Invitation: Genfest Youth Festival In Budapest, Until 2 September

  • 28 Aug 2012 12:55 PM
“Let’s bridge” is the title of the 10th edition of the Genfest , the “celebration” of the youth. Thousands of youth from all over the world, from the most various cultures and ethnic groups, will meet together at Budapest, all moved by the same idea - not only an experience of life but also of social action: unity.

Unity between peoples, cultures and different extracts of society; also between different generations, families, between groups and movements, between Christians of various denominations and faithful of other religions. The ways that we take to build a united world are numerous.

What is a Genfest

The Genfest was born from a prophetic intuition of Chiara Lubich, founder of the Focolare Movement. The Genfest is a meeting of young people who want to show the world that universal brotherhood, a united world, is an Ideal worth living for.

There are thousands of young people in the world who from the ‘60s up till today cry it out with their lives: like Charles Moats, from a black ghetto in Los Angeles (USA), who witnessed brotherhood by giving his life; like Tenerat from Nigeria who went to meet a Muslim friend risking his life, like many of the “angels of the mud” from Genoa or like the young people of Thailand, who during the floods didn’t spare themselves in order to help the victims.

The Genfest, therefore, is a meeting place where activities, projects and initiatives, already in progress, are shared, like “Project Africa” supported for decades, “Skip a meal” in Costa Rica because of the famine in the Horn of Africa, “Good inside and out” in the prison of Milan, etc.

It is a chance to exchange and compare ideas for those who see a background rich in challenges in today’s world, where there is opportunity for change, where the other is placed at the centre.

It is also an invitation to set ourselves in motion with the certainty that each person is a protagonist of their own history and of History. This can have an influence on the great afflictions of our world, contributing to the breakdown of barriers, indifference, prejudices and egoism.

The foundress of the Focolare defined it as “a waterfall of God,” of which the source is the same inspiring spark of the Focolare Movement: the discovery of God-Love 1.

Budapest - for 3 days the “capital of the culture of unity”

From 31 August to 2 September 2012 the city of Budapest, a borderland country between East and West, will become the “capital of the culture of unity”.

The Sport arena (12,500 places) and the bridges that tower over the Danube, will be the main locations where meetings, displays and shows will take place, organised by over 3,000 volunteers from all over the world, who have been working for months to bring the Genfest ahead.

This same organisation of the event is an experience of unity that is continually at the basis of every effort to include, welcome and listen to the others. This leads to true dialogue and builds deeper relationships.

Concrete actions, with a world-wide perspective

Various themes will be tackled: economy, art, politics, social problems, dialogue among the different religions, the highest human values and even ecology and communication. All in an international context to involve everyone present to build, in the first person and also together with the others, bridges of fraternity.

The numbers

We are expecting a presence of 12,500 people coming to the 10th Genfest, from about 100 different nationalities and also 3,000 volunteers.


Thursday 30th August

09:00 – 18:00 Gen Rosso Workshops

16:00 Leave a mark in the city: “Universal Brotherhood Site”.
Location: Elizabeth Square

20:00 – 22:00 show Gen Rosso

Friday 31st August

10:00 Reception at Parliament (at invitation)

14:30 – 17:30 Start-Up: opening feast on the Sport Arena deck area:
Expo presenting Eastern European countries.
Artistic performances and sport activities

17:45 Dinner on the Sport Arena deck area

19:30 – 22:00 Programme in the Sport Arena:
Hungarian “Youth for a United World” welcome all the Genfest participants.
Official greetings from the civil and religious Hungarian authorities
Artistic evening presented by young musicians from the five continents
Saturday 1st September

09:30 – 12:30 1st part of the programme: “Let’s bridge” in the Sport Arena.

The programme unfolds on the basis of a metaphor: the construction of a bridge. Each bridge corresponds to a relationship with another person.
Young people who are committed to universal brotherhood, share their reflections and testimonies on how to build bridges, alternating these moments with choreographies and songs.

12:30 – 14:30 Lunch on the Sport Arena deck area, accompanied by recreational activities

15:30 – 17:00 2nd part of the programme: “Let’s bridge”
The programme continues with the final phases of the ‘bridge building’ metaphor.
A talk from Maria Voce, President of the Focolare Movement, on Universal Brotherhood
Launching of the “United World Project” and operation “Sharing with Africa”

17:30 Departure from the Sport Arena towards the Chain Bridge

22:10 Flash mob on the Chain Bridge

22.30 End of programme

Sunday 2nd September

10:00 – 12:00 Liturgical celebrations of different Churches
Catholic Mass in St. Stephen’s Square

Divine Liturgy – in the Churches of the different Orthodox Patriarchates

Anglican Holy Communion

The Lord’s Supper in a joint Lutheran and Reformed Liturgy

Methodist Service

Baptist Service

Pentecostal Service

10:00 – 12:00 A moment of sharing among young people, belonging to various religions

12:00 Time-Out for Peace at St. Stephen’s Square with all the Genfest participants

12:30 Liberty Square: lunch


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