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East Timor – Lives and health of youth improved

2 days 8 hours ago
East Timor – Lives and health of youth improved

(ANS – Fatumaca) – Youth attending Don Bosco Technical School Fatumaca in East Timor have access to better nutrition thanks to a partnership between Salesian Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco, and Rise Against Hunger, an international relief organization that provides food and life-changing aid to the world’s most vulnerable. The shipment was made in the third quarter of 2019.

Salesian missionaries provide educational and social development services at the Salesian complex Don Bosco Fatumaca. Poor youth are able to access a range of programs including health services, nutrition, education and general support services. The school also offers room and board for students who need on-campus housing.

Don Bosco Technical School Fatumaca provides vocational education that helps youth gain an education and prepare for the future. More than 250 students, 11 percent of whom are girls, attend the school taking three-year courses in carpentry, mechanics and electronics. Each year there are more than 400 applications for 84 student spots. Final year students are required to design and produce a product that embraces much of what they have learned over the previous three years.

“The Rise Against Hunger meals are supporting us to meet the basic needs of youth in our programs and enabling them to have full stomachs in order to study and have the energy to take part in different activities to prepare for the future,” says Father Gui Da Silva. “We saw many more students graduate this past year and able to get a job immediately or continue on with us for advanced studies. I enjoy being able to follow up with students and see how they are excelling since we have been providing the Rise Against Hunger rice-meals.”

One of the beneficiaries, 20-year-old Geovanio Goncalves, is very grateful to be studying at Don Bosco Technical School. He is working hard to complete his program of study. The Rise Against Hunger meals ensure that he had enough to eat so he can focus on attending school and having the energy to study. Goncalves admitted there were times that he had to fight for just enough to eat because of the political instability on East Timor. He’s glad now that he’s in a supportive environment and working towards a brighter future.

Salesian missionaries in East Timor have been providing programs to help residents recover and rebuild in the wake of a devastating civil war in the country that claimed countless lives, decimated entire communities and resulted in living conditions that are among the worst in the world. Now that the violence has subsided, efforts are focused on helping the poor, restoring hope and providing new opportunities for the future.

Rise Against Hunger partners with Salesian Missions, which works to identify needs and coordinate delivery of 40-foot shipping containers full of meals and supplemented with additional supplies when available. The partnership was developed in 2011 and since that time shipments have been successfully delivered to 20 countries around the globe. The meals and life-saving aid have helped to nourish poor youth at Salesian schools and programs as well as care for those in need of emergency aid during times of war, natural disasters and health crises.

East Timor is home to 1.26 million people and according to the Human Development Index, the country ranked 132 out of 188 for life expectancy, access to education and standard of living in 2018. The World Bank estimates that East Timor has close to 42 percent of its population living in poverty with over one-third of the population regularly experiencing food shortages. In addition, close to 50 percent of the population is illiterate.

Hannah Gregory

Source: Mission Newswire

  • Timor Est
  • TLS TIMOR EST
  • Procure Missionarie
    Gian Francesco Romano

    Ecuador – Solidarity economy is possible: international support for women from Salinas and Simiatug

    2 days 8 hours ago
    Ecuador – Solidarity economy is possible: international support for women from Salinas and Simiatug

    (ANS - Turin) - "Solidaridad Don Bosco", a Spanish Salesian NGO, together with the Andalusian Agency for International Development Cooperation (AACID), is supporting the project "Strengthening the production chain of aromatic plants" in the indigenous communities of Salinas de Guaranda (Ecuador), being brought forward by FFSS, the "Salesian Family of Salinas Foundation". In early January, several leaders of the Spanish NGO went to the site to accompany the project up close.

    For over 20 years, the FFSS has been promoting projects for the most disadvantaged groups in the area. For example, it has promoted the creation of various production companies with criteria of solidarity economy, cooperativism and agro-ecology, and with the brand "El Salinerito" it also markets many Fair Trade products.

    "When we arrived in Salinas together with our colleagues Gabriel Terán and Lina Varón from the Salesian Planning and Development Office in Ecuador, we went to see some of these solidarity economy production companies that employ more than 60 people in Salinas," says Begoña Simal, coordinator of the "Bosco Global" projects.

    European visitors were thus able to learn about the reality of the wool, cheese and chocolate processing workshops, as well as for essential oils and herbal teas, which was built thanks to the support of the Spanish project and which will be completed with all the facilities in the coming months.

    The following day they visited the gardens that gave rise to the project, where the aromatic plants are cultivated. Currently, this activity involves 200 women from the Salinas and Simiatug communities, who are duly trained by specialists on what measures to implement in order to increase produce.

    Unfortunately, the great irregularity and poor state of local road conditions make travel difficult. This is why the women organized themselves to collectively transport what they produce to the processing plant. There, a fair price is paid for the plants harvested and cleaned to proceed to the processing chain, which ends with the creation of herbal teas, tea bags, medicinal creams, essential oils and cosmetics.

    The final product is organic (with no chemicals in any phase of the processing) and with the added value of collaborating in a solidarity economy that supports direct producers and their associations.

    Finally, on Friday 10 January, the inauguration of a production plant took place, with the presence of about 150 women participating in the program who reached Salinas from their communities. The event was also attended by local authorities, the Salesian community behind the FFSS and the inhabitants of Salinas.

    • Ecuador
    • Economia
    • Solidarietà
    • Spagna
    • ONG
    • Donne
      Gian Francesco Romano

      El Salvador – Jairo Alemán fulfills dream of having prosthesis and continuing to work

      3 days 8 hours ago
      El Salvador – Jairo Alemán fulfills dream of having prosthesis and continuing to work

      (ANS - Soyapango) - On Christmas 2019, Canal 12 and its program "Hola El Salvador", in collaboration with the "Universidad Don Bosco", through the Faculty of Sciences of Rehabilitation, fulfilled the dream of a family father, Jairo Aleman, a bus driver who lost part of his left leg due to an infection.

      About 15 years ago, Jairo suffered from a disease called mycetoma, which caused him serious damage to the bones of most of his left leg, until it became necessary to amputate it in May 2018 to prevent the further spread of the infection.

      During this period, Jairo and his wife Elsa Gálvez sought support to obtain a prosthesis, so that Jairo could return to work and support their young daughters; but they failed to get the help they needed.

      Elsa, who learned of the "Hola El Salvador" Christmas special called "12 dreams" - which consisted of making a dream come true for 12 people - wrote to the program's editorial staff, explaining the case of Jairo and his need for a prosthesis to return to his normal life.

      And their dream came true: because the production team of "Hola El Salvador" contacted the Universidad Don Bosco (UDB) to join forces in this venture and produce a prosthesis for Jairo.

      Carlos Zelaya, Director of the Orthotics and Prosthetics School of the UDB, and Elías Chacón, a pupil of the same O & P School, got to work and quickly developed a trans-tibial modular prosthesis, made with duralumin modules and stainless steel.

      Five days before Christmas Eve, Jairo Alemán received his prosthesis as a gift: his and his family's dream came true. His life is now different, he has been given back hope, joy and autonomy to continue his activity.

