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News - Salesians of Don Bosco

Panama - Inauguration of pilgrimage center of Blessed Sr. Maria Romero, FMA, in Panama2019

3 weeks 3 days ago
Panama - Inauguration of pilgrimage center of Blessed Sr. Maria Romero, FMA, in Panama2019

(ANS - Panama City) - In the temple of Mary Help of Christians of the "Don Bosco Technical Institute" of Panama City, the pilgrimage center of the Blessed Sister Maria Romero Meneses (1902-1977), Daughter of Mary Help of Christians, was inaugurated. She is one of the patrons of the World Youth Day (WYD) 2019. Mother Yvonne Reungoat, Mother General of the FMA, cut the ribbon to open the doors of the church to the pilgrims of WYD.

One year ago, a group of religious sisters was founded - Sister Inés Berríos, Sr. Marcela Ortiz, Sr. Celia López, Sr. Carolina Cruz, Sr. Araceli Pereira, Sr. Marianela Solís and Sr. Mayra Biches, as responsible - for the creation of the pilgrimage center. "We want this to be a pilgrimage through the life of the Blessed, so that after leaving the temple the pilgrims can see with the glasses and walk with the shoes of Sister Maria Romero," they said.

Pilgrims enter through the main door and begin a journey of encounter with the blessed Romero, a woman in love with God: her two loves - Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and Mary Help of Christians – she called her "King" and her "Queen".

Prilgrims will live the first moment in the Marian shrine through a reflection under the sign of water. The Blessed FMA asked the Virgin for water that healed and it was granted her in the foundation of the "House of the Virgin" in Costa Rica. There are testimonies of people who drank this water with great faith and received physical and spiritual healing. For the pilgrimage center, water was taken from the same source in Costa Rica.

Continuing the journey, pilgrims reach the central nave of the temple, where there is the dream of the two columns of Don Bosco represented, and where one can reflect on the Salesian dimension. After a meeting with the Blessed Sacrament, the historical route, one arrives at the altar of the relic of the Blessed Sister Romero.

The center is already open and being visited by pilgrims since, in these days of the WYD, it hosts many young people from the Salesian world.

The exposed relic was donated by the Archbishop of Panama City, Msgr. José Domingo Ulloa, at the Technical Institute of Don Bosco, and it will remain there for public veneration.

{gallery}Panama - Centro sr Panama{/gallery}

  • Panama
  • Panama2019
  • GMG2019
  • Maria Romero Meneses
  • FMA Figlie di Maria Ausiliatrice
  • Santità Salesiana
    Gian Francesco Romano

    Panama - The WYD of young indigenous people, before Panama2019

    3 weeks 3 days ago
    Panama - The WYD of young indigenous people, before Panama2019

    (ANS - Soloy) - An authentic novelty, as part of the World Youth Day: the one represented by the World Meeting of Indigenous Youth, which was also held in Panama, in the village of Soloy, just before the start of the WYD, on January 17-21. "Go back to the culture of the origins. Take charge of your roots, because from the roots comes the strength that makes you grow," said a video message by Pope Francis to the young indigenous participants.

    The World Meeting of Indigenous Youth, also called "the WYD of young indigenous people", answers to a special sensitivity of Pope Francis, who has dedicated several talks to the indigenous peoples, and has often in his apostolic journeys wanted to meet delegations of the native peoples, and who included the theme of the indigenous peoples among the fundamentals of the Special Synod for the Panamazonic Region to be held in October 2019.

    Approximately 350 young people from 13 different Latin American countries took part in the event.

    On the first day, the program of activities provided a focus on the living memory of the indigent peoples, while the second, on the struggle to maintain harmony with the earth, starting from the richness of cultures and in the light of Pope Francis' encyclical "Laudato Sì". The last day included a reflection on the importance of the active participation of young indigenous peoples in the construction of another possible world and the concluding Eucharist, presided over by Cardinal José Luis Lacunza, bishop of David, Panama.

    Each day began with a moment of joy through animation, singing, music and dancing and always closed with cultural events prepared by local groups. In the middle, in addition to reflections and discussions, there was always space for prayer expressed in the different cultural identities, pilgrimages, dynamics, concerts and ecological activities.

    "We thought of a pre-Day experience as a 'bridge experience', where young indigenous people could come from their towns and share the good and bad of the societies in which they live," explained one of the organizers.

    "Many see us as crazy, for how we dress, for how we talk ... It's not like that. We simply do not have the same opportunities as people in cities," complains an indigenous young woman.

    In his video message, Pope Francis showed appreciation for the initiative, which shows "the indigenous face of our Church in the WYD environment" and recalls "our commitment to protect our common home and to collaborate in the construction of another possible world, more egalitarian and more humane."

    • Panama
    • Panama2019
    • GMG2019
    • Indigeni
    • Papa Francesco
      Gian Francesco Romano

      Panama - #WeAreDonBosco: Salesian Missionary Offices' proposal to young people of Panama2019

      3 weeks 3 days ago
      Panama - #WeAreDonBosco: Salesian Missionary Offices' proposal to young people of Panama2019

      (ANS - Panama City) - "We Are Don Bosco": this is the motto, translated into various languages, that the Salesian Missionary Offices of the whole world launch on the occasion of the WYD of Panama2019 and in view of the Feast of the Saint of Youth scheduled for January 31st. The thousands of pilgrims from the Salesian areas who have gathered these days in Panama are therefore invited to bear witness to their Salesianity by spreading the message: #WeAreDonBosco.

      There are several reasons that led to this initiative. First of all, the peculiarity of this January, already in itself the "Salesian month", but this year there is also the WYD, which takes place in a country that loves Don Bosco viscerally.

      Then there is the desire for collaboration and unity among the various Salesian Missionary Offices, which is also expressed through messages and common communication projects.

      And then there is the reality of the young people of the Salesian Youth Movement (SYM) at the WYD. Every WYD, in fact, sees the SYM at the forefront, and when it comes to youth spirituality, joy, solidarity and sharing, always stands at center stage and is, moreover, a model of the worldwide network among the young faithful.

      At WYD it is easy to note the Salesian specificity: the welcome that precedes and accompanies the pilgrims, the formative and spiritual journey that accompanies the official appointments of the "Day", the joy of those who live similar experiences that take place at a distance of a continent away, the hymns to Don Bosco in the different languages and in the different musical styles, the conspicuous numbers of groups, and more.

      The proposal to young people is now simple: to those in Panama, do share your photos and posts using the hashtags#WeAreDonBosco and #IAmSalesian, in addition to the others suggested by the WYD. Thus, the ideal link will be made to all those who belong to the Salesian world. Indeed, this will also allow those who could not go to Panama to feel part of the celebrations.

      With "We Are Don Bosco" we want to spread the message that Don Bosco is still alive today: in the 30,000 religious men and women serving the most needy young people, following his model and his style; in the 3 million people who have gone through Salesian training programs; in the 5,500 Salesian schools in the world, in the 330 shelters for young people in difficulty, in the 1,100 vocational training centers …

      Further information is available at www.missionidonbosco.org and at http://salesianmissions.org/wyd. From the latter, it is possible to download, in English and Spanish, a specific prayer for the young people of WYD to request the intercession of Don Bosco.

      • Panama2019
      • Panama
      • GMG2019
      • Procure Missionarie
      • Comunicazione Sociale
        Gian Francesco Romano

        Panama - Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, arrives in Panama2019

        3 weeks 4 days ago
        Panama - Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, arrives in Panama2019

        (ANS - Panama City) - Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major of the Salesians, arrived yesterday, Monday, January 21st, at the Basilica of Don Bosco in Panama to accompany the youth who will participate in the World Youth Day (WYD) and the world festival of the Salesian Youth Movement (SYM).

        As early as two o'clock in the afternoon the Salesian delegations were present in the courtyard of the Basilica of Don Bosco to receive the Rector Major. During the wait there reigned an oratorian party atmosphere, with the young people busy singing, dancing, joking, telling each other their  experiences, spontaneously making new friends.

        Then, at 6:15 pm, amid applauses, ovations and songs, Fr Á.F. Artime made his way through the young people crowded together to take a selfie with him or to give a welcome hug to the Successor of Don Bosco. In a natural and spontaneous fashion, some space gave way, bounded by the flags of different countries, for the encounter. At the end of the route one could glimpse the exact replica of the "Becchi" house - Don Bosco's birthplace - built at the Salesian center, the "Valdocco of America".

        Fr Rómulo Gallegos, SDB, Director of the House, welcomed the Rector Major and thanked him for his visit. The Superior of the Salesian Congregation greeted all those present, spoke of his long journey and expressed his joy and happiness in finding himself among the young.

        "We want to make a journey of fidelity to the Lord. I am the first who wants to continue to learn to be truly faithful to Jesus, and to do it with you, my dear young people, is a wonderful gift. We shall have time to share and to greet each other before meeting the Pope and the young people of the world," said Fr Á.F. Artime before an audience of boys and girls from all over the world who listened to him with attention and admiration.

        Tomorrow, January 23rd, the Rector Major, together with the Mother General of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Mother Yvonne Reungoat, will give a message to all the young people of the Salesian community present at WYD, as part of the worldwide celebration of the SYM.

        After the WYD, the Rector Major will remain in Panama to celebrate Don Bosco's triduum and the great feast of 31 January together with the Panamanian community, which in Don Bosco celebrates its patron saint.

        • Panama2019
        • Panama
        • Rettor Maggiore
        • Ángel Fernández Artime
        • GMG2019
        • MGS Movimento Giovanile Salesiano
          Gian Francesco Romano

          Palestine - One million rosaries from the Holy Land to WYD of Panama2019

          3 weeks 4 days ago
          Palestine - One million rosaries from the Holy Land to WYD of Panama2019

          (ANS - Bethlehem) - Panama2019's World Youth Day (WYD) has already begun. In the Latin American country, one million rosaries have arrived from Bethlehem, which the Holy Father will give to the young people who have gathered for this great event, scheduled from today, 22 January, to Sunday 27. "This initiative is essential because, on the one hand, it stimulates prayer and, on the other, it helps support our brothers and sisters in the Holy Land," said the archbishop of Panama, mgr. José Domingo Ulloa Mendieta, underlining the importance of this project.

          The rosaries were made of olive wood in the city of birth of Jesus, and they traveled 12,000 kilometers to reach Panama. They are part of the "AVE GMG" project, inspired by the appeal of Pope Francis to pray for peace in the world. The initiative was born from the Swiss association "Saint Jean-Marie Vianney" of Lausanne and "Caritas Jerusalem", led by the bishop emeritus of Reykjavik, Iceland, Msgr. Pierre Bürcher.

          The Pontifical Foundation "Aid to the Church in Need" (ACS) contributed to the project with a donation of 100 thousand euros for the creation of the small wreaths. "A gift already in itself precious," comments the director of ACS Italia, Alessandro Monteduro, "which is made even more special by the fact that the rosaries were made by the Christian craftsmen of Bethlehem."

          There are over 350,000 Christians who have abandoned Bethlehem since the creation of the State of Israel in 1948. A hemorrhage that is closely linked to economic difficulties and the high rate of unemployment among Christians.

          The approximately 200 families of Bethlehem who have worked for months to make one million rosaries for WYD will be supported for a whole year. "They are grateful for the support received, but above all they are happy to know that hundreds of thousands of young people in Panama will pray for peace, reciting the Rosary with the wreaths they have made," continues Monteduro.

          "Here I am, I am the servant of the Lord, let it be done to me what you have said" (Lk 1:38) is the motto of Panama2019, and represents the first Marian theme motto of a WYD.

          "The Virgin Mary is the mother of all: this is why the young are called to trust Her, because She is the queen of peace and if we do the will of the Lord all men, women and young people of good will, we can gradually create peace, starting from our hearts, starting from Jerusalem," said Msgr. Bürcher.

          WYD has involved many people in the devotion to the Holy Rosary. This is the case of female inmates of the "Cecilia Orillac de Chiari" Women's Rehabilitation Center in Panama, 60 of whom made ring rosaries and other religious objects to be offered to young people during the WYD.

