Italy - Just over 100 days to International Congress "Youth and life choices: educational perspectives"

06 June 2018

(ANS - Rome) – On nearing the celebration of the Synod of Bishops on "Youth, faith and vocational discernment", scheduled for next October, the Salesian Pontifical University (UPS) and the Pontifical Faculty of Educational Sciences "Auxilium" are organizing the International Congress "Youth and life choices: educational perspectives" in Rome, 20-23 September 2018. "Together with experts from all over the world of young people from various continents, we will see how the Salesian charism and the life experience of Don Bosco and Mother Mazzarello can teach something about the choices of life today," explained Fr Mauro Mantovani, UPS Rector.

The event will take place at UPS headquarters and will bring together about 300 people among scholars, educators, formators and young people from all over the world.

The preparation of the congress has already represented a model of international collaboration between Salesians and Daughters of Mary Help of Christians: “With satisfaction we also underline, the very valid contribution that all the Provinces have already offered in responding to the Questionnaire-online survey that the Delegates have done accompanied by the Department for Youth Ministry. We invite you, dear Provincials, to follow this journey by asking you to send at least one representative of your province to participate in this International Congress,” wrote the Vicar of the Rector Major, Fr Francesco Cereda, in a letter addressed to all the Salesian circumscriptions.

Among the speakers expected at the congress, of special note the presence of card. Lorenzo Baldisseri, Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops; of mgr. Raúl Biord Castillo, bishop of La Guaira and Vice-President of the Venezuelan Episcopal Conference; of the Director of Youth Ministry for the Italian Episcopal Conference, mgr. Michele Falabretti; of the prof. Franco Garelli, Sociologist at the University of Turin; and of Prof. Laura Nota, professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Padua; as well as sociologists from various countries (Cameroon, Chile, India, Eastern Europe).

The event opens on Thursday 20 September with an introductory lecture. The sessions on Friday 21 September will focus on the topics: "Listening to the young" and "In dialogue to discern". Saturday 22 will be dedicated to educational perspectives in an ecclesial and Salesian key, and in the afternoon, on this theme, the presentation of 18 good practices active in different parts of the world and related to paths for educating young people to choices in different life spheres. Sunday, September 23, finally, will be dedicated to the conclusions, and end with the Eucharist.

Looking beyond the event itself, noting the degree of collaboration reached, Fr Mantovani says he is sure "the congress will be not only a point of arrival, but also a starting point for further future developments."

The full text of Fr Cereda's letter to the Provincials is available at

Further information is available on the website: 



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