Koinonia 2019 – 3 (N.103)

Spiritual Assistant and YouFra: the art of vocational discernment


The Synod on young people was on the theme «young people, faith and vocational discernment». Continuing our reflection on the journey with young people in this third issue of Koinonia, we focus on the role of the spiritual assistant in the vocational discernment of the Franciscan Youth (YouFra). All Christians are called to life, to friendship with God in Jesus and to holiness[1] in the current context as it is, “with its risks, its challenges and its opportunities”[2]. YouFra shares the Franciscan vocation with other members of the Franciscan Family. However, being young, many are still in search of their own vocation and others try to mature in the vocation they have discovered. They need to be accompanied in discernment and maturation. The service of spiritual assistance recommended by the OFS legislation has this purpose as well. Therefore, as pastors and traveling companions for young people, the assistant should be an expert in the art of vocational discernment. Starting from the experience of Francis of Assisi, model of YouFra and from some indications offered by Pope Francis in the Post Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Christus Vivit, we propose here four elements which, in our opinion, should guide the assistants of YouFra in the vocational discernment for young people. These four elements are: identifying the dreams of young people, helping them to ask the question “Lord what do you want me to do?”, giving them opportunities to serve the poor and then propose some pathways.

  • Koinonia 2019-3Spiritual Assistant and YouFra: the art of vocational discernment– Fr. Francis Bongajum Dor, OFMCAP

N. 103

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[1] Cf. Pope Francis, Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation, Christus Vivit, Loreto, 2019, n° 286.

[2] Pope Francis, Apostolic Exhortation, Gaudete et Exsultate, Rome, 2018, n° 2.