          • Palestina
          • Preghiera
          • GMG2019
          • Panama
            Gian Francesco Romano

            Brazil - "Missionary Action" brings Salesian youth to meet one's neighbour

            3 weeks 4 days ago

            (ANS - São Paulo- From 6 to 13 January, as was tradition among the young people in Salesian circles, another edition of "Missionary Action" took place, a project carried out by the Youth Ministry of the "Mary Help of Christians" Province of Brazil - São Paulo  (BSP) through the Missionary Animation Service.

            by Anderson Bueno

            This year, 2019, the parishes that welcomed the young missionaries were those of "Santa Teresinha", in Araraquaraquara, the parish of "Nossa Senhora da Conceição", in Cunha; the parish of "São Francisco", in Monte Verde-MG; the parish of "Nossa Senhora Aparecida", in Santa Izabel; the parish "Sagrada Família" and the Pastoral Area of "São Sebastião", in Itaim Paulista, São Paulo.

            Missionary Action always takes place in January, because it is a month of holidays for young people, and is led by young people of the "Missionary Action Groups" (GAM) of Salesian houses scattered throughout the State of São Paulo. During the week, young people interact with the community by reciting the luminous rosary, participating in the celebrations, making visits and blessings to the houses and also organizing workshops for children, young people and adults.

            The fulfillment of a missionary project like this also affects the life of the parishes that welcome it. It gives courage to the pastoral workers, brings people close together, brings the parish into contact with people and families who until then had not attended the parish community, and offers strong moments of fraternity and spirituality.

            "It is foolish for strangers to see you leave the comfort of your home to go to an unknown place to speak of Jesus. But, as St. Paul says in the First Letter to the Corinthians: The word of the Cross is in fact folly for those who go into perdition, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God," says the missionary Mariana Borges Rezende, 22, of the GAM of Sorocaba.

            Because of the similarity, Missionary Action is sometimes confused with the Mission Week, which is held in July. The proposals are similar, but the young people taking part in the January event are already more mature in their faith by participating in the GAM and their local communities. In July, the Missionary Week allows, in many cases, young people in social works and schools to have their first contact with a missionary project that leads them to go to others.

            In both cases, these are worthy projects that do good for both those who work as missionaries, and for the communities that receive them.

            {gallery}BSP - Azione missionaria{/gallery}

            • Brasile
            • BSP
            • Missioni
              Gian Francesco Romano

              Italy - Feast of Salesian Family of Lazio, amidst holiness and extraordinary generosity

              3 weeks 5 days ago
              Italy - Feast of Salesian Family of Lazio, amidst holiness and extraordinary generosity

              (ANS - Rome) - The Feast of the Salesian Family of Lazio, celebrated yesterday, Sunday, January 20, at the "Don Bosco Theater" of Cinecittà in Rome, saw a large number of participants rediscover, thanks to the theater, the figure of the Saint of Youth. The Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, also intervened, calling attention to the possibility of holiness for all and a gesture of extraordinary generosity.

              by Aurelio Marinelli, SDB

              The nuclei of the festive afternoon was the show that Laura Curino and Simone Derai presented, a tale narrating the intelligence and the spirit able to transform extraordinary men into "social saints", in the Piedmont of the 19th century.

              Also present at the feast was Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major of the Salesians, who thanked the theatrical company for having shown the reality of the Salesian charism born at the Pinardi home.

              "The trail of Piedmontese holiness," said Fr Á.F. Artime, "found in Valdocco a fertile soil, which made great figures of holiness directly or indirectly linked to our Family flourish."

              The Rector Major then said that a few days after Christmas, greetings from Uganda arrived from a Salesian of the Salesian headquarters who'd visited two presences of the Congregation among the poorest youth, one in Palabek, which hosts about 42 thousand refugees.

              "A year ago, on the feast day of Don Bosco," the Rector Major continued, "we opened a presence with a small community. Without houses, without church, in the middle of the refugee camp, with the people of the camp. I received from this confrere two envelopes with offers for me, with the commitment to donate them to the needy young people. I felt a great emotion: they, the poorest of the poor, who put aside a small amount of money for people in need like them. I wanted to tell you this because it is precisely the story that today, through this representation, you have told all of us. This is a sign of Don Bosco who wants to remind us that the human heart is the most precious and generous reality that exists in the world."

              Fr Artime greeted those present, saying that the next morning he would be leaving for Panama to participate in the WYD and the great events planned for the feast of Don Bosco.

              {gallery}ICC - Santa Impresa ex post{/gallery}

              • Italia
              • ICC
              • Rettor Maggiore
              • Ángel Fernández Artime
              • Uganda
              • Palabek
              • Famiglia Salesiana
                Gian Francesco Romano

                Panama - World youth festival begins with volunteers with a Salesian heart: Panama 2019

                3 weeks 5 days ago
                Panama - World youth festival begins with volunteers with a Salesian heart: Panama 2019

                (ANS - Panama City) - Just a few hours to go before the World Youth Day (WYD) of Panama 2019 begins, an event prepared with a highly precise organization. The Salesians were the first to take up this challenge. And in the spirit of service, driven by the love of God, thousands of people, from the youngest to the oldest, have decided to be part of the organization of the greatest event of the Catholic Church, to be witnesses of God's love.

                Ever since Pope Francis announced the WYD of Panama 2019, Panamanians and foreigners have not hesitated to give their support in its preparation, with the objective that young people all over the world live an experience of a true encounter with Jesus.

                At the Basilica of Don Bosco in Panama there are 234 people who have accepted the call to service, dividing themselves into commissions: accommodation, transport, ecology, administration, logistics, catechesis, health, technical support and communication. Volunteers prepare themselves on an organizational and spiritual level, receiving formation and training, subdivided into four modules: general information of the WYD, history of the Panamanian Church, service and civilization.

                Fpr its part, the Don Bosco Technical Institute in Panama (ITDB) hosts 1,100 pilgrims from Salesian circles. The first of these pilgrims began to arrive as early as last Friday, January 18, all greeted with a warm welcome, ovations, songs and applause. "Having the house full of these young people is a dream come true. We have been preparing for your arrival for a long time, with joy and enthusiasm. We want you to feel at home!," said Fr Alex Figueroa, Director of ITDB, during Sunday Mass celebrated specifically for the young.

                "Being here is beautiful. It does not matter if we come from different countries. We are all 'Salesians' and this is enough to be friends, to be a family. Panama welcomed us with great affection and joy," said Marco Andino, Coordinator of the Honduran delegation.

                The Salesian News Agency (ANS) has sent a team to Panama to follow the event. Timely information on WYD, the meetings of the Holy Father, the appointments of the Rector Major with the SYM and Salesian activities will be published on the news website, on the agency's Facebook page (which will host live broadcasts) and on other social networks. Photos will be uploaded to ANSFlickr.

                For general information on WYD: https://panama2019.pa/en/home/ 

                To see what has been achieved since Pope Francis announced the Panama WYD 2019: https://www.flickr.com/photos/panama2019/page1 

                "To place oneself at the service of others," said the Holy Father in his message to the young people participating in WYD 2019, "does not just mean being ready for action; we must also engage in dialogue with God, in an attitude of listening, as Mary did."

                {gallery}Panama - Volontari e arrivi{/gallery}

                • Panama
                • CAM
                • GMG2019
                • Pastorale Giovanile
                • Volontariato
                  Gian Francesco Romano

                  RMG – 2019: a missionary year!

                  3 weeks 5 days ago
                  RMG – 2019: a missionary year!

                  (ANS - Rome) - 2019 marks the centenary of the promulgation of the Apostolic Letter "Maximum illud", with which Pope Benedict XV sought to give new impetus to the missionary task of proclaiming the Gospel. This is why Pope Francis has called the "Extraordinary Missionary Month" this coming October. In this perspective, the traditional Salesian Mission Day (SMD) 2019 takes on a particular meaning.

                  The Apostolic Letter Maximum Illud called for transcending national boundaries and bearing witness, with prophetic spirit and evangelical boldness, to God’s saving will through the Church’s universal mission. May the approaching centenary of that Letter serve as an incentive to combat the recurring temptation lurking beneath every form of ecclesial introversion, self-referential retreat into comfort zones, pastoral pessimism and sterile nostalgia for the past. Instead, may we be open to the joyful newness of the Gospel," Pope Francis wrote in announcing the proclamation of the extraordinary missionary month.

                  The official website of the Extraordinary Missionary Month is available on the web: http://www.october2019.va/it.html.

                  Meanwhile, the Sector for Salesian Missions has already broadcast the motto of the Salesian Missionary Day 2019, officially launched on the day of the Epiphany: "Without knowing it, they have welcomed angels" (Hebrews 13: 2).

                  Like every year, the SMD explores a specific theme, in a given continental reality. This year the choice fell on the "First Announcement among refugees and displaced persons in Africa".

                  Along with the motto, the first resources for the animation of the SMD are already being shared. The poster and the card with the prayer are on their way to the provinces around he globe and in February more material for animation and videos will be available in the six most spoken languages in the Congregation.

                  The poster presents two girls, where one welcomes the other. It is a symbol of the value of African hospitality, Africa that welcomes Africa. "The greatest migration of our time is the intra-African one, where millions of people are forced to travel," the Missions Sector explains.

                  In the background one can see the realities of refugee camps and settlements; pastoral and educational activities, especially in vocational training; and the Salesians who are present with refugees and displaced persons, sharing their lives.

                  "The theme focuses our attention on the challenge of this frontier full of young people, who await the friendship of Salesians, their oratories, schools, vocational training ... and the Good News of Jesus. But the theme," says the Sector for Salesian Missions, "is also an opportunity to live and promote the evangelical virtue of hospitality, that capacity to welcome, to open our homes, our hands, our hearts to others, especially those who find themselves most in need. In doing so, we welcome angels, the same Lord."

                  • RMG
                  • Missioni
                  • Giornata Missionaria Salesiana
                  • Giornata Missionaria Mondiale
                    Gian Francesco Romano

                    RMG – The Rector Major’s “goodnight”: “We are convinced that our mission is to be with the most needy young people”

                    4 weeks 1 day ago
                    RMG – The Rector Major’s “goodnight”: “We are convinced that our mission is to be with the most needy young people”

                    (ANS – Rome) – “As is customary, I have the opportunity to give you a ‘good night’, for two reasons: to tell you about the work of the Winter Plenary Session of the General Council, and to thank you for the work that you do for the good of the Salesian Congregation around the world.” These were Fr Ángel Fernández Artime’s words as Rector Major on the evening of 17 January at the conclusion of the General Council’s work.

                    Four Provincials were appointed during this session: Fr Choi Wonchol, South Korea (KOR), Fr Tadeusz Jarecki for Warsaw, Poland (PLE), Fr Ignacio Ocampo Uribe for Guadalajara, Mexico (MEM),and Fr Daniel Federspiel, reconfirmed as Provincial of France-Belgium South.

                    Five Vice-provincials were also appointed, one Provincial Economer, 20 Provincial Councillors, 45 Rectors and three Novice Masters. At the same time 9 extraordinary Visitations carried out by General Council members on behalf of the Rector Major in the preceding months were studied: Thailand (THA), Slovenia (SLO), India-Hyderabad (INH), Bolivia (BOL), Argentina South (ARS), Mexico-Guadalajara (MEG), Chile (CIL), English-speaking West Africa (AFW) and Slovakia (SLK).

                    The Rector Major also said that “at the moment we do not know exactly how many we are in the Salesian Congregation because many young people are making their religious profession in the coming months, but we can say that we are a Congregation increasing in numbers. At the moment there are 14,489 SDBs, and I can state” the Rector Major continued  “that ours is the Congregation with the largest number of novices.”

                    “One of the topics that gives us great hope is the numbers” the Rector Major concluded. On 31 December 2018 there were 2,060 newly professed, and this is reason for hope. We need to thank God for this gift. We are convinced that our mission is to be with the most needy young people, and we need to be very attentive to houses of formation and formators. This can make the difference in the coming six years in order to continue growth in vocations, while still guaranteeing the ongoing formation of every Salesian.”

                    • RMG
                    • Consiglio Generale
                    • Rettor Maggiore
                    • Vocazioni
                    • Ángel Fernández Artime
                      Gian Francesco Romano

                      Dominican Republic – Youth Going Forth, a missionary Church

                      4 weeks 1 day ago
                      Dominican Republic – Youth Going Forth, a missionary Church

                      (ANS – Santo Domingo) – “Jóvenes en Salida” (Youth Going Forth) is a program thought up to remind young people of their commitment as baptised lay people and to sensitise them to being missionaries and disciples of the Lord and to live out this responsibility in community, and indeed in Salesian Missionary Communities.