      The social commitment to the reality that surrounds it means that the Don Bosco University indeed often collaborates with different bodies and organizations, including the media, to change the living conditions of the most needy families.

      Furthermore, the UDB is the only teaching center in the country that has the accreditation of the International Society of Orthotics and Prosthetics.

      • El Salvador
      • CAM CENTRO AMERICA
      • Salute
      • Università
        Gian Francesco Romano

        South Korea – 10th anniversary celebrations of death of Fr John Lee, SDB

        3 days 8 hours ago
        South Korea – 10th anniversary celebrations of death of Fr John Lee, SDB

        (ANS – Seoul) – Ten years since his death, the first celebrations have been held in honor of Fr John Lee, the "Don Bosco of Tonj" (South Sudan). The Eucharist on the 10th anniversary of Fr John Lee 's death (1962-2010) was celebrated in the Salesian High School, Gwangju, on 12 January at 11 am, with the Archbishop of Gwangju, Higino KIM Hee-jung (Don Bosco Past Pupil), as the main celebrant. Also, on the 14th (death anniversary date), the Salesian community in Tonj - South Sudan offered its memorial Mass for Father Lee; on the same day, the “Fr Tae-Seok Lee Memorial Hall” was opened in Busan City, Seo-gu Ward.

        Concelebrating at the Mass in Gwangju were Gwangju Auxiliary Bishop Simon Ok Hyun-jin, Daejon Bishop Lazaro YOO Hong-shik, and twenty other Salesian and diocesan priests.

        The Eucharist saw the involvement of some 400 Catholic, Protestant and Buddhist faithful who came together from all corners of South Korea in order to remember the Salesian Missionary and continue his legacy to serve the poor and share the Gospel.

        In his homily, Archbishop Kim Hee-jung emphasized, “Imitate the love and spirit of sharing, witnessed by Father Lee Tae-Seok, who dedicated his life to his poorest neighbour after the example of Jesus.” In particular, John Mayen (Inje University Medical School), a former student of Fr Lee Tae-Seok, who studied abroad in South Sudanese Tonj, also attended, presenting a memorial service to Fr Lee Tae-Seok and his appreciation for him. John Mayen will soon be an intern doctor. After Mass, participants visited the Damyang Catholic cemetery and offered prayers at Fr John Lee's grave.

        Fr Lee Tae-Seok had been sent to Tonj in South Sudan in June 2001 as a Salesian missionary. While dreaming of friends, educators, doctors, and priests for young people and poor neighbours of Tonj, he returned on a usual family visit to Korea in November 2008, and received a medical check-up. He was diagnosed with late stage colorectal cancer and died on 14 January 2010 at Seoul's St Mary's Hospital. 

        The memorial hall honoring Fr John Lee, celebrating Don Bosco in South Sudan, was opened in his hometown of Busan metropolitan city on 14 January 2020.

        In the afternoon, Busan Seo-gu Office said that the opening ceremony was held at the Memorial Hall of Fr John Lee, located behind his birthplace.

        More than 300 people attended the event, including Gong Han-soo (Chief of Busan Seo-gu Office), Oh Geo-don (Mayor of Busan), Busan's Catholic Bishop Joseph Son Sam-seok, and Fr Timothy Choi Won-cheol, SDB, Provincial of Korea.

        The memorial hall is a four-store building. It consists of a café on the ground floor, a program room and office on the second floor, a memorial hall on the third floor, and a multi-purpose hall on the fourth. The memorial hall on the third floor displays some 60 relics that reveal Fr Lee’s holy life and a number of three-dimensional models on his dedicated life in Sudan’s Tonj. It plans to introduce other artifacts in turn through special exhibitions in the future.

        The management of the entire memorial hall is conducted by the Salesian society of South Korea. The Korean Province states, “We will carry out various activities to inherit and spread the three spirits of Father John Lee: Service, Joy, and Sharing.”

        “The Cafe Friends” on the first floor will be used as a place to help the disadvantaged youth, by saving some of its profits and to support the self-reliance of the youth who dream of being “a chef.”

        By Fr Samuel Yoo Myeong-il and KOR Social Communication Office

        {gallery}KOR - Anniversari don Lee 2020{/gallery}

        • Corea del Sud
        • KOR KOREA
        • John Lee TaeSuk
        • Anniversari
          Gian Francesco Romano

          Papua New Guinea – Don Bosco still changes lives of youngsters

          3 days 8 hours ago
          Papua New Guinea – Don Bosco still changes lives of youngsters

          (ANS – Port Moresby) – “I dropped out of high school, lived the life of a drug addict for 3 years and had an attitude problem. Then to make ends meet, I resorted to selling betel nut. As the days rolled on, I often wondered, 'What will I do with my life?' One day I was encouraged by Fr Jess Escala (former Principal) to study in the Don Bosco Technical School. At Don Bosco, I received what I needed to succeed: Punctuality, Counselling and Time Management. I then evaluated my life and made a big decision.” This is Xavier Loipio, 33 years old, now a devout Catholic. As he states, “DON BOSCO was the light at the end of my tunnel to become an outstanding citizen, a successful and professional skills person and a role model in my community.”

          I graduated from Don Bosco Technical School, Gabutu, in 2009, in Maintenance Fitting and Machining (MFM). I then started my career as a Marine Fitter at PNG Dockyard Ltd. I have completed 10 years of work in the industry. Of course, I faced several challenges and managed to conquer these and continue my endeavour. Being in the industry for this period of time does not guarantee that I know everything. I am still learning and continuously upgrading myself.

          With the skills I acquired at Don Bosco Technical School, I went on to obtain my tradesman certificate in MFM trade at Port Moresby Technical College, Certificate III in Machine Fitting in Mechanical Trade at the Australian Pacific Technical Coalition (APTC), and an a Advanced Diploma – I.V.Q Level 3 in Oil and Gas Maintenance at Kumul Petroleum Academy, South Pacific Employment Institution.

          One of my greatest accomplishment has been as President of the Australia Pacific Technical Coalition Alumni PNG from 2017-18. During my time with APTC, I met educated professionals in the TVET sector, Education sector, and very important people at APTC, like Helen Leeson, Chief Academic Officer, Dr Brad Shaw, Country Directory-PNG Campus, and David Pepyet, former SVTA for Engineering. These are the people who have inspired me to become someone in life. I am grateful to all of them. I am also one of the pioneers of Kumul Petroleum Academy/South Pacific Employment Institution as well as the 4th Batch of ExxonMobil training program. With my leadership qualities, I am presently working as a Mechanical Technician Team Leader with Comlek Electrical Engineering Ltd, an Australian-based company.

          Maintenance, Fitting and Machining is a rapidly evolving field. One of the most exciting aspects of MFM trade is how it overlaps so many industries. This means you can find work in any industry you like – the possibilities are endless. One of my biggest challenges is adjusting to the new workflow and creating a new type of report to present to my supervisor.

          Looking back, the two most important things that I have learned from Don Bosco is time management and punctuality. I would always arrive 5 or 10 minutes before the start of school and was never absent from school. These two important values opened me to great skills.

          Two skills that I value the most are: Trade Drawing and the ability to read technical drawings. Because of these skills, I am always one step ahead of others. If you know how to read or interpret a drawing, your work will be easy. I want to express my gratitude to Don Bosco and my instructors for teaching me these skills.

