Yesterday, from 2 pm to 9 pm, over 300 young people coming from the various Basic Ecclesial Communities (BECs) in the parish gathered at the covered court for the Parish Youth encounter. This is part of the series of activities for the coming fiesta of the Mother of Perpetual Help Parish. Besides the usual games and cultural presentations the young people spent time in listening to some talks and in celebrating the Eucharist which was presided by Fr. Nestor Gaspe - the newly-installed parish priest.
I was assigned to give a talk on the Blessed Virgin Mary. I was aware that it would be difficult to give a talk about Mary to young people, especially at 3 in the afternoon - they would easily fall asleep and their attention span was short. So instead of the usual lecture, I gave them a "concert" - this meant singing to them and rapping. I opened with a song from the beatles "Let it Be." I know that the Beatles did not compose this in honor of the blessed mother but the lyrics are appropriate, especially the opening lines: "When I find myself in time of trouble Mother Mary comes to me, speaking words of wisdom let it be." After showing a video clip from the movie "the Passion of Christ" which showed Mary with Jesus, I proceeded to "rap" the story of Mary based on the Gospel and the Acts on the apostle. I ended singing a "modern" Marian hymn "To Mary." There a very good response from the young audience, the sang with me and also clapped and danced with the rhythm of the rap. They were very attentive and nobody fell sleep. They continued to enjoy themselves the rest of the afternoon playing games. After the mass and dinner, they had cultural presentations.