                      Through learning projects carried out over two years, those taking part in the ‘Youth Going Forth’ program will gain the ability to carry out effective community tasks aimed at solidarity and holistic promotion of the community in which they are working; at the same time they will be accompanied in their activities of evangelisation and promotion in their communities of origin.

                      Those taking part in the project are young adults who are or have been involved in community leadership tasks in Salesian works; once formed through the “Young Peopl going Forth” program they will be ready to become members of Salesian Missionary Communities – communities of young people intending to respond to God’s call to a missionary vocation ad gentes: “go out to all the world and proclaim the Good News to all of creation.”

                      One of the addresses given at the Youth Going Forth program is “Epiphany Going Forth”, an initiative meant to develop supportive commitment among the youth, allowing them to mature in their choice of community life and lay involvement.

                      This initiative, after due preparation, will be put into action at the Feast of the Epiphany in January next, and is meant to be a real “epiphany” (a “manifestation”, “revelation”) of God’s love for our neighbour.

                      “We would like to be the manifestation of the love that was revealed, became flesh, took on our human history with all its consequences”, say those responsible for the initiative, also quoting John’s Letter (1 Jn 4:8) which reminds us that “God is love” and that love is God’s characteristic attribute, as well as being his most attractive one.

                      The formation process of Youth Going Forth sees that the experience of the learning project in service to others is framed within the notion of “Supportive Commitment” and involves awareness of the place for mission (communities on the periphery) and approach to people and existing social structures. This way the young people have a practical experience of being sensitive to the needs of their neighbour, to responsibility, solidarity, commitment and proclamation of the Gospel.

                      {gallery}ANT - Giovani in uscita 2019{/gallery}

                      • ANT
                      • Repubblica Dominicana
                      • Missioni
                      • Volontariato
                      • Laici
                        Gian Francesco Romano

                        India – Tragic accident involves a Salesian school community

                        4 weeks 1 day ago
                        India – Tragic accident involves a Salesian school community

                        (ANS – Ahmednagar) – Yesterday, Thursday, 17 January 2019, Fr James Tuscano, four staff and 44 students of DB Savedi, Ahmednagar, were returning from Vasai by bus. Around 7 pm, the bus met with an accident and rammed into a pick-up vehicle. Mr Arun Jadhav, a senior teacher of the School, the driver of the pick-up and the cleaner of the bus have died.

                        Last night, one staff and 32 students returned to Ahmednagar. Fr Tuscano, two staff members, and 12 students had some injuries; they were taken to close-by hospitals for treatment and observation. This morning, they, too, are returning to Ahmednagar.

                        “We pray for the repose of the deceased, and for the complete recovery of the injured” has said Fr Vinod Mascarenhas, SDB, Provincial Secretary on India-Mumbai province (INB).

                        • India
                        • INB
                        • Disastri
                          Gian Francesco Romano

                          RMG – “Ricerche Storiche Salesiane” no. 71

                          4 weeks 1 day ago
                          RMG – “Ricerche Storiche Salesiane” no. 71

                          (ANS – Roma) – Number 71 of “Ricerche Storiche Salesiane” (RSS), the July-December 2018 edition, has just been published. This is the Journal of religious and civil history published by the Salesian Historical Institute (ISS).

                          The STUDIES (Studi) section has the following contributions:

                          Understanding the mission of the Church in the letters of Bishop Giuseppe Fagnano”, by Antonio Scudero. This essay analyses Fr Fagnano’s correspondence with Don Bosco, Fr Rua, Bishop Cagliero and other Salesians. The letters show the development and crises in Fr Fagnano’s missionary activity, as well as the maturing of pastoral awareness that lay behind an extraordinary activity due to his dedication, spirit of sacrifice and understanding of the circumstances of the indigenous peoples.

                          “Salesians in Italy during the First World War” is a study by Francesco Motto. This conflict, which disrupted the daily lives of millions of European families, had a very strong impact also on the 2,000 or more Salesians in Italy, who at a time of serious emergency remained faithful to their charism as educators and at the same time did not fail to show that they were religious, citizens, Christians and patriots.

                          The third contribution is by Thomas Anchunkandam on the subject of “Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore: history and significance of the opening of the first Salesian Institute in the Archdiocese of Bangalore.” This number of the RSS offers the first of three parts to this study and examines both the reason for the enthusiasm of the Salesians in having a presence in Bangalore,  and the reasons for the failure of earlier attempts.

                          The SOURCES (Fonti) section presents the text:

                          “Regulations for the Immaculate Conception Sodality approved by Don Bosco on 9 June 1856”, a critical edition of one of the most important sources, edited by Rodolfo Bogotto. The Immaculate Conception Sodality came into being on 8 June 1856 at Valdocco, due to the initiative of a number of boys, including Dominic Savio, who came together and placed themselves under the protection of Mary Immaculate. They drew up some regulations offering indications for a simple path to formation, but at a high level. They committed themselves to accompanying new members, the “more unruly ones” and the “more ignorant”. A good number of these members later formed the original core group of the Salesian Congregation.

                          The edition is completed by items offered in the “Notes” (Note) section – “Filling the space: Don Bosco’s letters to missionaries” by Nicola Bottiglieri; and “Cardinal August Hlond: the weight of responsibility and courage in decision-making” by Zygmunt Zieliński – the  Reviews (Recensioni) of a number of publications on Salesian activities and personalities, and one contribution in the Notifications (Segnalazioni) section.

                          • RMG
                          • Ricerche Storiche Salesiane
                          • Giuseppe Fagnano
                          • Guerra
                            Gian Francesco Romano

                            India – Father Joseph Thekadathu SDB, pre-eminent Church historian in the country, has passed away

                            4 weeks 1 day ago
                            India – Father Joseph Thekadathu SDB, pre-eminent Church historian in the country, has passed away

                            (ANS – Bangalore) – Eminent Salesian historian, Fr Joseph Thekkedath SDB, passed away on Tuesday, 15 January 2019 at the age of 91. Following a fall he had sustained a few days earlier, he was confined to his room in Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore, and the end came quite unexpectedly yet serenely at 9.15 p.m.

                            By Fr Thomas Anchukandam, SDB

                            Direttore – ISS

                            The funeral services were conducted at Kristu Jyoti College, the Salesian studentate of theology, Bangalore, at 2.00 p.m. on Thursday, 17 January and his mortal remains laid to rest in the cemetery adjacent to the College Chapel.

                            Fr Joseph Thekkedath, a former President of the Church History Association of India (CHAI) and indisputably the pre-eminent Church historian in the country, was also a member of the Associazione Cultori Storia Salesiana (ACSSA). His contribution to the history of the Church in India is his History of Christianity in India, Vol. II – From the Middle of the Sixteenth Century to the End of the Seventeenth Century (Theological Publications of India, Bangalore 1982). His monumental two-volume work, A History of the Salesians of Don Bosco in India from the Beginning up to 1951-52 (Kristu Jyoti Publications, Bangalore 2005) is arguably the only scientifically pursued historical writing of any region/country in the entire Congregation.

                            Besides being a scholar of great merit, Fr Thekkedath also served as the Rector of Sacred Heart Seminary, Poonamallee, Chennai (1970-’74) founded in 1936 by Archbishop Louis Mathias sdb; Rector of Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore (1981-’85) and Provincial of the Sacred Heart Province of Bangalore (1985-1991). After his term as Provincial, Fr Thekkedath returned to Kristu Jyoti College as Professor of Church History and Patrology and remained there till his death.

                            The “Istituto Storico Salesiano” (ISS) and the “Associazione Cultori Storia Salesiana” (ACSSA) deeply mourn his death and pray for the eternal repose of his soul.

                            • India
                            • Decessi
                            • INB
                            • ISS
                            • ACSSA
                              Gian Francesco Romano

                              RMG – Salesian Family Spirituality Days: video summary available online

                              4 weeks 2 days ago
                              RMG – Salesian Family Spirituality Days: video summary available online

                              (ANS – Rome) – With more than 360 participants from 43 countries around the world, the 37th Salesian Family Spirituality Days were a new opportunity for unity and sharing among members of the spiritual and apostolic family which came about through St John Bosco. In order not to lose the results of this great occasion. A number of useful resources have been made available.

                              Holiness as a path available to everyone, even the youngest, and in daily life: this was the starting point for the Turin event, notably given greater depth by the Strenna of the Rector Major for 2019 along lines offered by Pope Francis in his Apostolic Exhortation “Gaudete et Exsultate”.

                              “Everything that happened during the days headed in this direction and all put together we were able to accomplish some wonderful things” commented Fr Joan Lluis Playa, Coordinator of the event. “Addresses by Fr Aldo Giraudo and Prof. Francesc Torralba helped us to come to a better understanding of Don Bosco’s school of holiness and what it means to experience holiness as mission.”

                              The testimonies and dialogues of group members offered examples of holiness today while the pilgrimage around significant places at the Mother House were a keen reminder of the holiness that emerged from Valdocco.

                              “What came through even more was the great family spirit among the groups, a good twenty of them represented at the Days” Fr Playa continued.  “This was something that was appreciated and pleased those who took part, along with the sense of unity around the Rector Major. The content offered was also much appreciated, along with the welcome: not to be underestimated was the great response from the Salesian Family in Turin who took part en masse, and young people from the Salesian Youth Movement in Piedmont and Valle d’Aosta, who bore the brunt of the animation”.

                              While the “7 beatitudes of the Salesian Family” are already being disseminated and shared – one of the fruits drawn up over the Days to which everyone contributed – other resources are being released to allow everyone to continue to savour the atmosphere and pass on the message that “holiness is for you too”.

                              From today in fact ANSChannel is offering the video summary of the 37th Salesian Family Spirituality Days, picking up the message of the Strenna, and reminding us of the activities experienced over recent days in Valdocco.

                              • RMG
                              • Giornate di Spiritualità della FS
                              • Famiglia Salesiana
                              • Santità
                              • Comunicazione Sociale
                                Gian Francesco Romano

                                Guatemala – Iván, a humble young man whose life was changed by “Deportivo Don Bosco” in Petén

                                4 weeks 2 days ago
                                Guatemala – Iván, a humble young man whose life was changed by “Deportivo Don Bosco” in Petén

                                (ANS – San Benito Petén) – There is a mixture of stories relating to very many children, adolescents, older youth from difficult circumstances who attend the Salesian oratory in San Benito Petén. But there are also signs of hope, thanks to the Salesian presence. In this area, says Fr Giampiero De Nardi, a Salesian missionary, “poverty impinges on life every day and it is only through education that we will be able to change things.” And in order to change things, a football team was founded some time ago at: “Deportivo Don Bosco” or “Don Bosco Sports”.

                                “Deportivo Don Bosco” is a football team at the San Benito parish, in the Guatemalan area known as Petén where the Salesians continue their traditional Salesian involvement in the oratory with young people at risk from neighbouring districts, trying to keep them away from risky activities and, at the same time, involve them in things that can change their future.

                                The Salesians took on the Parish of San Benito in 2012  and from that time, Fr de Nardi has been responsible for this vast, poor community. The Deportivo Don Bosco Club was founded in February 2016, and it allows many young men to begin their Christian journey through sport. For some footballers, belonging to a team is a source of work to support their families, thanks to the quality of the sport and the interest other clubs show in the young men.

                                A young man came to Fr de Nardi one day: “Here is one of the best footballers we have in Petén. His name is Nelso Iván García”. Iván was a humble young man, and kept his eyes cast down, but all it needed was two minutes on the field to show that he had a great future as a footballer.

                                He joined Deportivo Don Bosco and became a pillar of the team. It was one of his cousins who in fact convinced the missionary to enrol him in the third division of the Guatemalan championship, explaining that there are many boys whose lives would change if they had the possibility of success.

                                After Iván played for Petén for a season, many teams in other divisions had their eye on him. But Iván has not lost his humility, although he has already debuted in the first division and has already represented his country in the Guatemalan Under 20s.

                                Ivan always says with pride: “I belong to Deportivo Don Bosco”. Now his life has changed for the better and surely other young men from Petén, looking at his example, can change their lives.

                                • Guatemala
                                • CAM
                                • Sport
                                • Missioni
                                • San Benito Petén
                                  Gian Francesco Romano

                                  Italy – Opening of “CASA di GIÒ”, a group residential apartment helping needy young people to grow

                                  4 weeks 2 days ago
                                  Italy – Opening of “CASA di GIÒ”, a group residential apartment helping needy young people to grow

                                  (ANS – Collegno) –  The E.T. Social Cooperative, (Educators in the Territory, or Neighbourhood Educators), which is affiliated with the Salesiani per il Sociale (a Salesian Welfare organisation) opened its CASA di Giò, or Youth Home  on 9 January 2019. The opening took place in a quiet and familiar atmosphere, involving a time for prayer and an opening blessing.

