National Service Malaysia, Handbook for Catholics

My dear young people,
You have often heard the phrase ‘Today’s youth are the leaders of tomorrow’.
However we find that Scripture never places the young in such a category. It
never instructs us to wait until we are more mature or knowledgeable or skilled
before we begin to take God’s Word seriously and consider what plans and
purposes the Lord has for our lives.
The Word of God is not silent concerning the conduct of young people and their
role in the Church and in society. Just like St Paul, the Church offers great support
and encouragement to the youth. St Paul was a great encourager, especially
to the young as clearly seen in the words that he spoke to Timothy, “Don’t let
anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the 

believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity” (1 Tim. 4:12).
Similarly, the Church understands the struggles and pressures faced by the
young people today. We understand the tests and trials that accompany you
in society. As followers of Christ, you are not exempt from peer pressure and
from the pressure of a materialistic society to conform to the standards and
lifestyles of the world. Therefore, it is these words of St Paul that we urge you
to commit to memory and put into practice as you go about your daily routine
amidst society.
In everything that you do, place God above all. Be proud of who you are – be
proud that you have been specially chosen as disciples of Christ, a right that was
given to all of us at our baptism. Set aside time for your Sunday worship, for
personal prayer and for Scripture. Do not give cause for anyone to claim that
you, our young people lack the ability to be leaders, to be righteous or be holy.
As you embark on a new journey for the National Service Camp do not despair
that you are away from your family and parish community. Let this booklet that
we have prepared especially for you be your constant companion and guide
for the next three months. The information contained here will help you locate
the nearest church to your campsites. The prayers will help you to continue to
develop and be rooted in your faith and be witnesses of Christ.
Be assured that the Catholic community will be keeping all of you in prayer
during your stint in the National Service camps: “Let us keep our eyes fixed on
Jesus, who leads us in our faith and brings it to perfection” (Heb 12:2).
PMPT Core Team
1 November 2013

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