          Two people who have played a major part in my life are: Mr Martin Dai and Mr George Isoaimo. These two people have been there every step of my way till the day I graduated. They disciplined me and encouraged me to be the best in life. I did make mistakes but I learned from those mistakes. By learning from those mistakes, I was able to progress in my life.

          My encouragement to the Bosconians is to learn as much as you can because everything in this really technical world is right where you are studying now. Your dreams and goals in life are achieved through hard work. Do not go where the path may lead you, instead where there is no path, leave a trail. In that way, you will inspire others to follow you.

          Our families, friends and community and the experiences we have contributed to our sense of who we are and how we view the world. Understand how God moves in your life. Trust in God and never give up the hope of heaven. This sort of hope provides me an anchor that keeps me grounded and firm in truth and in my pursuit of holiness.

          Without Don Bosco, I would not have been able to accomplish these things. I am eternally grateful to Don Bosco for believing in me when I didn’t believe in myself.

          Source: AustraLasia

          • Papua Nuova Guinea
          • PGS PAPUA NUOVA GUINEA E ISOLE SALOMONE
          • Formazione Professionale
          • Testimonianza
            Gian Francesco Romano

            RMG – Appointment of Provincial of "Spain - St James Major" Province: Fr Fernando García Sánchez

            4 days 8 hours ago

            (ANS - Rome) – On Tuesday 14 January, during the General Council's winter plenary session, the Rector Major, Fr Á.F. Artime, with the consent of his Council, appointed Fr Fernando García Sánchez as Provincial of the “Spain - St James Major” for the 2020-2026 term.

            Fr Fernando García Sánchez was born in Madrid on September 22, 1974. He received the vocations call while a student of the Salesian Institute of Estrecho and participated in the oratory activities on the weekends. Beginning his novitiate year in 1992, he made his religious profession on August 16, 1993, in Arevalo.

            After the years of Theology in Madrid-Carabanchel, he was assigned to Puertollano, carrying out the position of Pastoral Coordinator for two years. In 2003, he went to Rome, to the Salesian Pontifical University, and received his Bachelor's degree in Theology and carried out youth ministry studies. On 19 June 2004, he was ordained a priest at Paseo de Extremadura, Madrid.

            His first assignment as a priest was at the house of Soto del Real where he spent 6 years as Pastoral Coordinator, Director of the Youth Center and Sports Coordinator. In the 2010-11 academic year, he was appointed Director of the Aranjuez house. He participated in the 27th General Chapter and was appointed a member of the Provincial Council. At the end of his fifth year in Aranjuez, he was asked to accept the appointment as Director of the Atocha house. After a year of service, he took over the Coordination of the Schools of the Province, a position he still holds.

            The Salesian Province "Spain – St James Major", of which Fr Fernando García will be Provincial, is based in Madrid and groups together the Salesian works in Asturias, Cantabria, Castilla La Mancha, Castile and León, Galicia, La Rioja, Madrid, Navarre and Basque Countries.

            The SSM Province has 523 Salesians, the largest in terms of number of religious. The Salesians animate 54 communities, manage 36 institutes, 22 Vocational Training Centers, 44 youth centers, 30 parishes and more than 70 social intervention projects in social platforms. The educative-pastoral work is carried out by 6,000 educators and animators who take care of about 64,000 young people in the various Salesian works.

            The new Provincial, who succeeds Fr Juan Carlos Pérez Godoy, in office since June 2014, will be installed in May 2020.

            • RMG CASA GENERALIZIA
            • SSM SPAGNA SAN GIACOMO MAGGIORE
            • Nomine
            • Ispettori
              Gian Francesco Romano

              Spain – Don Bosco in Antarctica? As Patron of "Army Specialist Corps"

              4 days 8 hours ago
              Photo: Dr. Jesús Anzano Lacarte

              (ANS - Seville) - How far and wide does Don Bosco go? Certainly up to the more than 130 countries on the five continents where the Salesians are present today. What if you wanted to go even further? Well, if we were to go to Antarctica, we'd also find a small image of Don Bosco there too. This photo was taken 15,073 kilometers from Spain as Don Bosco is present as patron of the military contingent that accompanies environmental researchers on the Antarctic continent.

              "Don Bosco motivates us to be respectful for the protection of our planet," they say after sending the photo. But what is it that brought Don Bosco down there? The fact of being a "multidisciplinary" patron.

              According to the Spanish Military Association (AME), he is the patron saint of the Specialist Corps of the Ground Army and of the fundamental specialties of this corp: Electronics and Telecommunications, Maintenance and Assembly of Equipment, Electricity, IT, Automotive, Aircraft Maintenance, Maintenance of Weapons and Materials, Maintenance of Vehicles, Electronic and Telecommunication Maintenance, Welding, Electricity and Assembly of Equipment.

              How did this initiative come about? The first seminar on the Corps of Specialists was held at the Navacerrada Residence (Madrid) on 27 and 28 November, 1998. Among other things, the convenience and the need to have a specific Patron who could serve as an element of unity and generator of the spirit of the Corps was demonstrated; hence, for the elections, the existing traditions were reviewed and, taking care to preserve the ones with which the majority of the staff members of the Corps of Specialists identified, most having been students of the Professional Institutes, centers that very often venerated St John Bosco, patron of Vocational Training Schools, the choice was made.

              On January 24, 2000, in a communication from the Army Chief of Staff, St. John Bosco was officially designated as Patron of the Specialist Corps of the Ground Army, after his approval in the corresponding act, issued by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, and sanctioned by Msgr. José Manuel Estepa Llaurens, then Military Ordinary of Spain.

              Every year the Specialists of the Ground Army celebrate Don Bosco on 1 February.

              Source: AME

              • Spagna
              • Don Bosco
                Gian Francesco Romano

                Tanzania – "Karibu, Rebecca": testimony of volunteer who tries to do her best

                4 days 8 hours ago

                (ANS – Didia) – “One thing I quickly learned about Tanzania is the incredibly welcoming nature of the people here. Since I arrived every person I have met has welcomed me like a family member, whether it be into their home, shop or school. 'Karibu' ('welcome' in Kiswahili) must be the most common word here and this welcoming nature, from what I can see, is a strong part of the culture here, and is something I am very appreciative of.” This is Rebecca, a youngster serving with Great Britain Volunteering Salesian project “Bosco Volunteer Action” (BOVA). This is her first letter from Didia, Tanzania.

                It has already been nearly 3 months since I was getting on a plane headed to Tanzania, wondering what was ahead of me for the next 9 months - here I would like to share with you some of my experience so far.

                The early starts began as soon as I arrived in my placement in Didia, when I got up for mass at 6:00 am. I was welcomed by hundreds of students after mass and had to quickly adjust to the greetings that were aimed at me. There are countless greetings in Kiswahili and the first minute of your conversation can be composed of greeting someone in about 5 different ways, something I had to adjust to. My first few days were spent meeting lots of students, each one greeting me with a 'Karibu Tanzania', 'feel at home', 'you are so welcome here'. If it wasn't for the kindness of the students and the Salesian community here, my first weeks would have been a lot more difficult. 