                                  “CASA di GIÒ” is the first residential structure that falls under the “Group Apartment” classification and aims at offering temporary accommodation for young males between the age of 16 and 21. The project, conceived as a response to the growing needs of Turin city and its metropolitan district, wishes to help its young residents by fostering their growth at many levels: by looking after them individually, giving attention to the group, the district and the city, healing family connections. It will do all this by offering shared living family-style, supported by educators.

                                  With regard to the choice of name, those responsible explain: “Giò meaning ‘giovani’ or youth, whom we choose by preference; Giò also meaning Giovanni (John) Bosco, in memory of our founding father; Giò is also the name of one of the characters in the book ‘Piccole donne’ (Young Women), because Giò is the one who looks after the poorest kids, the ‘least’.”

                                  Thinking of those who will reside at “Casa di Giò” the Cooperative made Pope Francis’ words their own: “Let us never forget that true power is service. We need to look after people, each individual, lovingly, especially children, the elderly, those who are the weakest and who are often at the peripheries of our heart.”

                                  Hence the choice to turn to young people traumatised by sorrowful experiences, people affected by life, looking for support, accompaniment, someone to be close to them, solidarity so they can build or rebuild their own life project and thus achieve real personal autonomy which extends to where they live and work, and a positive settling into society.

                                  This educational approach to work is aimed at establishing a relationship of trust between the young worker and the educator. It is up to the educator to recognise and have others recognise each person’s resources, abilities, knowledge and then plan the path with him to the realisation of such.

                                  Residents at “Casa di Giò” will find a family dimension in this educational rapport which becomes a trusted point of reference for the individual, the setting winch welcomes him and for managing daily life.

                                  {gallery}Italia - Collegno{/gallery}

                                  • Italia
                                  • ICP
                                  • Giovani a Rischio Sociale
                                    Gian Francesco Romano

                                    Vatican – “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking”. Focus of the Church and the Salesian world on this “atrocious scourge”

                                    4 weeks 2 days ago
                                    Vatican – “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking”. Focus of the Church and the Salesian world on this “atrocious scourge”

                                    (ANS – Vatican City) – Pope Francis has never hidden his great concern over the phenomenon of human trafficking which claims millions of victims – men women and children. It is a concern not only of the Pope, but of many people within and beyond the Church who are working to counteract what the Holy Father describes as an “atrocious scourge” and a wound “in the body of contemporary humanity”. As part of the long journey of reflection and action that the Church has been conducting on the matter, today “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking” have been released.

                                    To address the trafficking and enslavement of human beings, during 2018 Migrants & Refugees (M&R) Section of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development held two consultations with Church leaders, scholars and experienced practitioners and partner organizations working in the field. Participants exchanged experiences and viewpoints, addressing relevant aspects of the phenomenon. The Church’s full response was considered, in terms of strengths, weaknesses, pastoral and political opportunities as well as enhanced coordination worldwide.

                                    This six-months process resulted in the present Pastoral Orientations on Human Trafficking, approved by the Holy Father and meant to orient the work of the M&R Section and its partners.

                                    The Orientations are for use by Catholic dioceses, parishes and religious congregations, schools and universities, by Catholic and other organizations of civil society and by any groups willing to respond. Besides their implementation in local programs as well as collaboration at a distance, the Orientations also offer key points for homilies, education and media.

                                    This 42 page document takes a wide-ranging look at the question of human trafficking, providing both a reading of the phenomenon, its causes and origins, seeking to offer an adequate understanding of its dynamics and developments in order to support the necessary struggle against human trafficking.

                                    Human trafficking, a grave crime in itself, is accompanied by other atrocities and violations of human rights, such as slave labour, using child soldiers, sexual violence and exploitation, the commercialisation of human organs…

                                    In coping with so many of these crimes, as also in the fight against and prevention of human trafficking, the Salesian Congregation and Salesian family are also very active, with various initiatives at various levels. Just to quote some examples, in the English-speaking West Africa Province (AFW) there is the “Girls Os+” program (where Os means “refuge” in Krio, the local language) run by “Don Bosco Fambul” in Freetown, Sierra Leone, for the recovery of girls who are victims of sexual exploitation; then there is the “Child Protection Centre” at Ashaiman, in Ghana, dedicated to minors whom police have rescued from slave trafficking.

                                    Furthermore, The Salesian Mission Procure, “Missioni Don Bosco” in Turin, in collaboration with the Salesian NGO “Volontariato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo” (International Voluntariate for Development, or VIS), has been conducting its “Stop Human Trafficking” campaign since 2015 opposing trafficking and promoting development opportunities in Ghana, Senegal and Ethiopia.

                                    Finally, Salesian reflection on the matter has also been carried out at the highest levels of political decision-makers thanks to VIS, who take part in the “EU Anti-trafficking Platform”; and at Don Bosco International (DBI), which is organising an event on this theme in collaboration with COMECE (Commission of the Episcopal Conferences of the European Union). The event will take place 19 February next at the European Parliament, and will involve Fr Jorge Crisafulli, SDB, the Director of Don Bosco Fambul, and a girls rescued from sexual exploitation.

                                    Continuing in the spirit of “synodality” which has produced it, this document of “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking” concludes with a request for comments and further contributions from all interested parties and individuals involved in reflection, and with a prayer that calls on the intercession of St Giuseppina Bakhita, the saintly patron of victims of human trafficking.

                                    • Vaticano
                                    • Tratta
                                    • Missioni
                                    • Pastorale Giovanile
                                    • VIS
                                    • Don Bosco International
                                      Gian Francesco Romano

                                      Panama – Panama 2019: preparations under way for the grand SYM gathering at the “Valdocco of the Americas”

                                      1 month ago
                                      Panama – Panama 2019: preparations under way for the grand SYM gathering at the “Valdocco of the Americas”

                                      (ANS – Panama City) – The various areas of the Don Bosco Technical Institute have become the focus of much excitement: it is like a human beehive. Each in his or her own way is preparing to welcome more than 800 Salesian pilgrims getting ready to experience World Youth Day 2019.

                                      The school will be hosting delegations from the Salesians and Salesian Sisters from Central America, Mexico-Guadalajara, Colombia and Bolivia. Young people from Uruguay, Ecuador, Great Britain, Mexico-Mexico and Angola will be hosted in the days leading up to the beginning of the Day.

                                      Around 300 people are at work, in seven commissions, preparing for the World Salesian Youth Movement celebrations (SYM) which will take place on Wednesday 23 January. Three thousand pilgrims are expected at this event which will take on the atmosphere of a genuine oratory, with music, colour, cheerfulness and reflection, and a special meeting with the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, and the Mother General of the Salesian Sisters, Mother Yvonne Reungoat.

                                      Young Salesians in formation from the post-novitiate, students of theology and students from the Regional Formation Centre for Salesian Brothers (CRESCO) are helping with the preparation of the logistics at the SYM event and the Salesian Family Pavilion at the vocations fair which will remain open and available to young people from around the world throughout the WYD week.

                                      This is an important display area, representing all Congregations who wish to offer an invitation to the young pilgrims. The Salesian Family Pavilion will have Salesians of Don Bosco, the Daughters of the Divine Saviour, the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Salesian Cooperators and Volunteers With Don Bosco available at all times.

                                      On the morning of 23 January, those responsible for the Salesian Youth Movement will meet in the Don Bosco Basilica, an authentic Centre of  Salesian Spirituality, the “Valdocco of the Americas”. 170 youth and religious leading Youth Ministry activities in their countries will meet here. In an eminently Salesian atmosphere, they will be able to share in the “SYM Forum”, and thus experience a time of encounter and reflection with Fr Á.F. Artime and Mother Reungoat, who will offer topics of interest to young people today.

                                      For those who cannot be physically present at these events, there are still many options for experiencing them. The Salesians in Central America will offer live coverage on their official channels: www.boletinsalesiano.info and Salesianos CS CAM, on YouTube.

                                      All SYM pilgrims are also invited to download the app of the Central American Salesian Bulletin before they leave (“Kiosko BS” on the Android platform, “Boletin Salesiano CAM” on the Apple Store), where they can already find and download the text for the SYM festivities vigil.

                                      All the information will also be available on ANS and SDB.

                                      Official SYM site 

                                      Official SYM Feast site

                                      {gallery}Panama - GMG - Preparazione{/gallery}

                                      • Panama
                                      • GMG2019
                                      • MGS Movimento Giovanile Salesiano
                                      • CAM
                                      • Comunicazione Sociale
                                        Gian Francesco Romano

                                        Vatican – Venerable Mother Anna Kaworek, Co-foundress and first Superior General of the Congregation of Sisters of St Michael the Archangel

                                        1 month ago
                                        Vatican – Venerable Mother Anna Kaworek, Co-foundress and first Superior General of the Congregation of Sisters of St Michael the Archangel

                                        (ANS – Vatican City) – On Tuesday 15 September, upon receiving Cardinal Angelo Becciu, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, the Holy Father, Pope Francis, authorised the Congregation to promote the Decree regarding the heroic virtues of Servant of God Anna Kaworek, Co-foundress and first Superior General of the Congregation of the Sisters of St Michael the Archangel; she was born in Biedrzychowice, Poland, on 18 June 1872 and died in Miejsce Piastowe, Poland, on 30 December 1936.

                                        Already in her early years of schooling the seed of a religious vocation had sprouted in young Anna but even if she knew about a number of female religious institutes, she had not yet come to any decision about her future. Only when she was 22 years old, hearing about the religious institutes that was coming into being through the efforts of Blessed Bronislaus Markiewicz, a Salesian at the time, did she answer the divine call.

                                        On 25 February 1894 she came to Miejsce Piastowe where she presented herself to the future Blessed, but she was somewhat put off, since what she saw was quite different from any convent she had in mind. After eight months stay there, she asked Fr Markiewicz for permission to return for a visit to her home and to go to the Sanctuary of Mount Sant’Anna.

                                        She returned strengthened in her vocation and dedicated herself enthusiastically to the service of the most needy. After 34 of trials and heroic fidelity, on 21 August 1928 the Servant of God, together with a group of the first Sisters, was able to rejoice at the canonical approval of her Congregation which she was immediately elected the Superior General of. She died with a reputation for holiness on 30 December 1936 at Miejsce Piastowe.

                                        The Michaelite Sisters, similar to the Fathers, are engaged especially in the education of children and older youth following the spirituality of St John Bosco, of whom Blessed Markiewicz was a spiritual son. The Patron of the Congregation is Saint Michael the Archangel.

                                        The Michaelite spirituality has two mottoes: “He who is like God” (Mi-cha-el) and “Temperance and work”. It is a union of the contemplative attitude toward God and pastoral charity for our brothers and sisters which makes this vocation ever relevant.

                                        In 2009 the Congregation of the Sisters of St Michael the Archangel became the 26th member group of the Salesian Family.

                                        • Vaticano
                                        • Suore di San Michele Arcangelo
                                        • Famiglia Salesiana
                                        • Santità Salesiana
                                        • Anna Kaworek
                                          Gian Francesco Romano
                                          ANS - Agenzia Info Salesiana. Periodico plurisettimanale telematico, organo di comunicazione della Congregazione Salesiana

                                          Panama - Inauguration of pilgrimage center of Blessed Sr. Maria Romero, FMA, in Panama2019

                                          3 weeks 3 days ago
                                          Panama - Inauguration of pilgrimage center of Blessed Sr. Maria Romero, FMA, in Panama2019

                                          (ANS - Panama City) - In the temple of Mary Help of Christians of the "Don Bosco Technical Institute" of Panama City, the pilgrimage center of the Blessed Sister Maria Romero Meneses (1902-1977), Daughter of Mary Help of Christians, was inaugurated. She is one of the patrons of the World Youth Day (WYD) 2019. Mother Yvonne Reungoat, Mother General of the FMA, cut the ribbon to open the doors of the church to the pilgrims of WYD.

