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Melanesian Messenger Online distributed by the
Church of the Province of Melanesia
Gaps in Youth Mission Need to be Filled
August 13, 2007

[Melanesian Messenger - Melanesia] A Provincial Youth Consultation of the Church of Melanesia has agreed that all Church institutions at various levels be encouraged to work together to address issues and priority areas that were identified as hindrance to effective participation of young people in youth ministry.

The consultation has over a week uncovered various issues from all dioceses and Institutions to be addressed through a set of recommendations that would be implemented according to their own short, medium and long term goals and priorities.

These recommendations include support to enable training to be provided at the Diocesan level relating to their spiritual needs, literacy, ability to be self-reliant, culture and moral values, leadership and teamwork as well as changes to structures, funding of critical positions and provision of additional funding to be allocated for the implementation of such recommendations.

The Church has over the years recognized the need to improve participation of youths in the life and ministry of the Church so that they can become responsible and useful members of the Church and society.

The meeting agreed that Youths of the Church are defined as those between 13 and 30 years of age regardless of gender, marital status and disabilities.

In this regard, youths are assets to the Church with raw potential that need to be trained, developed and further utilized for maximum spiritual, mental, social, cultural and political benefit of the Church and the communities they belong to.

Against the backdrop of rapid and unsettling social and economic changes experienced in Solomon Islands and Vanuatu and the Government’s inability to provide basic social services and the lack of employment and income generating opportunities in both countries, there is a need to recognize, guide and empower this vulnerable group.

The consultation was well attended by Church leaders, diocesan youth representatives and representatives from the Church’s provincial institutions from all eight dioceses in Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.

The Church of Melanesia Provincial Youth Consultation was held in Honiara, Solomon Islands from 6th – 9th August 2007.