Jesus Youth is an International Association within the Catholic Church with a focus on evangelising young people, promoting an active Christian way of life and nurturing their missionary initiatives. Jesus Youth is an initiative of young people themselves, who, filled with the Holy Spirit try to reach out to other young people. In their life situations, they strive to give time to the Lord and employ day-to-day life activities as a means of evangelisation and sanctification of the world. The network of small and vibrant groups of Jesus Youth serve as a platform for young people to grow together and share Christ using their talents and gifts.
Jesus Youth is passionately Catholic in its vision, approach and expression. On the 7th of April 2016, the Pontifical Council of Laity (Vatican) recognised Jesus Youth as an “International Private Association of the Faithful with Juridical personality”. On May 20th, 2016, Bishop Josef Clemens, Secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Laity, presented to Jesus Youth a Decree of the Recognition. The same decree approved its statutes.
Jesus Youth apostolate in Ireland is carried out through different ministries. They are:
YOUTH MINISTRY |TEENS MINISTRY | FAMILY MINISTRY | PRE-TEENS MINISTRY | KIDS MINISTRY | INTERCESSION MINISTRY | FORMATION
2. OUR MISSION
Lead people, especially the youth, to a renewed life in Christ, assist them in their growth in holiness and prepare them for the apostolate in communion with the mission of the Church.
Help people to have a personal relationship with Christ and experience the love of the Father and the fellowship and guidance of the Holy Spirit in their lives.
Cultivate in its members a life of missionary discipleship, urging them to become joyful witnesses of the Gospel in the contemporary world.
3. OUR SPIRITUALITY
The members of the movement commit themselves to a life of holiness through the practice of the Six Pillars.
PRAYER | SACRAMENTS | WORD OF GOD | EVANGELISATION | FELLOWSHIP | OPTION FOR THE POOR
Jesus Youth originated in Kerala, the coastal state in the southern tip of India. Starting from 1976 the Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR) touched the lives of many in those parts resulting in the formation of a number of youth groups. By the early 1980s, these groups had already matured into a vibrant presence. In 1985, the International Year of the Youth, these groups came together with a single name: Jesus Youth, which in turn helped it to forge ahead with a clearer vision and a wider participation of young people in the Church. Stirred by the Spirit and impelled by their inner dynamism these youths took the spirit of the movement to their life situations and also to the places to which they moved for studies and jobs. By the 1990’s, Jesus Youth had spread to other parts of India and at the turn of the millennium the movement had already spread to a number of countries in different continents. It is now present in more than 30 countries.
5. BEGINNINGS IN IRELAND
In the year 2004, a few Jesus Youth members migrated to Ireland for their career prospects. They have networked and came together regularly to pray at the side chapel of St. Teresa’s Church in Clarendon Street, Dublin. The first prayer meeting started on June 2005. Later, a weekly central prayer meeting for young adults, SANCTUM was established in the heart of the Dublin city at the Blessed Sacrament chapel. This attracted and inspired many young people to live an authentic Christian lifestyle as they found the fellowship joyful and friendly with a style that was simple yet vibrant. The following years witnessed the starting up of Jesus Youth groups in different parts of Ireland – Cork, Galway, Sligo, Cavan and Kilkenny which led to the establishment of a national movement with a clear vision and purpose.
6. IMPORTANT MILESTONES
2004 - JY Begins in Dublin
2005 - First Prayer meeting initiated at St. Teresa’s Church Chapel, Clarendon Street, Dublin
2006 - First National Team was formed; One-day outreach programmes in Dublin
2007 - First Leadership Training Programme; Residential Growth Retreat; LOVE BEYOND
BORDERS European Conference
2008 - SPLASH - A series of outreach programmes across Ireland; Family ministry started
2009 - First Teens Prayer Group initiated; Rexband Tour in Dublin and Cork
2011 - First batch Discipleship Training Programme for young adults
2012 - Eucharistic Conference in Dublin; Family retreat; LITTLE SAINTS – Kids ministry started
2013 - First Household Gathering started
2014 - Pre-teens ministry started; Second batch Discipleship Training Programme; Rexband
Tour in Dublin and Cork
2015 - JY Formation programme commenced
2016 - National Youth Conference, iConnect
2017 - Third batch Discipleship Training Programme
2018 - World Meeting of Families in Dublin; Musical and Theatrical Worksop by Rexband;
BLAZE - National teens retreat