Italy – Transfer of mortal remains of Don Bosco’s Successors to Valdocco

22 November 2017 (ANS – Turin) – The mortal remains of Fr Luigi Ricceri, Fr Egidio Viganò, Fr Juan Edmundo Vecchi – respectively, the sixth, seventh and eighth successors of Don Bosco – arrived in Valdocco on the afternoon of Monday, November 20. Their remains lay in the Salesian cemetery at the Catacombs of San Callisto, Rome, until the morning of Saturday, 18 November, when they started their journey from the capital to Turin; in Turin, a delegation from the Community of Mary Help of Christians arranged for their placement inside the dedicated wing, namely, in the Chapel of the Relics of the Basilica of Mary Help of Christians. The initiative, commenced by Fr Pascual Chávez Villanueva, is still in the process of being completed, and will allow the aforementioned remains to lie near those of Don Bosco, Fr Michele Rua, Fr Filippo Rinaldi, and the other Rector Majors. The meaning of this transfer lies in the desire to collect the Successors of Don Bosco with their founding father in one place; he now lies in the bronze urn at the altar dedicated to him within the Marian shrine in Valdocco, where Don Bosco lived with his first confreres, and where he began his untiring pastoral work with the many children and teens who would come to the Valdocco courtyard. On this site, evocative and holy, the Salesian Congregation had its start in truly concrete terms, and thanks to this transfer, the faithful and pilgrims shall be able to immediately perceive the enormous historical legacy to which each Successor of Don Bosco, and each Salesian, is bound. RELATED ARTICLE(S) Italy –... read more

33rd Thursday in Ordinary Time

  FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD November 23, 2017 33rd Thursday in Ordinary Time   WORD of the DAY As he drew near, he saw the city and wept over it, saying, “If this day you only knew what makes for peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes.   For the days are coming upon you when your enemies will raise a palisade against you; they will encircle you and hem you in on all sides.  They will smash you to the ground and your children within you, and they will not leave one stone upon another within you because you did not recognize the time of your visitation. (Luke 19: 41-44) How shall I live this Word? Today, Luke’s Gospel presents Jesus on His way to Jerusalem where He will soon accomplish the mystery of His passion, death, and resurrection.  As He contemplates the City from a hill, Jesus is moved and begins to cry heavily.  We are upset by Jesus’ crying over His city and it leaves us greatly disturbed.  Why these tears of the God-man?  They represent the extreme prophetic appeal of Jesus to conversion.  This is Jesus’ last visit to His people, a coming that could bring definitive peace and salvation according to the Scriptures and the Prophets.  But in the face of the blindness and obstinate rejection of Jerusalem because its representatives, nothing is left but the warning of doom. This last redaction of Luke’s text could have been influenced also by the historic events of 70 d. c. which culminated in the siege and fall of the city of Jerusalem and of... read more

Italy – Bishop Fagnano: seminar and book dedicated to him

21 November 2017 (ANS – Rome) – Definitely a prominent figure, Msgr Giuseppe Fagnano (Rocchetta Tanaro 1844 – Santiago del Cile 1916), member of the first Salesian Missionary Expedition (1875), the first Salesian director in Patagonia (1880), the first Salesian to land in the Tierra del Fuego (1886), the first and only Apostolic Prefect of Southern Patagonia, the Malvine Islands and the thousands of islands beyond the Magellan Strait (1883). To such a multifaceted character, the Faculty of Theology of the Salesian Pontifical University (UPS) and the Salesian Historical Institute (ISS) devoted an afternoon of study this past November 9. A strong man, an intrepid missionary, a tireless entrepreneur, an ingenious builder, an indefatigable fighter in defense of indigenous rights, and a veritable explorer: how scholars described Msgr Fagnano in their presentations at the seminar. Fr Francesco Motto presented the context and the events that saw Msgr Fagnano as protagonist, while Maria Gabriella Dionisi described him in travel literature. Nicola Bottiglieri illustrated the world of the indios, whom the bishop encountered, through photographs; the evangelizing mission of the church in the correspondence of Msgr Fagnano was presented by Fr Antonio Escudero, while his correspondence with the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians was described by Maria Vanda Penna. What emerged was a full, complex, all-round portrait of a man, with lights and shadows, which the famous anthropologist Fr Juan Bottasso summarized in his address. Msgr Fagnano was also witness and, despite himself, protagonist of the last “tragedy of modernity” when the societies of Chile and Argentina, imitating the United States of America, sought to resolve the “indios problem” with arms or... read more

Vatican – Christmas Concert 2017: for Congolese children and Against Cyberbullying

