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Euro-Mediterranean Province of the Society of Jesus
Jesuits News Youth La Cueva in Palermo, a place for organising projects for young people.

La Cueva in Palermo, a place for organising projects for young people.

La Cueva in Palermo is a place for preparing young people for the future. The project, launched last October, is a place for spiritual and formation journeys, designed according to age and stage of life. Civil service formation courses for Gonzaga boys, scout groups, the Meg and CLC have been hosted at this place. ‘The Wednesday dinner’ is also held her where touching and profound testimonies are shared. The guests included Paolo Borsellino’s daughter, Fiammetta, Luca Casarin, Sabina Guzzanti, who spoke on civil commitment, choices, youth, and spirituality; Francesco from Centro Tau, a place where street children in a difficult neighbourhood are taken care of; Alessandro Ienzi, actor, director and scriptwriter for the commitment and defence of human rights; the commander of the Guardia di Finanza of Palermo; the anthropologist Daniele Ventola, who undertook a two-year journey on foot from Naples to China; Lucia Lauro, responsible for the ‘Cotti in fraganza’ project, a biscuit factory in the juvenile prison of Palermo and the ‘al fresco’ restaurant where ex-prisoners or those who have served their sentence work.

Meetings to inspire the future

“These meetings”, Fr. Francesco Cavallini explains, “have the ability to inspire within young people the desire to involve themselves in community service, to reflect on their own lives and choices, and to develop their dreams and desires.

It is also a popular location for other youth associations to hold their various formation meetings and for groups arriving also from other Italian regions, taking advantage of the simple and friendly welcome, the spiritual accompaniment and the cultural, artistic, social and naturalistic opportunities that Palermo offers.

For four months, the place has welcomed two sisters from Kerson, who are part of the Gonzaga Jesuit high school in Palermo, free of charge.

A place of consolation

“From October 2022 to today there has been an extremely positive turnover,” Cavallini says. Dozens and dozens of people have passed through the place. This is the purpose of the 350 square metres of premises available at our disposal: a place of simple hospitality, a place for meetings and relationships, a place for human and spiritual formation and growth, a space for meditation, creativity and planning, a place of consolation for one’s life. In the future we would like to involve 18-year-olds and university students much more and much better”, while the idea of a Cueva 2 looms on the horizon.

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