me happiest was to see so many people demonstrating the joy that they had together, seeing this and seeing how to transmit the happiness in the songs is something brilliant, truly, I will carry with me a great memories of how I saw that we were all united without importing anything. I enjoyed this new experience. “

image005“Yesterday I saw the incarnation of the Ideal in your stories. Your words were deeply human and therefore profoundly divine. you have not made a speech about the pain, but you did talk to the pain through the humanity of yourself. I mean, I have not seen a theory, I have not heard phrases. I saw the ideal lived, embodied and expressed according to the culture, the history, the lives lived and the personality of each one of you. Maybe you do not realize what it means: you are the history and the prophecy of the Focolare Movement, a movement that does not speak of Chiara, but that Chiara is speaking to the world today, who does not speak of Jesus, but Maria and for this, again, give Jesus to the world”

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