21 November 2017 (ANS – Vatican City) – The traditional Christmas Concert is celebrating its 25 years this year; for the occasion, it returns to the Vatican with the support and patronage of the Congregation for Catholic Education. This great musical event will benefit two projects: the DON BOSCO IN THE WORLD Foundation, for the liberation of children exploited in the mines of the Democratic Republic of Congo; and the Pontifical Scholas Occurrentes Foundation, against cyberbullying. There is a close link between natural reserves and armed conflict. The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) holds 80% of the world’s coltan reserves and 47% of th world’s cobalt reserves, two of the basic vital minerals for the production of electronic devices. In fact, in the DRC, the conflict related to the extraction of precious minerals has been going on since 1990. Some of the consequences of this conflict have been insecurity, corruption, violence, forced migration, abandonment of traditional activities to the advantage of mining and the illegal traffic of minerals … And, as usual, children pay the highest price. Faced with this reality, the DON BOSCO NEL MONDO Foundation, in collaboration with the Salesians of the Central Africa Province, has launched its project, “Fight against the exploitation of child laborers in the mines of East DRC”, which aims to reduce the presence of minors in the mines of the provinces of North and South Kivu and Katanga. Through this project, approximately 4,000 children are expected to be removed from being exploited in the mines. More specifically, 360 of them, aged 6 to 22, will attend Salesian vocational training centers or redirected to partner schools.... read more

St. Cecilia

  FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD November 22, 2017 33rd Wednesday in Ordinary Time St. Cecilia Virgin and Martyr     WORD of the DAY It also happened that seven brothers with their mother were arrested and tortured with whips and scourges by the king to force them to eat pork in violation of God’s law.  Most admirable and worthy of everlasting remembrance was the mother who, seeing her seven sons perish in a single day, bore it courageously because of her hope in the Lord.  Filled with a noble spirit that stirred her womanly reason with manly emotion, she exhorted each of them in the language of their ancestors with these words: “Son, have pity on me, who carried you in my womb for nine months, nursed you for three years, brought you up, educated and supported you to your present age.  I beg you, child, to look at the heavens and the earth and see all that is in them; then you will know that God did not make them out of existing things.  In the same way humankind came into existence.  Do not be afraid of this executioner, but be worthy of your brothers and accept death, so that in the time of mercy I may receive you again with your brothers.  (2 Maccabees 7: 1, 20-21, 27-29) How shall I live this Word? In today’s first reading, we are the witnesses of the scene of the cruel martyrdom of seven brothers and of their heroic mother.  Here, the protagonist is not the cruel tyrant of that time, but the voice of Israel’s faith which... read more


  FRIENDS and SERVANTS of the WORD November 21, 2017 33rd Tuesday in Ordinary Time PRESENTATION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY WORD of the DAY He came to Jericho and intended to pass through the town.  Now a man there named Zacchaeus, who was a chief tax collector and also a wealthy man, was seeking to see who Jesus was; but he could not see him because of the crowd, for he was short in stature. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus, who was about to pass that way. When he reached the place, Jesus looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down quickly, for today I must stay at your house.” And he came down quickly and received him with joy.  (Luke 19: 1-6) How shall I live this Word? Let’s take a moment to look at the figure of Zacchaeus, a minor person in the Gospel who is not an apostle and not even a disciple of Jesus.  He is a Publican and a sinner who seems to disappear after these few verses.  And yet, he remains a very lively image who attracts the sympathies of all his readers.  Little ones like him because he climbs a tree to hide and see, and adults like him because of his determination and courage.  He has great moral stature that he can no longer forget and thus becomes a model for going to meet Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus sees Zacchaeus in the tree and looks at him.  This is the first element of communication used.  Jesus has divinely deep and... read more

Sr. Mary Winterscheidt’s Obituary on The Record

Sr. Mary Winterscheidt, FMA 1924 – 2017 Sr. Mary Winterscheidt, FMA Sr. Mary Winterscheidt was born on May 19, 1924 in Kansas and died on November 19, 2017 at age 93 at St. Joseph Provincial Center, Haledon, NJ. She was a Salesian Sister for 73 years. She is survived by five siblings, one of whom is Sr. Patricia, also a Salesian Sister. Sr. Mary taught in various places in California, Florida, New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. In Paterson, she taught at St. John’s and St. Anthony’s. Visitation will take place on Monday, November 20, 2017 from 3:00pm – 8:00pm at St. Joseph Provincial Center, 655 Belmont Avenue, Haledon. Rosary at 7:00pm. The Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Tuesday, November 21, 2017 at 4:00pm at St. Joseph Provincial Center. Arrangements entrusted to the Vander Plaat Memorial Home, 113 S Farview Avenue, Paramus, NJ.   Source: Sr. Mary Winterscheidt’s Obituary on The... read more
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