I Encuentro Internacional de Jóvenes Spínola

El pasado mes de noviembre, junto con Spínola Solidaria, jóvenes Spínola de todo el mundo se reunieron para compartir su visión del mundo y cómo quieren construirlo. Dentro de la fase precapitular hemos querido generar este espacio para escuchar la voz de los jóvenes sobre temas como el deterioro del medioambiente, las guerras, la situación de la mujer, la política o la pobreza... Hoy nos cuentan qué significó para ellos este encuentro. 


Fran Vallejo, España.

El pasado sábado 13 de noviembre celebramos dentro de la Congregación el primer Encuentro Internacional de Jóvenes Spínola. Fue un espacio online desde donde pudimos conectarnos jóvenes de los nueve países donde está presente la Congregación y compartir un tiempo donde confluyó la visión que cada cual tiene del mundo, y cómo, desde el lugar que ocupamos cada uno de manera personal, podemos tratar de hacer un mundo con más corazón.

Nos conectamos jóvenes muy distintos, con culturas y estilos de vida diametralmente diferentes, y, sin embargo, tomamos conciencia de que lo que nos une es algo tan inmenso y desbordante que supera toda disparidad y toda distancia: hemos sentido en un momento concreto de nuestra vida la experiencia del Amor de Dios y eso nos mueve a querer que otros se empapen también de este amor, buscando construir un mundo donde el Reino de Dios sea una realidad cercana.

Un deseo que no es otro sino que el soñaban nuestro fundadores Marcelo y Celia, un sueño con más de 135 años que hoy sigue movilizándonos y enlazándonos. Desde este deseo, dedicamos tiempo para reflexionar sobre las injusticias y desigualdades que se dan hoy día en el mundo, con tantas realidades que existen alejadas del Reino de Dios.

Imágenes que nos hacen pensar sobre lo mucho que debemos seguir luchando y el papel tan fundamental que tenemos los jóvenes como motores de cambio por donde entra el futuro.

Los jóvenes terminamos esta reunión con el sentimiento común de pertenencia a una misma familia con una misión esencial para la sociedad actual, y con el ánimo y la esperanza de que somos muchos remando en la misma barca por hacer de nuestro mundo una auténtica casa común donde el amor de Dios sea el fuego que da calor y vida a este hogar.


Karin GORAI, Japan.

It was my first time to interact with Spinora members abroad. Although, unfortunately, I could join only for two hours of the meeting, I enjoyed communicating with the youth having different views about society. Also, we could find some similarities in our thoughts even if we have different cultural background, and live apart from each other on the earth. I appreciate for having such a nice chance to talk people online. I want to discuss more about our future and our dreams together.


Greca Marie Decena, Philippines

International Spinola Youth Meeting Participant - Philippines Marcelo Spinola School Alumna 2021

When I was asked to create an article that will narrate my experience during the first International Spinola Youth Meeting, I was excited because I was given the opportunity to tell my story. But when I started writing, I was puzzled. I didn’t have the idea on how will I articulate my experience that other people would understand the joy that I felt during those times. So I asked myself, “what is it for me?” and all I can say is “celebrate!”

Magdiwang is a Filipino word which means “to celebrate”. It is a beautiful word for me because it speaks joyfulness and prosperity. I chose this word to chronicle my encounter with the Spinola community, as it was a celebration of life and truly a blissful event.

During the session, there were great impartations and realizations that came to me and to the other participants as well. All of us felt delighted and at the same time, we were challenged with the optimism that the youth is the hope of the world. We were united with our  perception that the event  was an opportunity for us to raise our voices, to pursue our advocacies, and to become a public fountain for everyone.

Above all, the International Spinola Youth Meeting was God’s gentle calling for us - a call to emulate our Blessed Mother Mary, who identified herself as a servant of God. We, the Spinola youth, are called to be servants of God, in a way that we will serve the community and the people who are in need through our God-given talents.

The world is filled with setbacks and cruelty. There are some people who are losing hope; some of us are afraid or hesitant in creating a difference; some of us do not know where to start. But then, the encounter reminded me that we must stand in faith and remember what Archangel Gabriel said to Mary, “Rejoice! Do not be afraid, for the Lord is with you.” (see Luke 1:28-31) With that, I am determined that God has prepared me and my fellows into something great and His grace will equip us, so we can employ radical change in the world.


Elandmer O. Villalongja, Philippines

Marcelo Spinola School Alumnus-batch 2020

Throughout the whole meeting I actually felt very lucky to have experienced this kind of encounter. I realized that language cannot keep all of us apart. And that our goal to have a bright future can't be stopped by our differences if we only have the will and urge to shape our tomorrow.