                                          One year ago, a group of religious sisters was founded - Sister Inés Berríos, Sr. Marcela Ortiz, Sr. Celia López, Sr. Carolina Cruz, Sr. Araceli Pereira, Sr. Marianela Solís and Sr. Mayra Biches, as responsible - for the creation of the pilgrimage center. "We want this to be a pilgrimage through the life of the Blessed, so that after leaving the temple the pilgrims can see with the glasses and walk with the shoes of Sister Maria Romero," they said.

                                          Pilgrims enter through the main door and begin a journey of encounter with the blessed Romero, a woman in love with God: her two loves - Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and Mary Help of Christians – she called her "King" and her "Queen".

                                          Prilgrims will live the first moment in the Marian shrine through a reflection under the sign of water. The Blessed FMA asked the Virgin for water that healed and it was granted her in the foundation of the "House of the Virgin" in Costa Rica. There are testimonies of people who drank this water with great faith and received physical and spiritual healing. For the pilgrimage center, water was taken from the same source in Costa Rica.

                                          Continuing the journey, pilgrims reach the central nave of the temple, where there is the dream of the two columns of Don Bosco represented, and where one can reflect on the Salesian dimension. After a meeting with the Blessed Sacrament, the historical route, one arrives at the altar of the relic of the Blessed Sister Romero.

                                          The center is already open and being visited by pilgrims since, in these days of the WYD, it hosts many young people from the Salesian world.

                                          The exposed relic was donated by the Archbishop of Panama City, Msgr. José Domingo Ulloa, at the Technical Institute of Don Bosco, and it will remain there for public veneration.

                                          {gallery}Panama - Centro sr Panama{/gallery}

                                          • Panama
                                          • Panama2019
                                          • GMG2019
                                          • Maria Romero Meneses
                                          • FMA Figlie di Maria Ausiliatrice
                                          • Santità Salesiana
                                            Gian Francesco Romano

                                            Panama - The WYD of young indigenous people, before Panama2019

                                            3 weeks 3 days ago
                                            Panama - The WYD of young indigenous people, before Panama2019

                                            (ANS - Soloy) - An authentic novelty, as part of the World Youth Day: the one represented by the World Meeting of Indigenous Youth, which was also held in Panama, in the village of Soloy, just before the start of the WYD, on January 17-21. "Go back to the culture of the origins. Take charge of your roots, because from the roots comes the strength that makes you grow," said a video message by Pope Francis to the young indigenous participants.

                                            The World Meeting of Indigenous Youth, also called "the WYD of young indigenous people", answers to a special sensitivity of Pope Francis, who has dedicated several talks to the indigenous peoples, and has often in his apostolic journeys wanted to meet delegations of the native peoples, and who included the theme of the indigenous peoples among the fundamentals of the Special Synod for the Panamazonic Region to be held in October 2019.

                                            Approximately 350 young people from 13 different Latin American countries took part in the event.

                                            On the first day, the program of activities provided a focus on the living memory of the indigent peoples, while the second, on the struggle to maintain harmony with the earth, starting from the richness of cultures and in the light of Pope Francis' encyclical "Laudato Sì". The last day included a reflection on the importance of the active participation of young indigenous peoples in the construction of another possible world and the concluding Eucharist, presided over by Cardinal José Luis Lacunza, bishop of David, Panama.

                                            Each day began with a moment of joy through animation, singing, music and dancing and always closed with cultural events prepared by local groups. In the middle, in addition to reflections and discussions, there was always space for prayer expressed in the different cultural identities, pilgrimages, dynamics, concerts and ecological activities.

                                            "We thought of a pre-Day experience as a 'bridge experience', where young indigenous people could come from their towns and share the good and bad of the societies in which they live," explained one of the organizers.

                                            "Many see us as crazy, for how we dress, for how we talk ... It's not like that. We simply do not have the same opportunities as people in cities," complains an indigenous young woman.

                                            In his video message, Pope Francis showed appreciation for the initiative, which shows "the indigenous face of our Church in the WYD environment" and recalls "our commitment to protect our common home and to collaborate in the construction of another possible world, more egalitarian and more humane."

                                            • Panama
                                            • Panama2019
                                            • GMG2019
                                            • Indigeni
                                            • Papa Francesco
                                              Gian Francesco Romano

                                              Panama - #WeAreDonBosco: Salesian Missionary Offices' proposal to young people of Panama2019

                                              3 weeks 3 days ago
                                              Panama - #WeAreDonBosco: Salesian Missionary Offices' proposal to young people of Panama2019

                                              (ANS - Panama City) - "We Are Don Bosco": this is the motto, translated into various languages, that the Salesian Missionary Offices of the whole world launch on the occasion of the WYD of Panama2019 and in view of the Feast of the Saint of Youth scheduled for January 31st. The thousands of pilgrims from the Salesian areas who have gathered these days in Panama are therefore invited to bear witness to their Salesianity by spreading the message: #WeAreDonBosco.

                                              There are several reasons that led to this initiative. First of all, the peculiarity of this January, already in itself the "Salesian month", but this year there is also the WYD, which takes place in a country that loves Don Bosco viscerally.

                                              Then there is the desire for collaboration and unity among the various Salesian Missionary Offices, which is also expressed through messages and common communication projects.

                                              And then there is the reality of the young people of the Salesian Youth Movement (SYM) at the WYD. Every WYD, in fact, sees the SYM at the forefront, and when it comes to youth spirituality, joy, solidarity and sharing, always stands at center stage and is, moreover, a model of the worldwide network among the young faithful.

                                              At WYD it is easy to note the Salesian specificity: the welcome that precedes and accompanies the pilgrims, the formative and spiritual journey that accompanies the official appointments of the "Day", the joy of those who live similar experiences that take place at a distance of a continent away, the hymns to Don Bosco in the different languages and in the different musical styles, the conspicuous numbers of groups, and more.

                                              The proposal to young people is now simple: to those in Panama, do share your photos and posts using the hashtags#WeAreDonBosco and #IAmSalesian, in addition to the others suggested by the WYD. Thus, the ideal link will be made to all those who belong to the Salesian world. Indeed, this will also allow those who could not go to Panama to feel part of the celebrations.

                                              With "We Are Don Bosco" we want to spread the message that Don Bosco is still alive today: in the 30,000 religious men and women serving the most needy young people, following his model and his style; in the 3 million people who have gone through Salesian training programs; in the 5,500 Salesian schools in the world, in the 330 shelters for young people in difficulty, in the 1,100 vocational training centers …

                                              Further information is available at www.missionidonbosco.org and at http://salesianmissions.org/wyd. From the latter, it is possible to download, in English and Spanish, a specific prayer for the young people of WYD to request the intercession of Don Bosco.

                                              • Panama2019
                                              • Panama
                                              • GMG2019
                                              • Procure Missionarie
                                              • Comunicazione Sociale
                                                Gian Francesco Romano

                                                Panama - Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, arrives in Panama2019

                                                3 weeks 4 days ago
                                                Panama - Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, arrives in Panama2019

                                                (ANS - Panama City) - Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major of the Salesians, arrived yesterday, Monday, January 21st, at the Basilica of Don Bosco in Panama to accompany the youth who will participate in the World Youth Day (WYD) and the world festival of the Salesian Youth Movement (SYM).

                                                As early as two o'clock in the afternoon the Salesian delegations were present in the courtyard of the Basilica of Don Bosco to receive the Rector Major. During the wait there reigned an oratorian party atmosphere, with the young people busy singing, dancing, joking, telling each other their  experiences, spontaneously making new friends.

                                                Then, at 6:15 pm, amid applauses, ovations and songs, Fr Á.F. Artime made his way through the young people crowded together to take a selfie with him or to give a welcome hug to the Successor of Don Bosco. In a natural and spontaneous fashion, some space gave way, bounded by the flags of different countries, for the encounter. At the end of the route one could glimpse the exact replica of the "Becchi" house - Don Bosco's birthplace - built at the Salesian center, the "Valdocco of America".

                                                Fr Rómulo Gallegos, SDB, Director of the House, welcomed the Rector Major and thanked him for his visit. The Superior of the Salesian Congregation greeted all those present, spoke of his long journey and expressed his joy and happiness in finding himself among the young.

                                                "We want to make a journey of fidelity to the Lord. I am the first who wants to continue to learn to be truly faithful to Jesus, and to do it with you, my dear young people, is a wonderful gift. We shall have time to share and to greet each other before meeting the Pope and the young people of the world," said Fr Á.F. Artime before an audience of boys and girls from all over the world who listened to him with attention and admiration.

                                                Tomorrow, January 23rd, the Rector Major, together with the Mother General of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Mother Yvonne Reungoat, will give a message to all the young people of the Salesian community present at WYD, as part of the worldwide celebration of the SYM.

                                                After the WYD, the Rector Major will remain in Panama to celebrate Don Bosco's triduum and the great feast of 31 January together with the Panamanian community, which in Don Bosco celebrates its patron saint.

                                                • Panama2019
                                                • Panama
                                                • Rettor Maggiore
                                                • Ángel Fernández Artime
                                                • GMG2019
                                                • MGS Movimento Giovanile Salesiano
                                                  Gian Francesco Romano

                                                  Palestine - One million rosaries from the Holy Land to WYD of Panama2019

                                                  3 weeks 4 days ago
                                                  Palestine - One million rosaries from the Holy Land to WYD of Panama2019

                                                  (ANS - Bethlehem) - Panama2019's World Youth Day (WYD) has already begun. In the Latin American country, one million rosaries have arrived from Bethlehem, which the Holy Father will give to the young people who have gathered for this great event, scheduled from today, 22 January, to Sunday 27. "This initiative is essential because, on the one hand, it stimulates prayer and, on the other, it helps support our brothers and sisters in the Holy Land," said the archbishop of Panama, mgr. José Domingo Ulloa Mendieta, underlining the importance of this project.

                                                  The rosaries were made of olive wood in the city of birth of Jesus, and they traveled 12,000 kilometers to reach Panama. They are part of the "AVE GMG" project, inspired by the appeal of Pope Francis to pray for peace in the world. The initiative was born from the Swiss association "Saint Jean-Marie Vianney" of Lausanne and "Caritas Jerusalem", led by the bishop emeritus of Reykjavik, Iceland, Msgr. Pierre Bürcher.

                                                  The Pontifical Foundation "Aid to the Church in Need" (ACS) contributed to the project with a donation of 100 thousand euros for the creation of the small wreaths. "A gift already in itself precious," comments the director of ACS Italia, Alessandro Monteduro, "which is made even more special by the fact that the rosaries were made by the Christian craftsmen of Bethlehem."

                                                  There are over 350,000 Christians who have abandoned Bethlehem since the creation of the State of Israel in 1948. A hemorrhage that is closely linked to economic difficulties and the high rate of unemployment among Christians.

                                                  The approximately 200 families of Bethlehem who have worked for months to make one million rosaries for WYD will be supported for a whole year. "They are grateful for the support received, but above all they are happy to know that hundreds of thousands of young people in Panama will pray for peace, reciting the Rosary with the wreaths they have made," continues Monteduro.

                                                  "Here I am, I am the servant of the Lord, let it be done to me what you have said" (Lk 1:38) is the motto of Panama2019, and represents the first Marian theme motto of a WYD.

                                                  "The Virgin Mary is the mother of all: this is why the young are called to trust Her, because She is the queen of peace and if we do the will of the Lord all men, women and young people of good will, we can gradually create peace, starting from our hearts, starting from Jerusalem," said Msgr. Bürcher.

                                                  WYD has involved many people in the devotion to the Holy Rosary. This is the case of female inmates of the "Cecilia Orillac de Chiari" Women's Rehabilitation Center in Panama, 60 of whom made ring rosaries and other religious objects to be offered to young people during the WYD.

                                                  • Palestina
                                                  • Preghiera
                                                  • GMG2019
                                                  • Panama
                                                    Gian Francesco Romano

                                                    Brazil - "Missionary Action" brings Salesian youth to meet one's neighbour

                                                    3 weeks 4 days ago

                                                    (ANS - São Paulo- From 6 to 13 January, as was tradition among the young people in Salesian circles, another edition of "Missionary Action" took place, a project carried out by the Youth Ministry of the "Mary Help of Christians" Province of Brazil - São Paulo  (BSP) through the Missionary Animation Service.

                                                    by Anderson Bueno

                                                    This year, 2019, the parishes that welcomed the young missionaries were those of "Santa Teresinha", in Araraquaraquara, the parish of "Nossa Senhora da Conceição", in Cunha; the parish of "São Francisco", in Monte Verde-MG; the parish of "Nossa Senhora Aparecida", in Santa Izabel; the parish "Sagrada Família" and the Pastoral Area of "São Sebastião", in Itaim Paulista, São Paulo.

