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Promoting young lives in Pakse, Laos

Young lives: From August 19 to August 24, 2020, for 6 days and 6 nights our team traveled further south to Pakse.
With the help of the Monsignor, priests, congregations and local communities, our team was able to promote in five different places which are: the minor seminary, Phanone, Huaypheck, Khampeng and the village of Huaymood

We introduced the program to priests, promoted to attract new applicants, met and built relationships with our partners and alumni so that we could continue to journey together.
There were about 200 young people and children from the 4 villages who participated in these promotional activities.

Join the Taizé prayer in the village of Huayphek

Promotion in the village of Phanon

Lunch with the priests in the village of Phanon

Promotion in the village of Khampeng

Promotion in the village of Khampeng

IFFAsia Alumni Gathering and Fellowship Evening at Pakse Minor Seminary

Our first promotional event

From our entire journey, August 19, 2020 marked a remarkable experience for the Young Lives team.
It was the first time that we presented the program to the priests of Paksé.

The event was attended by about thirty people including priests, nuns, seminarians and young people.
It was a day of program sharing, feedback and exchange of life experiences.

The priest and nuns gave a favorable response on how the program can help young people learn basic life skills.
As they are always with people, they are aware of the reality and the challenges of youth.

The growing confidence of the local team


It was the first time for us to present the program in Pakse.
The local team is made up of three (3) young people from the three (3) Apostolic Vicariates of Laos which are Vientiane, Thakhek-Savanhnakhet and Pakse with the Program and Development Officer from the Philippines and their Country Officer from Malaysia.

Our local team was able to confidently present the program and translate for overseas team members.
It may seem ordinary for other countries to be able to speak and translate in English, but not for Laos.
There are very few Laotians who are fluent in English. And for a country that rarely uses English at work or school, acquiring the language is a challenge.
The way they presented and handled the issues showed how Young Lives trained them to be more effective and efficient in their line of work.


Sharing our testimonies of life

The presentation ended with the sharing of Ms. Aleona (an alumnus of Young Lives and IFFAsia and a staff member sent by Fondacio Asia to coordinate Young Lives Laos) and Fr. Visien (rector of the seminary and alumnus of the IFFAsia).
Aleona’s sharing is about her journey of growing her discipleship since she started working at Young Lives Laos. At the same time, she shared the challenges she faces to continue serving full time.
It was certainly not easy but it was worth preparing her for the mission in Laos.

Fr. Visien shared his growth on his exposure to cultural diversity and gender, being one of those priests who had trained as a seminarian after finishing high school.
His experience during training at IFFAsia helped him in his priestly vocation.

Conclusion


All of this promotion experience has helped us become more confident in our mission. We were so empowered and happy to share the goodness of Young Lives.
Additionally, 20% of young people expressed interest in joining Young Lives because of this promotion trip. And of these, three have confirmed their willingness to apply for our program.
This is just the beginning. We look forward to more students in the near future.

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