 One of the most significant experience for me is in the small groups. The most frequent individuals that I met are from Angola. And that they are just like us here, they struggle too, they smile, they are incredibly smart and very wise on their answers and insights and that they also wish for a better society. I guess what we need now is to break the stereotypes that we have on different countries that holds us back to embrace one another.

 I am grateful not just for myself, but for the people that I saw who are incredibly selfless and hopeful for the betterment of our society. We live in a world that majority strives for success and wealth without thinking that we left someone behind. I am grateful to God that the good in us is still burning within our hearts. Somehow this experience made me realize that God is not playing chess and that we are the chess pieces on a board we call earth with all the problems and stuggles. Because in chess, someone needs to win and be on top like we all do everyday in our society. We are moving our own chess pieces. God is simply showing us how to play a different game that doesn't need to win and be superior to others. God wants us to play the game of love, where everybody wins and everybody is capable of unconditional love. I really do hope that encounters like this should exist in the educational system. Because honestly, I can't even remember the most frequent quiz I just took but moments like this, STAYS FOREVER.

Thank you again Spinola community and God bless us all.


Rose Christen Clarang, Philippines

Marcelo Spinola School Alumna- batch 2013

I am happy to see new people virtually and hear different perspectives in every concern of the youth and also to see myself again felt this amazing feeling because it's been a long time since I shared and someone listened. I am blessed and thankful because I have given a chance to join this event and indeed a special and unforgettable event before my 2021 ends.

I got to interact and reconnect with God by the people I'm with virtually. God will always make a way to have you back because 7 months before this event happened, I felt lost in my career. This serves as my constant remind that I don't need to be worry because in my new journey I'm not alone anymore, I'm with God this time. Just by saying yes to this, I allow God to have me back and be on track again.

 Thank you sisters and to the whole team who made this event happened.

God bless everyone.


Leslie Astronomo, Philippines

Marcelo Spinola School Alumna-batch 2018

If I were to summarize my whole experience in the International Spinola Youth Meeting it would be down to three words; entertaining, edifying and enlightening this is because the whole encounter was very fun to attend to as we meet and have a meaningful discussion with the Sisters and other young people. Though we have a lot of differences in terms of the place we are situated in, the language we speak and the opinions and ideas we have, it was not the  reason to not to be able to have a very fruitful discussion where we are able to learn new things and widen our understanding about the current social issues that are affecting our lives directly or indirectly. The break out rooms and the activities pave the way to really knowing our fellow youth members from Angola, Spain and Japan where I met such a nice girl that  reminded me of the song Macarena because that is her name and Eva. It was very kind of them to help in translating. As communication is very crucial in a discussion they were generous to offer their talents for us to successfully have an interactive conversation. Also I would commend a friend from Spain, Fran for he was really vocal about his thoughts and he really tried his best to speak in the language where his fellow participants can understand him. From this encounter I realized that we, the youth of today, are very empowered and outspoken, especially in the societal issues that have been present for a long time. We aim for development and improvement in the lives of other people especially those who are less fortunate and are denied of their human rights. We fight for equality as we all are in the eyes of God. I am very grateful for the opportunity to join the encounter because it really broadened my perspective on many things and it made me realize that at this young age we have a lot to offer to help others. To quote from one of my favorite songs, “it only takes a spark to get the fire going”, it only takes a virtual conference to ignite the burning passion of the youth to serve and make a change.


Rein Andre J. Espacio, Philippines

Philippines Participant

When Sr.Elmor called and invited me to join this encounter, I immediately replied and said “Yes” because this is my dream to get to know the Spinola family in the world, and this is just a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity so there’s no reason for me to refuse. On the encounter day, I am very excited and a little bit nervous at the same time because there are so many what if’s in my mind. That day I was always looking at the clock because of my excitement and when I entered the Zoom, I felt so happy yet star struck because of the faces in my screen, I didn’t expect this to happen to me because to think I am just a simple student who loves to know more Blessed Marcelo Spinola and admires the charism of the Spinola Sisters, and, among all students in our school they chose me to join. I am very grateful because even though I transferred to a different school the Spinola Sisters still do remember me. In the encounter, I met new friends from different countries but the one that struck me most is Ms.Macarena “Maca” from Spain because we have the same group as always and she is a kind and a smiling person, I forgot to thank her for being so patient in us in our group sharings but still I hope she knew how grateful I am. This is one of the most unforgettable and treasured moments in my life and I am forever grateful to the Congregation and to all who initiated an planned this event,  I hope that this will not be the first and the last, looking forward for the upcoming events in the Spinola Community and I am always praying for the strength of the Congregation the “Esclavas” ¡Congregación bendita sigue adelante!