The International Young Catholic Student (IYCS) is a Catholic action movement of the apostolate of Laity. It is traditionally an evangelization agent in schools and student milieu (secondary and higher education). It has a status of private juridical personality according to canons 298-311 and 321-329 of the Code of Canon law and it is recognized by the Holy See as an International Catholic Organization and the Pontifical Council for the laity is its dicastery. It maintains close links with the Vatican Secretariat of State, in particular the section in charge of relations with the States. In international institutions, IYCS is committed to the United Nations with a consultative status to the Economic and Social Commission (ECOSOC) and operational status at UNESCO. Mainly composed of students in secondary and tertiary institution, IYCS is present in 87 countries.
As a movement of Catholic action, IYCS aims to be “Apostolic (), the evangelization and sanctification of men and the formation of a Christian conscience among them so that they can infuse the spirit of the Gospel into various communities and departments of life. (Council Vat; Decree on the apostolate of the Laity, no. 20). Thus, IYCS aims to transform the student milieu in the light of the Gospel. It has a preferential option for the poor and the oppressed. It educates and trains students to work for solidarity, freedom, justice and peace in the world.
Inspired by the spirituality of Cardinal Joseph Cardijn (the founder of the Young Christian Workers), IYCS has a spirituality of reflection and action that helps young people to the internalization of faith and to match their life to the Gospel. It is through the methodology of the Review of Life, of See-Judge-Act, that YCS provides formation and raises youth engagement in their realities. It is engagement that translates in mobilization and action against poverty, exclusion and injustice in the World and a commitment to be in service of the poorest of the poor.
In the apostolate work of IYCS, there are topics that are important in our agenda. It comes to topics which have direct consequence in the life of pupils and students. That is why, in the image of the international community, we have actively participated in the process of reflection and decision of the Post 2015 Agenda for Development and, now that it is adopted by the UN, we are engaging actively in the Sustainable Development Goals promotion and implementation. The Global Campaign 2015-2019: Protecting our Common Home comes from this commitment. The global campaign has mobilized our national movements in different thematic areas such as the promotion of education, the promotion of peace and conflict resolution in school and academic milieus, the preservation of environment, good governance, solidarity actions, and fraternity.
IYCS is a movement of the Catholic Church for students and by students. Therefore, being full of energy and having the ability of social transformation, the International YCS, in the light of the Gospel and the different local realities, face head on and resolve the respective challenges by using the individual or group application of the Methodology of the Review of Life, See-Judge-Act. More than a method, it is an opportunity for the individual to build a stronger community based on the principles of understanding, solidarity, truth and charity. When the Review of Life is practiced by students, it serves to answer questions of adolescence. It brings goals to their life and creates a space of friendship and common faith in which they can grow. The application of Review of Life leads to the practice of Mercy towards the wounded or tired lives, to those who seek happiness by following wrong paths, showing them the beauty of Jesus which transforms, changes and heals what seemed lost or broken.
It is our honour and privilege to welcome you to our official web page, feel free to join or partner with us as we continue in the process of transformation of behaviours, mentalities and structures which is essential for a fair society, living in harmany with nature.
Contact us or any of our National Movements for any further information you might need.
God bless and keep you
Richard Francis APEH
International Secretary General