May 1st kicked off the year of Genfest! It was celebrated in Loppiano (a small town of the Focolare in Italy). There were skits, music, dances, witness talks and workshops. The theme was that of Genfest 2012 which we are all headed to: Let's bridge.
Workshop on brotherhood and politics
Can brotherhood be achieved through politics? Can a greater sense of public participation be an answer?
This is the question to which more than 600 young people (and beyond!) have tried to respond in an afternoon of dialogue and discussion in the workshop “Politics and brotherhood: crazy stuff?”
There were many topics discussed on stage: the constant search for common good in the reality of the local government; overcoming the barriers of hatred and indifference; the discovery of the value of hope, the identifying sign of our time; and the personal commitment to do one’s own part... The workshop culminated with a simulation that has involved us in immigration issues, the analysis of opportunities offered by immigration and the common search for a solution to existing limitations in resolving the said issues.
Workshop on choices
If we have only one choice, we are in trouble… if we have two choices, we would have a dilemma… if we have three or more, we have the flexibility, but it would be more difficult to choose. What is better, then: to have lots of choices or to have a few? This is how Pasquale Ionata opened the forum “A step here or there, a life full of choices”, opening the eyes of the participants on the paradox of choice.
There were more than 300 participants. After the key question, there was an exercise to see who were maximizers and satisfiers. It was also discussed how choices are a form of power; at the same time, choices could confuse us, make us lose time and remain eternally searching for something better. Another topic was the happiness that the satisfiers have because they are content with what they have and what they are; tending to compare downwards, satisfiers increase their esteem and decrease their anxiety. Another highlight: seeing flowers and not the weeds, that is, being positive, helps in being content and happy.
Pasquale Ionata concluded saying that there are always many choices: to do or not to do, to be or not to be. But with serenity and non-pessimism, we can find the right choice.