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Religious Youth Service

RYS Global Congress International Project

Participants: 250 Nations Represented: 13

New Delhi, India

Duration: February 7 - 18, 1993

Background: South and South East Asia had been very active with national and regional RYS projects. In order to work and develop the foundation in local communities the RYS decided to sponsor thirty six seminars and workshops throughout South and South East Asia. These seminars drew nearly two thousand participants and were on peace building themes that were appropriate the the RYS vision of world peace through interfaith dialogue and action. Many colleges and universities agreed to host these programs and both our advisiors and a much larger circle of friends of RYS grew from this. After concluding the seminars two hundred of the top seminar participants were selected to join fifty additional international participants in attending the RYS Global Forum at the YMCA in New Delhi.

The governor of Tamil Nadu saw his states participants off with a reception while a group of participants came with their college President (Loyola College).

The RYS Global Congress, was a watershed event on the centenial of the Global Parliament of Religions held in Chicago in 1893 was accomplished with the cooperation of the International Religious Federation for World Peace (IRFWP). The RYS Global Congress had its own workshops and program but had points when it intersected with the IRFWP Congress and the three conferences it was holding and also joined the historic Interfaith Peace March.

The RYS Global Congress (RYSGF) centered on ten unique week long seminars. The ten workshops were led by the most experienced and qualified advisors and graduates from the RYS and its sister project, The Youth Seminar for the World Religion's (YSWR). The international staff of educators and trainers teamed with local and regional educators to provide a diverse level of teaching experience for the participants.

The Congress itself was hugely successful in the eyes of the participants. Many commented that they would be able to work more fully to multiple the things that learned through the training.

On of the staff attending the RYS for the first time was the Principal of Loyola College in Madras, Fr. Alphonso. Fr. Alphonso was so moved as a result of his experience with the RYSGF that he went back and started a course of study based on the RYS which was one of the options of service required for graduation. The inter-change with the IRFWP participants was enlivening, especially for the elders who could catch the power of the RYS spirit. Some of the RYS alumni were part of the IRFWP giving them a wider experience base.

Congress Director: Rev. John Gehring,
Executive Director: Gary Young,
Organizational Leadrs: Mr. Prit Pal Singn, Ms. Ranjana Das, Rev. Piyaratna, Sri Venu Goswami, Michinori Hasagawa,
Khorem Omer

Education Leaders and Themes:

  1. Mr. Marks McAvity and Fr. Nithiya: " Environment:Developing an Interfaith Approach"
  2. Rev. Aruna Alexander, Dr. Nona Bolin: " Women's Issues in Development "
  3. Dr. Vera Mehta, Dr. Niranjana Gokarn: " Spirituality and Leadership for Social Change"
  4. Prof. N.R. Menon, Dr. Bert and Mrs. Judith Phillips " Building Global Citzens Through Values Education and Mult-Cultural Awareness"
  5. Mr. Henry Thiagaraja, Mrs. Virginia Longo " Marginalized Communities and the Religious Response"
  6. Dr. Ronald Burr, Dr. Sherry Hartman Burr, Dr. Suman Khanna " Approaches to Peace Studies"
  7. Dr. Frank De Graeve S.J., Dr. Xavier Alphonse S.J. " The Role and Responsibility of Youth in the Interfaith Future"
  8. Dr. James Burton, Mr. Kerim Tseney " Spirituality and Social Responsibility "
  9. Mr. John Maniatis " Healers/Healing: The Role of Spirituality in the Healing Profession"
  10. Mr. David Alexander, Mrs. Hema Govindarajan " Art and Spirituality: Where Two Rivers Meet "

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