                                                    Missionary Action always takes place in January, because it is a month of holidays for young people, and is led by young people of the "Missionary Action Groups" (GAM) of Salesian houses scattered throughout the State of São Paulo. During the week, young people interact with the community by reciting the luminous rosary, participating in the celebrations, making visits and blessings to the houses and also organizing workshops for children, young people and adults.

                                                    The fulfillment of a missionary project like this also affects the life of the parishes that welcome it. It gives courage to the pastoral workers, brings people close together, brings the parish into contact with people and families who until then had not attended the parish community, and offers strong moments of fraternity and spirituality.

                                                    "It is foolish for strangers to see you leave the comfort of your home to go to an unknown place to speak of Jesus. But, as St. Paul says in the First Letter to the Corinthians: The word of the Cross is in fact folly for those who go into perdition, but to us who are being saved, it is the power of God," says the missionary Mariana Borges Rezende, 22, of the GAM of Sorocaba.

                                                    Because of the similarity, Missionary Action is sometimes confused with the Mission Week, which is held in July. The proposals are similar, but the young people taking part in the January event are already more mature in their faith by participating in the GAM and their local communities. In July, the Missionary Week allows, in many cases, young people in social works and schools to have their first contact with a missionary project that leads them to go to others.

                                                    In both cases, these are worthy projects that do good for both those who work as missionaries, and for the communities that receive them.

                                                    {gallery}BSP - Azione missionaria{/gallery}

                                                    • Brasile
                                                    • BSP
                                                    • Missioni
                                                      Gian Francesco Romano

                                                      Italy - Feast of Salesian Family of Lazio, amidst holiness and extraordinary generosity

                                                      3 weeks 5 days ago
                                                      Italy - Feast of Salesian Family of Lazio, amidst holiness and extraordinary generosity

                                                      (ANS - Rome) - The Feast of the Salesian Family of Lazio, celebrated yesterday, Sunday, January 20, at the "Don Bosco Theater" of Cinecittà in Rome, saw a large number of participants rediscover, thanks to the theater, the figure of the Saint of Youth. The Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, also intervened, calling attention to the possibility of holiness for all and a gesture of extraordinary generosity.

                                                      by Aurelio Marinelli, SDB

                                                      The nuclei of the festive afternoon was the show that Laura Curino and Simone Derai presented, a tale narrating the intelligence and the spirit able to transform extraordinary men into "social saints", in the Piedmont of the 19th century.

                                                      Also present at the feast was Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Rector Major of the Salesians, who thanked the theatrical company for having shown the reality of the Salesian charism born at the Pinardi home.

                                                      "The trail of Piedmontese holiness," said Fr Á.F. Artime, "found in Valdocco a fertile soil, which made great figures of holiness directly or indirectly linked to our Family flourish."

                                                      The Rector Major then said that a few days after Christmas, greetings from Uganda arrived from a Salesian of the Salesian headquarters who'd visited two presences of the Congregation among the poorest youth, one in Palabek, which hosts about 42 thousand refugees.

                                                      "A year ago, on the feast day of Don Bosco," the Rector Major continued, "we opened a presence with a small community. Without houses, without church, in the middle of the refugee camp, with the people of the camp. I received from this confrere two envelopes with offers for me, with the commitment to donate them to the needy young people. I felt a great emotion: they, the poorest of the poor, who put aside a small amount of money for people in need like them. I wanted to tell you this because it is precisely the story that today, through this representation, you have told all of us. This is a sign of Don Bosco who wants to remind us that the human heart is the most precious and generous reality that exists in the world."

                                                      Fr Artime greeted those present, saying that the next morning he would be leaving for Panama to participate in the WYD and the great events planned for the feast of Don Bosco.

                                                      {gallery}ICC - Santa Impresa ex post{/gallery}

                                                      • Italia
                                                      • ICC
                                                      • Rettor Maggiore
                                                      • Ángel Fernández Artime
                                                      • Uganda
                                                      • Palabek
                                                      • Famiglia Salesiana
                                                        Gian Francesco Romano

                                                        Panama - World youth festival begins with volunteers with a Salesian heart: Panama 2019

                                                        3 weeks 5 days ago
                                                        Panama - World youth festival begins with volunteers with a Salesian heart: Panama 2019

                                                        (ANS - Panama City) - Just a few hours to go before the World Youth Day (WYD) of Panama 2019 begins, an event prepared with a highly precise organization. The Salesians were the first to take up this challenge. And in the spirit of service, driven by the love of God, thousands of people, from the youngest to the oldest, have decided to be part of the organization of the greatest event of the Catholic Church, to be witnesses of God's love.

                                                        Ever since Pope Francis announced the WYD of Panama 2019, Panamanians and foreigners have not hesitated to give their support in its preparation, with the objective that young people all over the world live an experience of a true encounter with Jesus.

                                                        At the Basilica of Don Bosco in Panama there are 234 people who have accepted the call to service, dividing themselves into commissions: accommodation, transport, ecology, administration, logistics, catechesis, health, technical support and communication. Volunteers prepare themselves on an organizational and spiritual level, receiving formation and training, subdivided into four modules: general information of the WYD, history of the Panamanian Church, service and civilization.

                                                        Fpr its part, the Don Bosco Technical Institute in Panama (ITDB) hosts 1,100 pilgrims from Salesian circles. The first of these pilgrims began to arrive as early as last Friday, January 18, all greeted with a warm welcome, ovations, songs and applause. "Having the house full of these young people is a dream come true. We have been preparing for your arrival for a long time, with joy and enthusiasm. We want you to feel at home!," said Fr Alex Figueroa, Director of ITDB, during Sunday Mass celebrated specifically for the young.

                                                        "Being here is beautiful. It does not matter if we come from different countries. We are all 'Salesians' and this is enough to be friends, to be a family. Panama welcomed us with great affection and joy," said Marco Andino, Coordinator of the Honduran delegation.

                                                        The Salesian News Agency (ANS) has sent a team to Panama to follow the event. Timely information on WYD, the meetings of the Holy Father, the appointments of the Rector Major with the SYM and Salesian activities will be published on the news website, on the agency's Facebook page (which will host live broadcasts) and on other social networks. Photos will be uploaded to ANSFlickr.

                                                        For general information on WYD: https://panama2019.pa/en/home/ 

                                                        To see what has been achieved since Pope Francis announced the Panama WYD 2019: https://www.flickr.com/photos/panama2019/page1 

                                                        "To place oneself at the service of others," said the Holy Father in his message to the young people participating in WYD 2019, "does not just mean being ready for action; we must also engage in dialogue with God, in an attitude of listening, as Mary did."

                                                        {gallery}Panama - Volontari e arrivi{/gallery}

                                                        • Panama
                                                        • CAM
                                                        • GMG2019
                                                        • Pastorale Giovanile
                                                        • Volontariato
                                                          Gian Francesco Romano

                                                          RMG – 2019: a missionary year!

                                                          3 weeks 5 days ago
                                                          RMG – 2019: a missionary year!

                                                          (ANS - Rome) - 2019 marks the centenary of the promulgation of the Apostolic Letter "Maximum illud", with which Pope Benedict XV sought to give new impetus to the missionary task of proclaiming the Gospel. This is why Pope Francis has called the "Extraordinary Missionary Month" this coming October. In this perspective, the traditional Salesian Mission Day (SMD) 2019 takes on a particular meaning.

                                                          The Apostolic Letter Maximum Illud called for transcending national boundaries and bearing witness, with prophetic spirit and evangelical boldness, to God’s saving will through the Church’s universal mission. May the approaching centenary of that Letter serve as an incentive to combat the recurring temptation lurking beneath every form of ecclesial introversion, self-referential retreat into comfort zones, pastoral pessimism and sterile nostalgia for the past. Instead, may we be open to the joyful newness of the Gospel," Pope Francis wrote in announcing the proclamation of the extraordinary missionary month.

                                                          The official website of the Extraordinary Missionary Month is available on the web: http://www.october2019.va/it.html.

                                                          Meanwhile, the Sector for Salesian Missions has already broadcast the motto of the Salesian Missionary Day 2019, officially launched on the day of the Epiphany: "Without knowing it, they have welcomed angels" (Hebrews 13: 2).

                                                          Like every year, the SMD explores a specific theme, in a given continental reality. This year the choice fell on the "First Announcement among refugees and displaced persons in Africa".

                                                          Along with the motto, the first resources for the animation of the SMD are already being shared. The poster and the card with the prayer are on their way to the provinces around he globe and in February more material for animation and videos will be available in the six most spoken languages in the Congregation.

                                                          The poster presents two girls, where one welcomes the other. It is a symbol of the value of African hospitality, Africa that welcomes Africa. "The greatest migration of our time is the intra-African one, where millions of people are forced to travel," the Missions Sector explains.

                                                          In the background one can see the realities of refugee camps and settlements; pastoral and educational activities, especially in vocational training; and the Salesians who are present with refugees and displaced persons, sharing their lives.

                                                          "The theme focuses our attention on the challenge of this frontier full of young people, who await the friendship of Salesians, their oratories, schools, vocational training ... and the Good News of Jesus. But the theme," says the Sector for Salesian Missions, "is also an opportunity to live and promote the evangelical virtue of hospitality, that capacity to welcome, to open our homes, our hands, our hearts to others, especially those who find themselves most in need. In doing so, we welcome angels, the same Lord."

                                                          • RMG
                                                          • Missioni
                                                          • Giornata Missionaria Salesiana
                                                          • Giornata Missionaria Mondiale
                                                            Gian Francesco Romano

                                                            RMG – The Rector Major’s “goodnight”: “We are convinced that our mission is to be with the most needy young people”

                                                            4 weeks 1 day ago
                                                            RMG – The Rector Major’s “goodnight”: “We are convinced that our mission is to be with the most needy young people”

                                                            (ANS – Rome) – “As is customary, I have the opportunity to give you a ‘good night’, for two reasons: to tell you about the work of the Winter Plenary Session of the General Council, and to thank you for the work that you do for the good of the Salesian Congregation around the world.” These were Fr Ángel Fernández Artime’s words as Rector Major on the evening of 17 January at the conclusion of the General Council’s work.

                                                            Four Provincials were appointed during this session: Fr Choi Wonchol, South Korea (KOR), Fr Tadeusz Jarecki for Warsaw, Poland (PLE), Fr Ignacio Ocampo Uribe for Guadalajara, Mexico (MEM),and Fr Daniel Federspiel, reconfirmed as Provincial of France-Belgium South.

                                                            Five Vice-provincials were also appointed, one Provincial Economer, 20 Provincial Councillors, 45 Rectors and three Novice Masters. At the same time 9 extraordinary Visitations carried out by General Council members on behalf of the Rector Major in the preceding months were studied: Thailand (THA), Slovenia (SLO), India-Hyderabad (INH), Bolivia (BOL), Argentina South (ARS), Mexico-Guadalajara (MEG), Chile (CIL), English-speaking West Africa (AFW) and Slovakia (SLK).

                                                            The Rector Major also said that “at the moment we do not know exactly how many we are in the Salesian Congregation because many young people are making their religious profession in the coming months, but we can say that we are a Congregation increasing in numbers. At the moment there are 14,489 SDBs, and I can state” the Rector Major continued  “that ours is the Congregation with the largest number of novices.”

                                                            “One of the topics that gives us great hope is the numbers” the Rector Major concluded. On 31 December 2018 there were 2,060 newly professed, and this is reason for hope. We need to thank God for this gift. We are convinced that our mission is to be with the most needy young people, and we need to be very attentive to houses of formation and formators. This can make the difference in the coming six years in order to continue growth in vocations, while still guaranteeing the ongoing formation of every Salesian.”

                                                            • RMG
                                                            • Consiglio Generale
                                                            • Rettor Maggiore
                                                            • Vocazioni
                                                            • Ángel Fernández Artime
                                                              Gian Francesco Romano

                                                              Dominican Republic – Youth Going Forth, a missionary Church

                                                              4 weeks 1 day ago
                                                              Dominican Republic – Youth Going Forth, a missionary Church

                                                              (ANS – Santo Domingo) – “Jóvenes en Salida” (Youth Going Forth) is a program thought up to remind young people of their commitment as baptised lay people and to sensitise them to being missionaries and disciples of the Lord and to live out this responsibility in community, and indeed in Salesian Missionary Communities.

