By Fr. Lou Molinelli, SDB, Province Delegate of Youth Ministry
Over these weeks, I have been reflecting on the different animating structures of youth ministry in the Frame of Reference. Let’s take a look now at the local Coordinator of Youth Ministry and Team. We are told that the role of the CYM and the Team is to "... plan, organize and coordinate the pastoral activity of the work, according to the objectives set out in the educative pastoral plan (SEPP), under the guidelines of the council of the EPC...working closely with the Director" (p. 277-278). The Frame of Reference makes it clear that the CYM is not a lone ranger who is disconnected from others or the work in his/her ministry. Rather, the CYM works together with a team composed of representatives from the EPC to further the pastoral Salesian mission among the young and the total community. Most especially, the role of CYM and team involve the following tasks:
- To collaborate with the EPC Council to ensure that the fundamental features of Salesian Youth Ministry form part of the local educative pastoral plan, and to ensure that they are put into practice and evaluated;
- To coordinate the implementation of the local educative pastoral plan through planning with the different sectors of pastoral activity for which the CYM is responsible;
- To coordinate the implementation and integration of the local educative pastoral plan, ensuring that all activities work together and are directed toward education to the faith;
- To promote opportunities for formation for those engaged in the ministry for the young; and
- To ensure good collaboration and coordination of the local ministry with the local Church and other educative bodies in the area.
As you can see, the role of the local CYM and the team involves an active presence in all sectors of the local ministry. At times, some can think of the CYM’s role as just focusing in on the religious and spiritual program of the local work with no involvement in other more administrative or educative tasks. No—the role of the CYM and the team, under the guidance of the director, is to infuse and take care to see that all aspects of the local mission are infused with the Salesian charism and are held accountable for the elements of the educative pastoral plan. It is a huge task, but it is one that is essential for our charismatic identity and pastoral life in our works. Let’s be supportive of our CYMs and their teams and continue to collaborate together for the salvation of souls!