                When I arrived in Don Bosco Secondary School in Didia, there were two other international volunteers in the school. Having someone to show me around and help me to settle in during the first few weeks was invaluable. The ability to share experiences, whether challenging or joyful, with someone who understands your exact situation is something I really value and this took away some of my anxieties in the beginning.

                Another thing which helped me to settle was being in a community. I appreciate that we can eat together and pray together every day - this made me feel part of the community immediately after I arrived and was an important part of what I had imagined of my volunteer experience. I am grateful that I chose a Salesian organisation as I think the community spirit here is unique to the congregation.

                Don Bosco Secondary School Didia

                Don Bosco Didia is a secondary school in the North of Tanzania which takes students through GCSEs (O-levels) and A-levels - so the students range from about 12-20 years old. The school is compromised of around 1,200 students (the majority being boarding students with the minority day students coming from the village). One massive difference I noticed immediately on arrival to the school is the timetable of the students here. They wake up at 4:30 am to study before mass at 6:00 am. They then have lessons from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, games after school, rosary, supper and then study again until 10:00 pm. To think that I used to complain about getting up at 7:30 am for school is laughable! Never once have I heard a student complain about their early starts. 

                As the school is a Salesian school, the students are given time for games every day. They play volleyball, netball, basketball, handball and even frisbee. Soon after I arrived was 'Nyrere day' a public holiday commemorating the death of Julius Nyrere, the first president of Tanzania. On this day sports teams from 11 different schools in the area came to compete in basketball and football tournaments. It was a long and very hot day in which many games were played, a lot of food was eaten and a lot of fun was had by all. It was one of the first celebrations I experienced in the community and a great way to get to know the students. I enjoyed the day - except for the sunburn that followed - and seeing our dedicated basketball team beat a very well-practised team with a good reputation was a particular highlight for me. 

                The majority of our basketball team here are sponsored students. Although school fees here are not high compared to other private schools in the country, many students coming from villages struggle to keep up with their school fee payments and so being sponsored is their only chance to remain here - where their chance of learning English to a high standard is much higher than in free government schools. I have even heard of students bringing a pig in exchange for their school fees when they were unable to pay.

                The month after I arrived the students began exams. Each year group had exams, although only the Form 2 and Form 4 classes sat official national examinations. On speaking to the students about their exams, I was surprised by their calm approach. One student even told me, “I'm not worried, I'm God's hands” - a mentality I wish I'd had when I was in their position! I think I was more worried than the students were when the armed officers showed up to ensure no cheating was going on. During December the students have holidays, many go home and help their families with cultivating or work before the school year starts again in January.

                A Salesian community

                Our Salesian community is made up of the Father Rector (in charge of everything in the community), the administrator, the Headmaster and our Salesian brothers. We also have connections to the other congregations in the area and so we often get to celebrate with priest and sisters from the next village which is always fun. In our community, we have morning and evening prayer together, as well as supper. The early mornings are a challenge but I have started to appreciate the daily routine we have here and it helped me to feel part of the community straight away.

                The many celebrations we have here as a community have become some of my favourite memories of my time so far. The days are filled with music and dancing. Students prepare their 'items' - usually lip-synched songs or dance groups and perform them in front of everybody. When some of the numbers go on for too long everybody claps - a sign of appreciation usually but in this case meaning that they've heard enough and the act goes off. I've promised myself I will take part in an item before I leave, I think the students would have a good laugh at my dancing and hopefully I wouldn't be clapped off stage. Within a week of my arrival, two full-day celebrations had taken place so I came at the right time! It was a really good opportunity to get to know students and experience some of the culture here right away.

                My role here so far

                Soon after arriving, I started to attend English structure lessons led by one of the sisters from our community. Seeing how she went about teaching the lessons was helpful to me. I wasn't expecting to teach a class by myself so soon after my arrival, so when Sister asked me to take the lesson by myself after the first few days, I was very nervous - having just left school with no teaching qualifications I definitely doubted my teaching abilities. The class I was teaching was a Pre-Form 1 class, meaning that it was their first year of learning English. This added to the challenge as the students found it very difficult to understand me and I had to quickly adapt in order to express what I meant. However, after two or three lessons I felt much more comfortable and started to enjoy the freedom of teaching a class on my own. I would say that now I am getting used to the trials and tribulations of the class and can deal confidently with any problems that arise - including one day when a number of students decided to bring grasshoppers into the lesson with them! The new school year is beginning in January and I look forward to seeing how I will fit in to the teaching of the new classes that will arrive, I hope I can be a good help to them.

                During lunchtime, the students enjoy playing guitar. I spend lunchtimes with them, passing on the little guitar skill I have. Seeing them playing and encouraging beginners to play, has been something I have really enjoyed so far and I would like to continue this in the new year.

                One thing that has proved important to me is being on the same level as the students, spending as much time with them as possible. This has included attending mass and rosary, being with them during time for games, going to the farm on weekends, being present during study time, but mainly just talking with them, getting to know them, what their interests are and what is going on in their life. This has allowed me to connect with students and not be a distant figure but someone who is there for them throughout the day. One challenge I have faced is trying to balance my time in order to maintain enough energy to keep up with the students, whilst still spending as much time as possible with them. This has proven difficult with the busy schedule but is something I will continue to work on.

                My perception of the impact I can have has changed since I arrived. I realise that I can't have a life-changing impact on everyone in the school but if I try my best every day and put all my energy into doing as much as I can to help the students, then I know I have done my best. The ability for the students to learn about another culture and speak more English is also something that is more valuable than I realised. Father Vincent told us that our presence here with the students is the most important thing and that really stuck with me and helped me to put things into perspective. The time we get to reflect during prayers has allowed me to think about my impact and evaluate each day. In this way, the spiritual side of my experience here has been beneficial to my work. 

                I recently read “The Beat Goes On”, a collection of memories of Sean Devereux, so I am truly inspired and ready to start the new year off in the right way.

                Source: Salesians GBR

                • Tanzania
                • AFE AFRICA EST
                • Volontariato
                • GBR GRAN BRETAGNA
                  Gian Francesco Romano

                  RMG – CG28: video on Working Tool available online

                  5 days 8 hours ago
                  RMG – CG28: video on Working Tool available online

                  (ANS - Rome) With just over a month to the opening of the 28th General Chapter (GC28), the Department for Social Communication makes available to all Salesians - not just the capitulars - and to all concerned, a video to learn about and understand in detail what the Chapter's "working tool" is and how it shall be used.

                  The Work Tool was designed by the two Precapitular Commissions appointed by the Rector Major - one on the Chapter's theme, the other on its juridical aspects - with the precise purpose of being the basis for the discernment that will have as subjects the over 240 Capitulars who, from February 16 on April 4, 2020, meet in Turin-Valdocco to discuss the question together: "Which Salesians for today's young people?"

                  It is the result of the summaries of the Provincial Chapters held in recent months in the Salesian circumscriptions (Provinces and Vice Provinces) all over the world and will act as a frame of reference for the work of the Chapter Members.

                  It is structured around the three fundamental themes of the GC28:

                  - priority of the mission with young people;
                  - profile of today's Salesian;
                  - mission shared between Salesians and lay people.

