MANILA, June 28, 2011?The hope of national hero Jose Rizal on the youthâ€™s capacity to contribute in nation building is not pointless if only young people today are given the chance to build their self-potential, a Church official said.
Fr. Conegundo Garganta, Executive Secretary of the Episcopal Commission on Youth, said that Rizal’s hope in the youth is not in vain and that the youth merely need more opportunities for self-realization.
Garganta stressed the importance of government providing access to quality education in the country so young people can further develop their abilities.
He was also quick to mention the role of the Church in the holistic growth of young people, specifically about having a relationship with Jesus Christ.
â€œ…The Church is ready to help the youth in reaching their dreams,â€ Garganta said.
â€œWhenever I hear a young person speaks (sic) about his/her dreams…about family, about the country, about change, about transformation, renewal, they view it in a positive way. We only need to provide opportunities of support,â€ he explained.
Education as youth’s hope
The national commemoration of Dr. Jose Rizal’s 150th birth date on June 19 led Filipino youth to realize they can be the â€œhope of the fatherlandâ€ only through education.
For Czarina Casagan, 21, a Mass Communication student from FEU, Rizal’s belief in the Filipino youth, which he expressed in the now famous poem â€œA la Juventud Filipinaâ€ (To the Filipino Youth), can only be possible through education.
Casagan also decried the involvement of young people in petty crimes.
Yno Sta. Maria, a high school student from San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila said he no longer believes that the youth is the â€œhopeâ€ of the country.
â€œIt is because in this generation, many young people chooses (sic) chaos and vice,â€ he explained.
But John Christopher Ureta, 20, a registered nurse, affirmed his belief in his fellow youth, saying â€œ…it is not the end for those who want to change their ways.â€
He also commended the many hard-working young people who want to succeed in life.
In honor of Rizal, 35 young achievers were recognized as “Mga Makabagong Rizal: Pag-Asa ng Bayan” during a program at the Cultural Center of the Philippines last June 17.
Rizal, one of the most vocal advocates for political reform during the Spanish colonial period, was himself one of the most highly educated people of his time.
(Jan Dell Posion)