                                                              Through learning projects carried out over two years, those taking part in the ‘Youth Going Forth’ program will gain the ability to carry out effective community tasks aimed at solidarity and holistic promotion of the community in which they are working; at the same time they will be accompanied in their activities of evangelisation and promotion in their communities of origin.

                                                              Those taking part in the project are young adults who are or have been involved in community leadership tasks in Salesian works; once formed through the “Young Peopl going Forth” program they will be ready to become members of Salesian Missionary Communities – communities of young people intending to respond to God’s call to a missionary vocation ad gentes: “go out to all the world and proclaim the Good News to all of creation.”

                                                              One of the addresses given at the Youth Going Forth program is “Epiphany Going Forth”, an initiative meant to develop supportive commitment among the youth, allowing them to mature in their choice of community life and lay involvement.

                                                              This initiative, after due preparation, will be put into action at the Feast of the Epiphany in January next, and is meant to be a real “epiphany” (a “manifestation”, “revelation”) of God’s love for our neighbour.

                                                              “We would like to be the manifestation of the love that was revealed, became flesh, took on our human history with all its consequences”, say those responsible for the initiative, also quoting John’s Letter (1 Jn 4:8) which reminds us that “God is love” and that love is God’s characteristic attribute, as well as being his most attractive one.

                                                              The formation process of Youth Going Forth sees that the experience of the learning project in service to others is framed within the notion of “Supportive Commitment” and involves awareness of the place for mission (communities on the periphery) and approach to people and existing social structures. This way the young people have a practical experience of being sensitive to the needs of their neighbour, to responsibility, solidarity, commitment and proclamation of the Gospel.

                                                              {gallery}ANT - Giovani in uscita 2019{/gallery}

                                                              • ANT
                                                              • Repubblica Dominicana
                                                              • Missioni
                                                              • Volontariato
                                                              • Laici
                                                                Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                India – Tragic accident involves a Salesian school community

                                                                4 weeks 1 day ago
                                                                India – Tragic accident involves a Salesian school community

                                                                (ANS – Ahmednagar) – Yesterday, Thursday, 17 January 2019, Fr James Tuscano, four staff and 44 students of DB Savedi, Ahmednagar, were returning from Vasai by bus. Around 7 pm, the bus met with an accident and rammed into a pick-up vehicle. Mr Arun Jadhav, a senior teacher of the School, the driver of the pick-up and the cleaner of the bus have died.

                                                                Last night, one staff and 32 students returned to Ahmednagar. Fr Tuscano, two staff members, and 12 students had some injuries; they were taken to close-by hospitals for treatment and observation. This morning, they, too, are returning to Ahmednagar.

                                                                “We pray for the repose of the deceased, and for the complete recovery of the injured” has said Fr Vinod Mascarenhas, SDB, Provincial Secretary on India-Mumbai province (INB).

                                                                • India
                                                                • INB
                                                                • Disastri
                                                                  Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                  RMG – “Ricerche Storiche Salesiane” no. 71

                                                                  4 weeks 1 day ago
                                                                  RMG – “Ricerche Storiche Salesiane” no. 71

                                                                  (ANS – Roma) – Number 71 of “Ricerche Storiche Salesiane” (RSS), the July-December 2018 edition, has just been published. This is the Journal of religious and civil history published by the Salesian Historical Institute (ISS).

                                                                  The STUDIES (Studi) section has the following contributions:

                                                                  Understanding the mission of the Church in the letters of Bishop Giuseppe Fagnano”, by Antonio Scudero. This essay analyses Fr Fagnano’s correspondence with Don Bosco, Fr Rua, Bishop Cagliero and other Salesians. The letters show the development and crises in Fr Fagnano’s missionary activity, as well as the maturing of pastoral awareness that lay behind an extraordinary activity due to his dedication, spirit of sacrifice and understanding of the circumstances of the indigenous peoples.

                                                                  “Salesians in Italy during the First World War” is a study by Francesco Motto. This conflict, which disrupted the daily lives of millions of European families, had a very strong impact also on the 2,000 or more Salesians in Italy, who at a time of serious emergency remained faithful to their charism as educators and at the same time did not fail to show that they were religious, citizens, Christians and patriots.

                                                                  The third contribution is by Thomas Anchunkandam on the subject of “Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore: history and significance of the opening of the first Salesian Institute in the Archdiocese of Bangalore.” This number of the RSS offers the first of three parts to this study and examines both the reason for the enthusiasm of the Salesians in having a presence in Bangalore,  and the reasons for the failure of earlier attempts.

                                                                  The SOURCES (Fonti) section presents the text:

                                                                  “Regulations for the Immaculate Conception Sodality approved by Don Bosco on 9 June 1856”, a critical edition of one of the most important sources, edited by Rodolfo Bogotto. The Immaculate Conception Sodality came into being on 8 June 1856 at Valdocco, due to the initiative of a number of boys, including Dominic Savio, who came together and placed themselves under the protection of Mary Immaculate. They drew up some regulations offering indications for a simple path to formation, but at a high level. They committed themselves to accompanying new members, the “more unruly ones” and the “more ignorant”. A good number of these members later formed the original core group of the Salesian Congregation.

                                                                  The edition is completed by items offered in the “Notes” (Note) section – “Filling the space: Don Bosco’s letters to missionaries” by Nicola Bottiglieri; and “Cardinal August Hlond: the weight of responsibility and courage in decision-making” by Zygmunt Zieliński – the  Reviews (Recensioni) of a number of publications on Salesian activities and personalities, and one contribution in the Notifications (Segnalazioni) section.

                                                                  • RMG
                                                                  • Ricerche Storiche Salesiane
                                                                  • Giuseppe Fagnano
                                                                  • Guerra
                                                                    Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                    India – Father Joseph Thekadathu SDB, pre-eminent Church historian in the country, has passed away

                                                                    4 weeks 1 day ago
                                                                    India – Father Joseph Thekadathu SDB, pre-eminent Church historian in the country, has passed away

                                                                    (ANS – Bangalore) – Eminent Salesian historian, Fr Joseph Thekkedath SDB, passed away on Tuesday, 15 January 2019 at the age of 91. Following a fall he had sustained a few days earlier, he was confined to his room in Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore, and the end came quite unexpectedly yet serenely at 9.15 p.m.

                                                                    By Fr Thomas Anchukandam, SDB

                                                                    Direttore – ISS

                                                                    The funeral services were conducted at Kristu Jyoti College, the Salesian studentate of theology, Bangalore, at 2.00 p.m. on Thursday, 17 January and his mortal remains laid to rest in the cemetery adjacent to the College Chapel.

                                                                    Fr Joseph Thekkedath, a former President of the Church History Association of India (CHAI) and indisputably the pre-eminent Church historian in the country, was also a member of the Associazione Cultori Storia Salesiana (ACSSA). His contribution to the history of the Church in India is his History of Christianity in India, Vol. II – From the Middle of the Sixteenth Century to the End of the Seventeenth Century (Theological Publications of India, Bangalore 1982). His monumental two-volume work, A History of the Salesians of Don Bosco in India from the Beginning up to 1951-52 (Kristu Jyoti Publications, Bangalore 2005) is arguably the only scientifically pursued historical writing of any region/country in the entire Congregation.

                                                                    Besides being a scholar of great merit, Fr Thekkedath also served as the Rector of Sacred Heart Seminary, Poonamallee, Chennai (1970-’74) founded in 1936 by Archbishop Louis Mathias sdb; Rector of Kristu Jyoti College, Bangalore (1981-’85) and Provincial of the Sacred Heart Province of Bangalore (1985-1991). After his term as Provincial, Fr Thekkedath returned to Kristu Jyoti College as Professor of Church History and Patrology and remained there till his death.

                                                                    The “Istituto Storico Salesiano” (ISS) and the “Associazione Cultori Storia Salesiana” (ACSSA) deeply mourn his death and pray for the eternal repose of his soul.

                                                                    • India
                                                                    • Decessi
                                                                    • INB
                                                                    • ISS
                                                                    • ACSSA
                                                                      Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                      RMG – Salesian Family Spirituality Days: video summary available online

                                                                      4 weeks 2 days ago
                                                                      RMG – Salesian Family Spirituality Days: video summary available online

                                                                      (ANS – Rome) – With more than 360 participants from 43 countries around the world, the 37th Salesian Family Spirituality Days were a new opportunity for unity and sharing among members of the spiritual and apostolic family which came about through St John Bosco. In order not to lose the results of this great occasion. A number of useful resources have been made available.

                                                                      Holiness as a path available to everyone, even the youngest, and in daily life: this was the starting point for the Turin event, notably given greater depth by the Strenna of the Rector Major for 2019 along lines offered by Pope Francis in his Apostolic Exhortation “Gaudete et Exsultate”.

                                                                      “Everything that happened during the days headed in this direction and all put together we were able to accomplish some wonderful things” commented Fr Joan Lluis Playa, Coordinator of the event. “Addresses by Fr Aldo Giraudo and Prof. Francesc Torralba helped us to come to a better understanding of Don Bosco’s school of holiness and what it means to experience holiness as mission.”

                                                                      The testimonies and dialogues of group members offered examples of holiness today while the pilgrimage around significant places at the Mother House were a keen reminder of the holiness that emerged from Valdocco.

                                                                      “What came through even more was the great family spirit among the groups, a good twenty of them represented at the Days” Fr Playa continued.  “This was something that was appreciated and pleased those who took part, along with the sense of unity around the Rector Major. The content offered was also much appreciated, along with the welcome: not to be underestimated was the great response from the Salesian Family in Turin who took part en masse, and young people from the Salesian Youth Movement in Piedmont and Valle d’Aosta, who bore the brunt of the animation”.

                                                                      While the “7 beatitudes of the Salesian Family” are already being disseminated and shared – one of the fruits drawn up over the Days to which everyone contributed – other resources are being released to allow everyone to continue to savour the atmosphere and pass on the message that “holiness is for you too”.

                                                                      From today in fact ANSChannel is offering the video summary of the 37th Salesian Family Spirituality Days, picking up the message of the Strenna, and reminding us of the activities experienced over recent days in Valdocco.

                                                                      • RMG
                                                                      • Giornate di Spiritualità della FS
                                                                      • Famiglia Salesiana
                                                                      • Santità
                                                                      • Comunicazione Sociale
                                                                        Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                        Guatemala – Iván, a humble young man whose life was changed by “Deportivo Don Bosco” in Petén

                                                                        4 weeks 2 days ago
                                                                        Guatemala – Iván, a humble young man whose life was changed by “Deportivo Don Bosco” in Petén

                                                                        (ANS – San Benito Petén) – There is a mixture of stories relating to very many children, adolescents, older youth from difficult circumstances who attend the Salesian oratory in San Benito Petén. But there are also signs of hope, thanks to the Salesian presence. In this area, says Fr Giampiero De Nardi, a Salesian missionary, “poverty impinges on life every day and it is only through education that we will be able to change things.” And in order to change things, a football team was founded some time ago at: “Deportivo Don Bosco” or “Don Bosco Sports”.

                                                                        “Deportivo Don Bosco” is a football team at the San Benito parish, in the Guatemalan area known as Petén where the Salesians continue their traditional Salesian involvement in the oratory with young people at risk from neighbouring districts, trying to keep them away from risky activities and, at the same time, involve them in things that can change their future.

                                                                        The Salesians took on the Parish of San Benito in 2012  and from that time, Fr de Nardi has been responsible for this vast, poor community. The Deportivo Don Bosco Club was founded in February 2016, and it allows many young men to begin their Christian journey through sport. For some footballers, belonging to a team is a source of work to support their families, thanks to the quality of the sport and the interest other clubs show in the young men.

                                                                        A young man came to Fr de Nardi one day: “Here is one of the best footballers we have in Petén. His name is Nelso Iván García”. Iván was a humble young man, and kept his eyes cast down, but all it needed was two minutes on the field to show that he had a great future as a footballer.

                                                                        He joined Deportivo Don Bosco and became a pillar of the team. It was one of his cousins who in fact convinced the missionary to enrol him in the third division of the Guatemalan championship, explaining that there are many boys whose lives would change if they had the possibility of success.

                                                                        After Iván played for Petén for a season, many teams in other divisions had their eye on him. But Iván has not lost his humility, although he has already debuted in the first division and has already represented his country in the Guatemalan Under 20s.