                  For each thematic area, the Work Tool proposes a three-stage discernment itinerary, according to the scheme already used at the last Synods of Bishops promoted by Pope Francis to: recognize, interpret and choose.

                  Since it activates reflection processes on issues relevant to the life of the Congregation, the Work Tool is not to be considered a document limited exclusively to the work of the GC28: it can in fact also be used in parallel and subsequently as a platform accessible to all Salesian Provinces and communities.

                  The video on the CG28 working tool is available on ANSChannel in the various language channels.

                  • RMG CASA GENERALIZIA
                  • CG28
                  • Comunicazione Sociale
                    Gian Francesco Romano

                    RMG – New Provincial of Czech Republic appointed

                    5 days 8 hours ago
                    RMG – New Provincial of Czech Republic appointed

                    (ANS - Rome) - On Friday 10 January, as part of the work of the General Council's winter plenary session, the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, with the agreement of his council, appointed Fr Martin Hobza as Provincial of the “St. John Bosco” Province of the Czech Republic for the six-year term, 2020-2026.

                    Fr Martin Hobza was born in Trebic on March 1, 1970, in what was then Czechoslovakia; he entered the Salesian novitiate in Hodonovice in 1991, made his first religious vows on August 16, 1992, and perpetual vows on July 14, 1997. He was ordained a priest in Brno on June 27, 1998.

                    From 2000 to 2007, he worked at the "Žabovřesky" Salesian house in Brno, where he served as Councilor, Director of the Oratory and Vicar; he was then Director of the "St Frances de Sales" center in Ceské Budejovice for four years (2007-2011); since 2011, he has been living in Prague at the "Kobylisy" center, where he was first Director (from 2011 to 2016), and then Parish Priest and Councilor - positions he still holds.

                    He is currently also a Councilor of the Czech Province - a position he had already held between 2005 and 2011.

                    • RMG CASA GENERALIZIA
                    • CEP REPUBBLICA CECA
                    • Nomine
                      Gian Francesco Romano

                      Haiti – 12 January 2020: commemoration, 10 years after earthquake

                      6 days 8 hours ago
                      Haiti – 12 January 2020: commemoration, 10 years after earthquake

                      (ANS - Port-au-Prince) – On Sunday, 12 January 2020, the Salesians of the "Blessed Philip Rinaldi" Vice Province of Haiti gathered around their Provincial, Fr Jean-Paul Mésidor, to celebrate the Eucharist in the chapel of St John Bosco in Pétion-Ville, a suburb of Port-au-Prince. The celebration was an opportunity to remember the approximately 250,000 people, including three Salesians, who died in the earthquake of January 12, 2010.

                      During the homily, Fr Mesidor pointed out that the physical signs of the earthquake are no longer clearly visible, yet everyone remembers it as if it were yesterday. "Have we really learned the extremely hard lesson that came to us in those few seconds? [...] Certainly, through this disaster, an appeal has also been made to us. A call to be faithful to our responsibility," he said.

                      After the Mass, a ceremony was organized by the Rinaldi Foundation, the Planning and Development Office of the Vice Province of Haiti (HAI). It served to deliver plaques as a sign of gratitude and recognition to several organizations and individuals who have collaborated in these ten years in favor of the poorest. These institutions and people are:

                      1. Via Don Bosco (Belgium)

                      2. Misiones Salesianas (Spain)

                      3. Don Bosco Mondo (Germany)

                      4. Coopération Espagnole (Spain)

                      5. Caritas (Spain)

                      6. Vis (Italy)

                      7. Don Bosco Mission (Germany)

                      8. Jugend Hilfe Welweit (Germany)

                      9. Jovenes Y Desarollo (Spain)

                      10. J.E.W.

                      11. Missioni Don Bosco (Italy)

                      12. Salesian Missions (USA)

                      13. Fondazione Don Bosco Nel Mondo (Italy)

                      14. Asbl Farnières Haiti (Belgium)

                      15. Fundacion Don Bosco (Dominican Republic)

                      16. Soutien Aux Oeuvres Salésiennes D’Haiti (France)

                      17. Missieprocuur Don Bosco (Netherlands)

                      18. Secours Catholique

                      19. Fr Pascual Chavez Villanueva, SDB

                      20. Mons. Ducange Sylvain, SDB

                      21. Fr Jacques Charles, SDB

                      22. Fr Orlando Gonzales, SDB

                      The Rinaldi Foundation has, furthermore, published a catalog to present the main results achieved after 10 years, as well as the challenges and perspectives still to be pursued. The director of the Foundation, Fr Victor Auguste, said the following: "In this sense, on behalf of the Salesians of Don Bosco in Haiti, the management of the Rinaldi Foundation presents its gratitude first of all to Fr Pascual Chávez Villanueva, at the time Rector Major, who a month after the earthquake visited the country and then mobilized our entire congregation to support Don Bosco's work in Haiti. This has been done! We are very grateful to the whole Salesian world.

                      Our gratitude then goes to all our supporters and benefactors, to our collaborators in Italy, Spain, Germany, Belgium, France, Austria, Switzerland, the United States, Canada, to all the countries of the Interamerica Region, the Dominican Republic and Haiti.

                      In presenting our gratitude to you for these ten years of solidarity and collaboration, we also announce that we continue to count on your support to carry out this noble task of education and formation, which is constantly renewed."

                      {gallery}HAI - 10 anni terremoto 2010-2020{/gallery}

                      • Haiti
                      • HAI HAITI
                      • Disastri e Calamità Naturali
                      • Anniversari
                      • Pascual Chávez
                      • Procure Missionarie
                      • Solidarietà
                        Gian Francesco Romano

                        RMG – Appointment of new Provincial of Venezuela's "San Luca" Province

                        6 days 8 hours ago

                        (ANS - Rome) - On Friday 10 January 2020, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major, with the consensus of the General Council, appointed Fr Rafael Bernardo Montenegro Latouche as Provincial of the "San Luca" Province of Venezuela.

                        Fr Montenegro Latouche was born on September 30, 1966, in Valencia, state of Carabobo, son of Rafael Ubaldo Montenegro and Elina Isabel Latouche. He studied at the "Don Bosco" Salesian Institute in Valencia, where he got to know the Salesian charism and spirituality. He completed his novitiate year in San Antonio de Los Altos, made his first religious profession on 7 September 1985 and perpetual profession on 11 July 1992. He was ordained a priest on 3 June 1995.

                        In 2000, he was appointed Councilor of the Salesian Postnovitiate of Macarena Sur-Los Teques. In 2001, he began his studies at the Salesian Pontifical University of Rome and was subsequently appointed Director and Master of Novices (2006). He is currently Director of the Salesian Theologate "San Luca" in Macaracuay.

                        At the provincial level, he was several times Director (2003-2006 and 2010-16) and Delegate for Formation (2003-2007 - 2018, current post).

                        Fr Montenegro Latouche will take office as Provincial of Venezuela on February 8, in the presence of Fr Timothy Ploch, Regional Councilor for Interamerica, and Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major, visiting the country at said time. A few days later, Fr Montenegro Latouche flies to Turin to take part in the 28th General Chapter of the Congregation, scheduled from 16 February to 4 April 2020 in Valdocco; its theme: "Which Salesians for today's young people?"

