Discussion Guide 3: Christian formation and education of adolescents
Jesus Christ, God incarnate, passed through every stage of life that we ourselves live: infancy, adolescence, youth, and adulthood. However, we have very few passages in the Gospels about his adolescence that tell us about his life in those years. The Gospel of Luke affirms that when Jesus was twelve he lived in Nazareth,
obedient to his parents, and grew in wisdom, stature, and grace before God and men (Luke 2:52). This brief description speaks to us of how he lived this time which is crucial in the life of a person.
Adolescence is the stage of life in which one begins to decide who we want to be and how we want to live, which constitutes an important moment with regards to evangelization. As an existential time that is characterized by an intensity of desires and experiences, it is necessary to teach adolescents to channel all the strength of their questions and longings. The values of their infancy are no longer sufficient, because they need greater understanding and depth in order to be able to choose them freely. In this sense, they also need a new and more personal experience of Christ and of the Church in order to persevere on this path.
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