TAG you're it too - Kamp Sajf 2013

Kamp Sajf 2013, which was held between 18th and 25th August, was another amazing experience for about 500 youth members in ZAK. It was a week characterised by energy, creativity and generosity brought about by youths for other youths that form part of 45 youth groups that together make Zghazagh Azzjoni Kattolika (ZAK) around Malta.

TAG you’re it too was the title for this year`s Kamp Sajf, inspired by the strong theme that was featured in World Youth Day – “Go, and make disciples of all nations.” (Mt 28, 19) The theme was explored and developed in creative ways these last few months by groups of young adults from ages 16 and upwards, amongst various other commitments being leaders in youth groups at their respective parishes, ZAK activities and numerous other responsibilities. Kamp Sajf was divided into four, addressing different age groups that vary from 10 to 20 years of age. Therefore, in each particular moment, the theme was addressed specifically for different youths.

At the end of the week, around 100 adolescents between 16 and 20 years of age took part in a packed weekend which was full of surprises. The theme was animated as if we travelling on a cruise liner. This adventure started on Friday night, where we discovered more about ourselves and our identity, influenced by culture, as well as our identity as growing Catholics. On Saturday, we discovered qualities that make disciples of Christ, guided by the Beatitudes that form the compass of our lives and help us to grow blessed. This was done through innovative workshops which included games, crafts, discussions and other ways so that youths learn in an informal setting.

This led us to realise that our mission as Catholics does not trap us in one place, but pushes us into discovering different people. Amongst others, on the pier at Rinella Bay in Kalkara, we joined together surrounded by the atmosphere of Rio de Janeiro. There, the setting was presented as if it were the eve of World Youth Day, which took place in Copacabana Beach, by means of reflections from Pope Francis and adoration of the Eucharist.

On Sunday morning, the youths helped out in preparing mass which was celebrated in such a beautiful way that everyone participated. Through mass, we continued to recognise the mission every person has to spread the Good News throughout the land, not on their own, but with the power of God through everyday behaviour and with the support of others as a community. The ‘Go in the peace of Christ’ at the end of mass, is the moment when Jesus sent us, and therefore we shouldn’t be afraid to get out of our comfort zone. Jesus has invited us to recognise the urgency in giving ourselves to others.

The youths that took part during this week find it difficult to forget the strong and beautiful sense of community that continuously grows and evolves in local groups. The sacrifices that are made by these youths convert into such an amazing substance that is then shared with others and thus the Good News is spread in different areas. As a society, we should continue to trust and encourage adolescents from different backgrounds, and with a lot of patience, show them that we love them and that together we will work to bring out the best in them, so that they will grow into responsible people, full of love for others.