                        "We send our congratulations to the new Provincial and raise our prayers to Jesus the Good Shepherd so that he may wisely carry out the new mission entrusted to him," wrote the leaders of the Salesian Family.

                        • RMG CASA GENERALIZIA
                        • Nomine
                        • Ispettori
                          Gian Francesco Romano

                          Italy – Ecological Days of Don Bosco Genoa: service to city and young

                          6 days 8 hours ago
                          Italy – Ecological Days of Don Bosco Genoa: service to city and young

                          (ANS - Genoa) - The issue of ecology is gaining increasing interest in public opinion among people of all ages and nationalities. The Salesian world is also moving in this direction with the "Don Bosco Green Alliance", a global network that unites Salesian works active in defending the environment. Since October 2019, the Sampierdarena Institute has also been part of this green alliance. To become part of it, it has made three specific commitments:

                          - reduce waste production and improve its separation and recycling;
                          - raise awareness among young people who attend schools and the oratory;
                          - “get out” of the Salesian center with concrete and visible actions.

                          From words to action and deeds on October 12, when the first ecological day took place. About 50 young people participated voluntarily, namely the children of the Community for Unaccompanied Foreign Minors and several students from the Vocational Training Center.

                          Meeting point at 8:30 am at the oratory. At the beginning, the participants received overalls, gloves, masks and cleaning tools. The collaboration with AMIU (the company that deals with the collection and management of waste in Genoa) concerned not only the supply of these materials, but also the choice of places to clean: the gardens near the train station.

                          Divided into two groups and coordinated by a supervisor, the young people set to work with enthusiasm, discovering a lot of waste and being indignant at times for the poor behaviour of some people littering public places that would deserve to be better kept. Dozens of garbage bags full of rubbish were the spoils of the morning, which happily ended in the oratory with focaccia and drinks.

                          On November 16, an encore with an even greater number of participants - as many as 60 - and a new space in which to act: the Castagna cemetery. The most neglected areas were thoroughly cleaned up, arousing the admiration of various people who had gone to visit their dead.

                          The third ecological day took place on 12 December and, a few days later, the mayor, Marco Bucci, and the deputy mayor Stefano Balleari, awarded all the boys and girls of the active citizenship courses developed during 2019.

                          "The experience of the Ecological Days is something that we want to re-propose and that we would like to become a reference model," explained the  Salesian center's Director, Fr Maurizio Verlezza. "We care about the city, but above all we care about young people, who can grow, wherever they will go, with this sensitivity and this respect for the city in which they live."

                          The next ecological day has already been scheduled for next Saturday, January 18th. 

                          {gallery}Italia - ICC - Giornate ecologiche 2020{/gallery}

                          • Italia
                          • ICC ITALIA CIRCOSCRIZIONE CENTRALE
                          • Ambiente
                          • Creato
                            Gian Francesco Romano

                            Italy – Yamaha and Salesians together to give young people more opportunities

                            1 week 2 days ago
                            Italy – Yamaha and Salesians together to give young people more opportunities

                            (ANS - Sesto San Giovanni) - Forming and training young people to enter the world of work in the automotive/motorsports-related field is a traditional activity of Salesian education. In this sense, the Vocational Training Center of the "Don Bosco Social Works" in Sesto San Giovanni, near Milan, is a prime example.

                            To offer young people a concrete opportunity to accessing the specific labour market related to engines, the Salesian structure has for years started important collaborations in the motor-related/automotive sector where students, once the cycle of studies is completed, may enter more easily.

                            Here, in this case, at the end of 2019, the Sesto San Giovanni institute invested further in the sector, namely in the field of motorcycles, by creating a specialization for the assistance and repair of two-wheeled vehicles thanks to a prestigious collaboration with the "Yamaha Technical School".

                            Specifically, the famous motorcycle company has undertaken to collaborate with CNOS – FAP, the body that coordinates Salesian Vocational Training in Italy, to qualify its tools and instrumental resources, such as laboratories, classrooms, technical equipment ... and to raise the professional, technological and operational skills of both its formators and students.

                            During the fourth year of study, the best students will be offered the opportunity to carry out training internships at the company itself and in the Yamaha Assistance Network so as to create and foster the conditions for their subsequent inclusion into the industry.

                            "We want to create professional technical figures trained with Yamaha standards and able to answer to a rapidly changing market, thanks to a path during which school and company work together" is the viewpoint of the Japanese company, expressed by the Yamaha Country Manager for Italy, Andrea Colombi.

                            For his part, Fr Elio Cesari, the center's Director, also observed: "The Don Bosco Social Works of Sesto is the largest Salesian school in Europe, and is characterized by the extremely high level of preparation of its students and is one of the few to have a specialization dedicated to two-wheeled vehicles. The collaboration with Yamaha thus becomes the possibility for our children to work with cutting-edge equipment and, at the same time, be able to live an educational experience also on a human level, thanks to the rapport, team work and sharing of a value system."

                            In short, after those started with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Cnh Industrial, Aci, and many other companies, the collaboration with Yamaha Motor Italia enriches the range of proposals by the Salesians aimed at young people for their inclusion in the world of work in the motor industry.

                            • Italia
                            • Formazione Professionale
                            • ILE ITALIA LOMBARDO EMILIANA
                            • Moto
                              Gian Francesco Romano

                              Philippines – Visible sign of Don Bosco Alumni: Bosconian car-plate and “Exallievi@40”

                              1 week 2 days ago
                              Philippines – Visible sign of Don Bosco Alumni: Bosconian car-plate and “Exallievi@40”

                              (ANS – Manila) – St. John Bosco considered his boys as part of his Salesian Family. Now the Boys of Don Bosco are the Past Pupils. The Past Pupils are a fruit of the Salesian Mission, a gift of richness to humanity and a powerful force acting like leaven within the world. Entering the 150th Anniversary Year of the Don Bosco Past Pupils 1870-2020, we might be inspired by some creative initiatives of our Past Pupils. The first inspiring story is from the Philippines.

                              All over the world is it possible to recognize four types of commitment of Don Bosco Past Pupils

                              • Those who live their Past Pupil identity as a FACT OF LIFE. These are Past Pupils, who build their identity only around this fact.
                              • Those who live their Past Pupil identity as a GRACE. These are Alumni, who have been touched by the education of Don Bosco, live with a sense of gratitude.
                              • Those who live their Past Pupil identity as a MISSION. These are the Alumni, who participate in the activities of the Past Pupils in their Alma Mater or Federation.
                              • Those who live their Past Pupil identity as LIFE PROJECT, by committing their talents, time and even resources in the mission of Don Bosco.

                              For the 40th anniversary of the National Federation, the Filipino Alumni prepared not only the charity and celebration events, but also a nation-wide action, through issuing BOSCONIAN PRIDE COMMEMORATIVE (CAR) PLATE to the 40th Federation Anniversary: the Plate was issued with the official permission of the authorities, to be attached on Top of the original plate. Together was released also a commemorative sticker (EXALLIEVI@40).

