From the Worldwide Faith News archives

Asia Pacific Youth Meet in Taiwan to Speak on Peace

From "pctpress" <>
Date Thu, 29 Apr 2004 14:57:03 +0800

Taiwan Church News 2722, 26 April through 2 May 2004
Reported by: Yang Shu-hao.  Translated and Rewritten by David Alexander

What to the young people of the Asia Pacific Region think about the great
problems of the world?	Representatives from six ecumenical student and youth
groups in the area met in Hsin Chu, Taiwan, from April 22-29 to share their
ideas and learn from each other.  The conference was organized by Easynet,
which brings together members of
* Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs (APY)
* Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) -Youth
* International Movement of Catholic Students (IMCS) Asia-Pacific
* International Young Christian Students (IYCS) Asia
* World Student Christian Federation (WSCF) Asia-Pacific
* World Young Women Christian Association (YWCA)
Altogether there were representatives from Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan,
Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, India and Sri Lanka.  They met,
discussed, and produced a final report.

This year's topic was "Peace". Ruki Fernando from Sri Lanka was the main
discussion leader. Discussions were organized around "Viewpoints on Peace",
"Authority", "Hopes and Dreams" and "Peacemaking".

Fernando said that God has proclaimed good news to the people of the world,
but that news contains both peace and conflict. Conflict brings forth the
process of peace because it draws people into situations where they present
ideas and engage in dialogue.  The clash of ideas can lead to positive
discussions that result in meaningful peace.

He called on Christians to understand that the peace that God has brought
requires our active participation to establish and maintain. It is
through devotion, prayer and positive attitudes during conflict. These bring
peace to fruition.

The representative from Taiwan, Mr. Chou Fu-yi, said that after his
interactions with youth from all over the Asia Pacific Region he felt
connected to all nations in the area and had received many new ideas.  He had
not previously considered how Taiwan, Japan, Korea and Hong Kong are all
affected by hegemony between China and America or how recent years' Asian
financial crises have tied these nations together intimately.

But it was when a delegate from Thailand wrote an anti-war declaration that
began to understand how many nations are currently mired in armed conflict.
began then to appreciate what he has here in Taiwan, where even in the midst
of political and economic struggles, democratic processes are operating.

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