                                                                        Ivan always says with pride: “I belong to Deportivo Don Bosco”. Now his life has changed for the better and surely other young men from Petén, looking at his example, can change their lives.

                                                                        • Guatemala
                                                                        • CAM
                                                                        • Sport
                                                                        • Missioni
                                                                        • San Benito Petén
                                                                          Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                          Italy – Opening of “CASA di GIÒ”, a group residential apartment helping needy young people to grow

                                                                          4 weeks 2 days ago
                                                                          Italy – Opening of “CASA di GIÒ”, a group residential apartment helping needy young people to grow

                                                                          (ANS – Collegno) –  The E.T. Social Cooperative, (Educators in the Territory, or Neighbourhood Educators), which is affiliated with the Salesiani per il Sociale (a Salesian Welfare organisation) opened its CASA di Giò, or Youth Home  on 9 January 2019. The opening took place in a quiet and familiar atmosphere, involving a time for prayer and an opening blessing.

                                                                          “CASA di GIÒ” is the first residential structure that falls under the “Group Apartment” classification and aims at offering temporary accommodation for young males between the age of 16 and 21. The project, conceived as a response to the growing needs of Turin city and its metropolitan district, wishes to help its young residents by fostering their growth at many levels: by looking after them individually, giving attention to the group, the district and the city, healing family connections. It will do all this by offering shared living family-style, supported by educators.

                                                                          With regard to the choice of name, those responsible explain: “Giò meaning ‘giovani’ or youth, whom we choose by preference; Giò also meaning Giovanni (John) Bosco, in memory of our founding father; Giò is also the name of one of the characters in the book ‘Piccole donne’ (Young Women), because Giò is the one who looks after the poorest kids, the ‘least’.”

                                                                          Thinking of those who will reside at “Casa di Giò” the Cooperative made Pope Francis’ words their own: “Let us never forget that true power is service. We need to look after people, each individual, lovingly, especially children, the elderly, those who are the weakest and who are often at the peripheries of our heart.”

                                                                          Hence the choice to turn to young people traumatised by sorrowful experiences, people affected by life, looking for support, accompaniment, someone to be close to them, solidarity so they can build or rebuild their own life project and thus achieve real personal autonomy which extends to where they live and work, and a positive settling into society.

                                                                          This educational approach to work is aimed at establishing a relationship of trust between the young worker and the educator. It is up to the educator to recognise and have others recognise each person’s resources, abilities, knowledge and then plan the path with him to the realisation of such.

                                                                          Residents at “Casa di Giò” will find a family dimension in this educational rapport which becomes a trusted point of reference for the individual, the setting winch welcomes him and for managing daily life.

                                                                          {gallery}Italia - Collegno{/gallery}

                                                                          • Italia
                                                                          • ICP
                                                                          • Giovani a Rischio Sociale
                                                                            Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                            Vatican – “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking”. Focus of the Church and the Salesian world on this “atrocious scourge”

                                                                            4 weeks 2 days ago
                                                                            Vatican – “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking”. Focus of the Church and the Salesian world on this “atrocious scourge”

                                                                            (ANS – Vatican City) – Pope Francis has never hidden his great concern over the phenomenon of human trafficking which claims millions of victims – men women and children. It is a concern not only of the Pope, but of many people within and beyond the Church who are working to counteract what the Holy Father describes as an “atrocious scourge” and a wound “in the body of contemporary humanity”. As part of the long journey of reflection and action that the Church has been conducting on the matter, today “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking” have been released.

                                                                            To address the trafficking and enslavement of human beings, during 2018 Migrants & Refugees (M&R) Section of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development held two consultations with Church leaders, scholars and experienced practitioners and partner organizations working in the field. Participants exchanged experiences and viewpoints, addressing relevant aspects of the phenomenon. The Church’s full response was considered, in terms of strengths, weaknesses, pastoral and political opportunities as well as enhanced coordination worldwide.

                                                                            This six-months process resulted in the present Pastoral Orientations on Human Trafficking, approved by the Holy Father and meant to orient the work of the M&R Section and its partners.

                                                                            The Orientations are for use by Catholic dioceses, parishes and religious congregations, schools and universities, by Catholic and other organizations of civil society and by any groups willing to respond. Besides their implementation in local programs as well as collaboration at a distance, the Orientations also offer key points for homilies, education and media.

                                                                            This 42 page document takes a wide-ranging look at the question of human trafficking, providing both a reading of the phenomenon, its causes and origins, seeking to offer an adequate understanding of its dynamics and developments in order to support the necessary struggle against human trafficking.

                                                                            Human trafficking, a grave crime in itself, is accompanied by other atrocities and violations of human rights, such as slave labour, using child soldiers, sexual violence and exploitation, the commercialisation of human organs…

                                                                            In coping with so many of these crimes, as also in the fight against and prevention of human trafficking, the Salesian Congregation and Salesian family are also very active, with various initiatives at various levels. Just to quote some examples, in the English-speaking West Africa Province (AFW) there is the “Girls Os+” program (where Os means “refuge” in Krio, the local language) run by “Don Bosco Fambul” in Freetown, Sierra Leone, for the recovery of girls who are victims of sexual exploitation; then there is the “Child Protection Centre” at Ashaiman, in Ghana, dedicated to minors whom police have rescued from slave trafficking.

                                                                            Furthermore, The Salesian Mission Procure, “Missioni Don Bosco” in Turin, in collaboration with the Salesian NGO “Volontariato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo” (International Voluntariate for Development, or VIS), has been conducting its “Stop Human Trafficking” campaign since 2015 opposing trafficking and promoting development opportunities in Ghana, Senegal and Ethiopia.

                                                                            Finally, Salesian reflection on the matter has also been carried out at the highest levels of political decision-makers thanks to VIS, who take part in the “EU Anti-trafficking Platform”; and at Don Bosco International (DBI), which is organising an event on this theme in collaboration with COMECE (Commission of the Episcopal Conferences of the European Union). The event will take place 19 February next at the European Parliament, and will involve Fr Jorge Crisafulli, SDB, the Director of Don Bosco Fambul, and a girls rescued from sexual exploitation.

                                                                            Continuing in the spirit of “synodality” which has produced it, this document of “Pastoral Orientations on human trafficking” concludes with a request for comments and further contributions from all interested parties and individuals involved in reflection, and with a prayer that calls on the intercession of St Giuseppina Bakhita, the saintly patron of victims of human trafficking.

                                                                            • Vaticano
                                                                            • Tratta
                                                                            • Missioni
                                                                            • Pastorale Giovanile
                                                                            • VIS
                                                                            • Don Bosco International
                                                                              Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                              Panama – Panama 2019: preparations under way for the grand SYM gathering at the “Valdocco of the Americas”

                                                                              1 month ago
                                                                              Panama – Panama 2019: preparations under way for the grand SYM gathering at the “Valdocco of the Americas”

                                                                              (ANS – Panama City) – The various areas of the Don Bosco Technical Institute have become the focus of much excitement: it is like a human beehive. Each in his or her own way is preparing to welcome more than 800 Salesian pilgrims getting ready to experience World Youth Day 2019.

                                                                              The school will be hosting delegations from the Salesians and Salesian Sisters from Central America, Mexico-Guadalajara, Colombia and Bolivia. Young people from Uruguay, Ecuador, Great Britain, Mexico-Mexico and Angola will be hosted in the days leading up to the beginning of the Day.

                                                                              Around 300 people are at work, in seven commissions, preparing for the World Salesian Youth Movement celebrations (SYM) which will take place on Wednesday 23 January. Three thousand pilgrims are expected at this event which will take on the atmosphere of a genuine oratory, with music, colour, cheerfulness and reflection, and a special meeting with the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, and the Mother General of the Salesian Sisters, Mother Yvonne Reungoat.

                                                                              Young Salesians in formation from the post-novitiate, students of theology and students from the Regional Formation Centre for Salesian Brothers (CRESCO) are helping with the preparation of the logistics at the SYM event and the Salesian Family Pavilion at the vocations fair which will remain open and available to young people from around the world throughout the WYD week.

                                                                              This is an important display area, representing all Congregations who wish to offer an invitation to the young pilgrims. The Salesian Family Pavilion will have Salesians of Don Bosco, the Daughters of the Divine Saviour, the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Salesian Cooperators and Volunteers With Don Bosco available at all times.

                                                                              On the morning of 23 January, those responsible for the Salesian Youth Movement will meet in the Don Bosco Basilica, an authentic Centre of  Salesian Spirituality, the “Valdocco of the Americas”. 170 youth and religious leading Youth Ministry activities in their countries will meet here. In an eminently Salesian atmosphere, they will be able to share in the “SYM Forum”, and thus experience a time of encounter and reflection with Fr Á.F. Artime and Mother Reungoat, who will offer topics of interest to young people today.

                                                                              For those who cannot be physically present at these events, there are still many options for experiencing them. The Salesians in Central America will offer live coverage on their official channels: www.boletinsalesiano.info and Salesianos CS CAM, on YouTube.

                                                                              All SYM pilgrims are also invited to download the app of the Central American Salesian Bulletin before they leave (“Kiosko BS” on the Android platform, “Boletin Salesiano CAM” on the Apple Store), where they can already find and download the text for the SYM festivities vigil.

                                                                              All the information will also be available on ANS and SDB.

                                                                              Official SYM site 

                                                                              Official SYM Feast site

                                                                              {gallery}Panama - GMG - Preparazione{/gallery}

                                                                              • Panama
                                                                              • GMG2019
                                                                              • MGS Movimento Giovanile Salesiano
                                                                              • CAM
                                                                              • Comunicazione Sociale
                                                                                Gian Francesco Romano

                                                                                Vatican – Venerable Mother Anna Kaworek, Co-foundress and first Superior General of the Congregation of Sisters of St Michael the Archangel

                                                                                1 month ago
                                                                                Vatican – Venerable Mother Anna Kaworek, Co-foundress and first Superior General of the Congregation of Sisters of St Michael the Archangel

                                                                                (ANS – Vatican City) – On Tuesday 15 September, upon receiving Cardinal Angelo Becciu, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, the Holy Father, Pope Francis, authorised the Congregation to promote the Decree regarding the heroic virtues of Servant of God Anna Kaworek, Co-foundress and first Superior General of the Congregation of the Sisters of St Michael the Archangel; she was born in Biedrzychowice, Poland, on 18 June 1872 and died in Miejsce Piastowe, Poland, on 30 December 1936.

                                                                                Already in her early years of schooling the seed of a religious vocation had sprouted in young Anna but even if she knew about a number of female religious institutes, she had not yet come to any decision about her future. Only when she was 22 years old, hearing about the religious institutes that was coming into being through the efforts of Blessed Bronislaus Markiewicz, a Salesian at the time, did she answer the divine call.

                                                                                On 25 February 1894 she came to Miejsce Piastowe where she presented herself to the future Blessed, but she was somewhat put off, since what she saw was quite different from any convent she had in mind. After eight months stay there, she asked Fr Markiewicz for permission to return for a visit to her home and to go to the Sanctuary of Mount Sant’Anna.

                                                                                She returned strengthened in her vocation and dedicated herself enthusiastically to the service of the most needy. After 34 of trials and heroic fidelity, on 21 August 1928 the Servant of God, together with a group of the first Sisters, was able to rejoice at the canonical approval of her Congregation which she was immediately elected the Superior General of. She died with a reputation for holiness on 30 December 1936 at Miejsce Piastowe.

                                                                                The Michaelite Sisters, similar to the Fathers, are engaged especially in the education of children and older youth following the spirituality of St John Bosco, of whom Blessed Markiewicz was a spiritual son. The Patron of the Congregation is Saint Michael the Archangel.

                                                                                The Michaelite spirituality has two mottoes: “He who is like God” (Mi-cha-el) and “Temperance and work”. It is a union of the contemplative attitude toward God and pastoral charity for our brothers and sisters which makes this vocation ever relevant.

                                                                                In 2009 the Congregation of the Sisters of St Michael the Archangel became the 26th member group of the Salesian Family.

                                                                                • Vaticano
                                                                                • Suore di San Michele Arcangelo
                                                                                • Famiglia Salesiana
                                                                                • Santità Salesiana
                                                                                • Anna Kaworek
                                                                                  Gian Francesco Romano
                                                                                  ANS - Agenzia Info Salesiana. Periodico plurisettimanale telematico, organo di comunicazione della Congregazione Salesiana