                              The 40th-anniversary commemoration culminates in 2020 with the 150th Anniversary of Don Bosco Past Pupils Foundation on June 24, 1870, and, on the regional level, with the East Asia - Oceania (EAO) Congress of Don Bosco Past Pupils in Tokyo, Japan, on 4-6 December 2020.

                              Source: AustraLasia

                              {gallery}Filippine - Targa e adesivo 2020{/gallery}

                              • Filippine
                              • Exallievi
                                Gian Francesco Romano

                                RMG – Salesian Historical Research - RSS n° 73

                                1 week 2 days ago
                                RMG – Salesian Historical Research - RSS n° 73

                                (ANS - Rome) - Relating to July-December 2019, issue 73 of Ricerche Storiche Salesiane (RSS), the Salesian bimonthly magazine of religious and civil history, has been published by the Salesian Historical Institute (ISS). Among the main contributions, we'd like to point out three essays: the third part of the study on "Kristu Jyoti College" of Bangalore; the essay on the cardinal protectors of the Salesian Congregation; and the first years of formation of Fr Mario Marega, a fundamental figure of the Salesian mission in Japan.

                                The three essays are in the STUDIES sector:
                                Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore: storia e significato dellapertura della prima istituzione salesiana nellarcidiocesi di Bangalore parte III, i.e., “Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore: history and significance of the opening of the first Salesian institution in the archdiocese of Bangalore - part III”, is the contribution of Fr Thomas Anchukandam. It presents the evolution of the institute in accordance with the agreements of the Second Vatican Council and follows the directives of the 19th General Chapter of the Salesian Congregation, achieving a development appropriate to the times and in line with the socio-cultural and religious context of India.

                                The study I cardinali protettori della Congregazione Salesiana (1879-1970). Cenni storici di unistituzione singolare, i.e., Cardinal protectors of the Salesian Congregation (1879-1970). Historical notes of a singular institute”, by Fr Miguel Canino Zanoletty, analyzes an institute that played an important role in the first decades of the Congregation's life.

                                Gli anni viennesi del Giovane Mario Marega 1916-1918: futuro missionario salesiano in Giappone, i.e. The Viennese years of the young Mario Marega 1916-1918: future Salesian missionary in Japan” is the research paper written by Stanisław Zimniak. The author has managed to reconstruct a period of life of a great Salesian, so far little known, but central to Salesian history and also to the knowledge of Japanese history, as he was a passionate scholar of history and culture of the Empire of the Rising Sun. Research shows that his Viennese years were marked by an intense religious life and made him decide to become a Salesian.

                                In the SOURCES sector: two original texts are presented 

                                Quarantacinque giorni sulle rive del fiume Azopardo i.e.,Forty-five days on the banks of the Azopardo River”, tells the story of an expedition sent to an unknown land to end the progressive extinction of the natives in southern Patagonia.

                                Regolamento della Compagnia del SS. Sacramento, i.e., Regulations of the Compagnia del SS. Sacramento, established shortly after the Company of the Immaculate to promote daily attendance at Communion, service to the altar and devotion to the Eucharist with repair intent. The text proposes the critical edition of the regulations, accompanied by that relating to the group of ministrants.

                                The issue is completed by the PROFILE of Andrzej Świda (1905-1995): salesiano con mente aperta e sguardo lungimirante, i.e., “Salesian with an open mind and forward-looking gaze”, presented by Fr Grzegorz Jaskot; also of note, two contributions in the NOTE sector, respectively on the Salesian contribution to technical and vocational training in India, and on anthropology and the missionaries in Panamazzonia; REWIEVS of publications on Salesian personalities and activities; and BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS.

                                • RMG CASA GENERALIZIA
                                • Libri e Pubblicazioni
                                • Storia
                                • ISS
                                • Ricerche Storiche Salesiane
                                  Gian Francesco Romano

                                  Puerto Rico – Fear and destruction from earthquake as aftershocks continue

                                  1 week 3 days ago
                                  Puerto Rico – Fear and destruction from earthquake as aftershocks continue

                                  (ANS - San Juan) - A 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck Puerto Rico on Monday, January 7, at 3:24 am (local time) near Guayanilla, on the island's southern coast. The earthquake has been the strongest recorded in Puerto Rico since 1918: according to a still provisional estimate, it has razed several buildings and caused at least one victim, leaving more than 300 people homeless. The shock of December 7 was the strongest of a seismic swarm that has been going on since the end of December, and which has registered almost a thousand earthquakes in the last week alone. The country remains in a state of emergency.

                                  The country's most affected area is the southern coast and the most severely damaged areas are those of Ponce, Peñuelas, Guayanilla, Yuaco, and Guánica.

                                  Currently, there is still no certain information on the conditions of the three Salesian houses present in Puerto Rico - Aibonito, Orocovis and Santurce - which, however, are located outside this area, in the island's central-eastern region.

                                  Yesterday over two-thirds of the population of Puerto Rico was without electricity, as the earthquake had caused serious damage to one of Puerto Rico's main power plants, the "Costa Sur", which produces around 40% of the electricity; at the moment, there is also no water in several cities.

                                  Just over 2 years have passed since the island was hit by Hurricane Maria, and the population had managed to restore many damaged structures, but the phenomenon of earthquakes is not part of the culture of local disasters and people are unprepared; for this reason, many people have been sleeping outside the house, in the car or on the street.

                                  The Puerto Rican Episcopal Conference, led by the bishop of Ponce, Msgr. Rubén Antonio González Medina, issued a statement yesterday in which, in addition to encouraging and inviting the local population to remain calm, urged the whole Catholic community to help each other and to reach out to the most vulnerable population: children, the elderly, the sick; they also invited all the religious to organize prayer vigils and celebrations.

                                  According to the testimony of the missionaries and religious reported by the Fides news agency, there is still a positive spirit and great faith in the population, although it is still not possible to identify the how and when end of this natural disaster. 

                                  • Porto Rico
                                  • ANT ANTILLE
                                  • Terremoto
                                  • Disastri e Calamità Naturali
                                    Gian Francesco Romano

                                    Spain – Vocations, a matter of deep roots

                                    1 week 3 days ago
                                    Spain – Vocations, a matter of deep roots

                                    (ANS - Madrid) - The new vocations campaign of the "Spain-St James Major" (SSM) Salesian Province, based in Madrid, invites young people to reflect on the need to take care of their roots in order to bear abundant fruit in their lives.

                                    "Do you know what you and a 100-meter-high sequoia have in common?" With this provocative question, the video of the new vocational campaign of the SSM Province begins. A campaign that takes as reference the sixth chapter of the Apostolic Exhortation Christus Vivit by Pope Francis entitled: 'Young people with roots'. "Roots are not anchors chaining us to past times and preventing us from facing the present and creating something new. Instead, they are a fixed point from which we can grow and meet new challenges," the Pope reminds us in the post-synodal document (par. 200).

                                    "The purpose of the campaign is to help each young person understand the need to have deep roots. When it is well cared for and accompanied, our life is ready to bear abundant fruit, becoming what we are called to be, because we are sure that this means making our own the vocational project of life that God has dreamed for each of us," explains Fr Xabier Camino, Coordinator of Vocation Animation for the Salesians of the SSM Province. This initiative, proposed annually in the month of Don Bosco, motivates reflection on the meaning of life and on the answer to the call of God.

                                    The campaign underlines how "strong and deep" roots help to discover one's "vocation". In the video, several young people, educators and Salesians advise to water these roots "with the love that comes from learning from older people, from listening to those who take care of you, from the development of your talents, from the cultivation of your faith, from the struggle to change the world, from the pursuit of happiness by making others happy." But, above all, they encourage you to water your roots with "the love that comes from lighting your heart and inspiring your mind with the light of the Gospel."

                                    The video ends with an appeal to take care of one's roots.

                                    The project managers also prepared various materials to deepen the proposals of the vocation campaign: prayers and input for the Salesian "Good morning", celebrations, testimonies, activities, and the like. Available on the website www.sersalesiano.com, these resources shall contribute to the promotion of a vocational culture among people linked to the Salesian world: children, adolescents and young people, the Salesian Family, the educative-pastoral community and the Salesian community. This is an all-round comprehensive initiative that will also echo and have repercussions on and across social networks.

                                    • Spagna
                                    • SSM SPAGNA SAN GIACOMO MAGGIORE
                                    • Vocazioni
                                    • Comunicazione Sociale
                                      Gian Francesco Romano

                                      RMG – The 10 events, trends and hashtags to be made "trending topics" for 2020

                                      1 week 4 days ago

                                      (ANS - Rome) - 2020 presents itself as a year of major projects and expectations. FAO has declared 2020 as the "International Year of Plant Health", a unique opportunity to raise awareness across the globe of how the protection of vegetation can help end hunger, reduce poverty, protect the environment and stimulate economic development. The Pope launched a global event for this year: "Global Compact on Education." And in this context the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, offered the Salesian Family a very topical reflection through his Strenna on the theme: "Good Christians and Upright Citizens."

                                      "For our young people today, accustomed to immediate results ... educating to social commitment is essential," writes the Rector Major in the 2020 Strenna. And in full harmony with this line, the Pope has announced a worldwide event for May 14, 2020: "Rebuilding the global educational compact" in order to "revive the commitment for and with the younger generations, renewing the passion for a more open and inclusive education, capable of patient listening, constructive dialogue and of mutual understanding."


                                      2020 thus opens with great prospects, dreams and hopes for the whole Salesian Family. But, to unify criteria, commitments and - above all - to send the same message on a global level, we propose the 10 events of 2020, the 10 trends to develop into "trending topics" in our actions on social networks and the 10 hashtags that must flood the digital courtyards:

                                      JANUARY
                                      16-19
                                      Spirituality Days of the Salesian Family
                                      Location: Turin - Italy
                                      Hashtag: #SDSF

                                      JANUARY
                                      31
                                      132 years from Don Bosco's Birth to Heaven
                                      Location: Turin - Italy
                                      Hashtag: #DonBosco

                                      FEBRUARY
                                      6-11
                                      Rector Major's Visit to Venezuela
                                      Location: Caracas - Venezuela
                                      Hashtag: #VenezuelaSalesiana

                                      FEBRUARY
                                      Visit of the Rector Major and blessing of a new school
                                      Place: Spain
                                      Hashtag: #DonBoscoEducator

                                      FEBRUARY - APRIL
                                      From February 16th to April 4th
                                      General Chapter 28th (GC28)
                                      Location: Turin, Italy
                                      Hashtag: #GC28

                                      MAY
                                      23
                                      World Council of the Salesian Family
                                      Location: Turin, Italy
                                      Hashtag: #ConsultaSF

                                      MAY
                                      24
                                      Feast of Mary Help of Christians
                                      Location: Turin, Italy
                                      Hashtag: #MaryHelpofChristians

                                      JUNE
                                      24
                                      150 years of the foundation of the Past Pupils of Don Bosco
                                      Location: Turin, Italy
                                      Hashtag: #SDBPastPupils

                                      SEPTEMBER
                                      18
                                      XXIV General Chapter of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians
                                      Location: Rome, Italy
                                      Hashtag: #GC24

                                      SEPTEMBER
                                      27
                                      151st Salesian Missionary Expedition
                                      Location: Turin, Italy
                                      Hashtag: #MalesariSalesiani

                                      • RMG CASA GENERALIZIA
                                      • Comunicazione Sociale
                                      • Social
                                        Gian Francesco Romano

                                        Peru – "Diary 80": the lost last diary of Fr Bolla

                                        1 week 4 days ago

                                        (ANS - Kuyuntsa) – "Father Luis Bolla was one of the great missionaries of recent times," said Fr Giovanni Bottasso, who recently passed away. On 22 October 2018, the Ecuadorian publishing house "Abya Yala/UPS" presented the 14 volumes that contain the testimony of 50 years of Father Bolla's missionary life. But those writings only go to 2012. Missing was a notebook to conclude the life of this missionary, who died on February 6, 2013. A few months ago, Fr Diego Clavijo, a Salesian missionary in Kuyuntsa, managed to locate Diary 80. "It's a wonderful story of the people he loved and gave his whole life to."

                                        After six years, the last diary of Fr Luis (Luigi) Bolla was found. Fr Vicente Santilli, SDB, has in his possession the original notebook, preserved in the "Santa Rosa" Province of Peru. Fr Clavijo, who worked with Fr Bolla for several years, found the diary with the simple title "80 Kuyuntsa": after 79 handwritten diaries by Yankuam (Twilight, what the indigenous Achuar called Fr Bolla), today it is possible to also read the last one, which allows readers to participate in his profound reflections of faith and on the work of the Achuar people.

                                        “At this moment the indigenous peoples of the jungle have organized themselves,” Fr Bolla begins in the diary. “The truly bilingual and bicultural school is fundamental for Aboriginal peoples to enter history and be respected.”

                                        Every evening, by the light of a candle, Fr Yankuam wrote in his notebook of his life with the Achuar, on his pastoral work and in the field, on his travels, describing anecdotes of every day's new adventures; but above all, he internalized his faith and his way of perceiving a complex reality in which he naturally inserted himself increasingly more.

                                        Fr Bolla wrote until the last day he was conscious. His latest texts, in his own handwriting, were written during the Spiritual Exercises of 2013 in the retreat house in Chosica (Peru), when a sudden cerebral ischemia surprised him in his room on January 6. He never recovered and died on February 6, 2013.

                                        The handwritten "Diary 80" gives us his last thoughts on that year's retreat, which seems to be his preparation for eternal life. He takes notes from the interventions and, as if he knew that he would have left for the clinic that day, he writes: "Jesus, stay with me and with all of us, as the evening is falling."

                                        This last diary was transcribed by the team of the Historical Archives of Quito under the direction of Fr Juan (Giovanni) Bottasso who, before dying and reaching his friend Fr Bolla in Heaven, managed to leave behind this precious work.

                                        Angélica Almeida, Ecuador 

                                        {gallery}PER - Diario 80 - 2020{/gallery}

                                        • Perù
                                        • PER PERÙ
                                        • Luis Bolla
                                        • Missioni
                                        • Storia
                                          Gian Francesco Romano
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