Let us learn to look “with the eyes of God” – RM Letter for March 2019

  Il sito ufficiale dei Salesiani Don Bosco. Storia, vita ed opere del fondatore dei Salesiani. Informazioni sulle attività, i luoghi e le iniziative culturali della comunità. Bollettino Salesiano online. THE MESSAGE OF THE RECTOR MAJOR Don Ángel Fernandez Artime LET US LEARN TO LOOK “WITH THE EYES OF GOD” I listened to the testimonies of dozens of young people during World Youth Day and the wonderful celebration of Don Bosco’s feast day in Panama (with the most multitudinous procession that I’ve ever seen in my life). These young people recounted so many more stories from their lives of how they were looked upon with a “special” gaze – that of the Lord.   Dear Friends, I met wonderful people and marvelous young people at World Youth Day.  Because Pope Francis spoke about Don Bosco and his knowing how to see with God’s eyes during these Days that were broadcast via the internet, they sped around the world in a split second, are still on the Web, and will remain throughout time.   Personally, the story of one young woman’s life touched me deep down in my heart.  She was a young mom, who, due to a grave illness,...

SB 2018-04 – Easter in Palabek – .: SDB.ORG :.

THE MESSAGE OF THE RECTOR MAJOR DON ÁNGEL FERNÁNDEZ ARTIME EASTER IN PALABEK      Don Bosco has arrived in the refugee camp of Palabek, Uganda. This is good news of the RESURRECTION OF THE LORD. Yes, my dear friends! It is true. Don Bosco has arrived in Palabek – through his sons, the Salesians of Don Bosco, the SDBs. I write to you to tell you this so that whoever you may be, you may rejoice over this eminently human news. Without a doubt, those who comprise Don Bosco’s Family and who are living his charism recognize immediately how much this news speaks to them of the Gospel and the Salesian way. It also brings much to those who simply feel close to all that is done for the good of children, teenagers, and young adults through this great “tree” which is Don Bosco’s Salesian Family, composed of 31 different, officially recognized groups spread throughout the world. Living all over northern Uganda are about 1,200,000 refugees, mostly from South Sudan. The first refugees arrived in the camp back in March 2016. It is 77 km/48 miles from Gulu, the largest city of northern Uganda, and 340 km/211 miles from Kampala,...

THE WIDOW’S MITE

12 March 2018 I found a handwritten letter on my desk containing an offering for the poorest of the poor. Dear Readers, Certainly, most of us can call to mind that in one passage of the Gospel, Jesus speaks to us of how great was the value of the little offering that the widow placed in the treasury of the Temple of Jerusalem.  This donation – poor by human standards – was all that she had, however, and so it was very great in God’s eyes. Today I wish to tell you that I have experienced this myself many times.  In fact, the latest occasion took place just yesterday.  I had returned to Rome after having celebrated the intense, beautiful days of the Salesian Family Spirituality Days in Valdocco (Turin), in which 367 persons from 22 of the 31 official groups comprising the Salesian Family took part.  This Salesian Family of Don Bosco is a huge tree with many branches! Upon returning, I found a letter on my desk.  It came from a small town in France.  I am confident that my friend will allow me to speak about this openly, while safeguarding her anonymity, because things that are good...

JESUS IN THE ARMS OF THE HUMBLE AND THE POOR

12 February 2018 Jesus continues to save humanity through our work, our self-giving, our good will. He continues to point out the road to us lest we lose our bearings and our way, and we always assist those who are growing weary, the humblest, the poorest, the least. During the Christmas season I recounted a legend that tells this story: When the shepherds received the news of the birth of Jesus, the Messiah, all of them went to find the child, bringing with them little gifts – the things which they had with them like milk, cottage cheese, honey, etc. Among all these shepherds there was a boy who had nothing to bring to the newborn babe; he came with empty hands, feeling very ashamed and blushing because he couldn’t offer anything. When the shepherds reached the place indicated by the star, they found the baby, Mary his Mother, and Joseph.  Since Mary was holding the newborn babe in her arms, it was difficult for her to receive the gifts they’d brought, to accept them and thank the shepherds for them.  So, the legend continues, she asked the little shepherd boy who had nothing in his hands to hold...

“DON BOSCO TAUGHT US THAT GOD WANTS US ALWAYS TO BE HAPPY”

It is most certain that Don Bosco is alive today, alive in so many different realities where thousands and thousands of people carry his dream forward, in the name of Jesus.  And he is still alive because he continues to be their inspiration. Dearest friends, many things have happened during this past month and a half. (It is the end of November as I write this January greeting to all of you, but I have firmly in mind the month of Don Bosco.)  In October and November, I spent 14 very intense and beautiful days in Brazil – in São Paulo and Recife.  The 11 spent days in India – in Bangalore, Guwahati, Assam, and Mumbai – as well as the 10 days spent in Angola and Mozambique were very special, too. Today in Matola, while we were bidding farewell in a very simple and humble place, celebrating Sunday Mass with 200 adults and children – many of whom were shoeless and not wearing their “Sunday best” because they do not have any – one of them, in the name of everyone, read this “thank you” message that I transcribe below for you.  I found it sweetest when she...

Christmas just like Don Bosco’s 

THE MESSAGE OF THE RECTOR MAJOR DON ÁNGEL FERNÁNDEZ ARTIME          CHRISTMAS JUST LIKE DON BOSCO’S Throughout the entire world, I have seen Salesians who defend children and young people from the many Herods of our day and who continue to dream, guided by the angels, just like Don Bosco.                         Never before had the good citizens of Turin seen such a spectacle as they did in 1842. Along the elegant streets of Turin’s center city, a group of boys were singing a Christmas hymn and a priest was directing them! The music was a bit unsophisticated, but those boys sang it with so much love that it moved all who heard it. Don Bosco had no place to gather the boys to practice the song, so they practiced right in the streets – those streets that the boys knew so well. The hymn had even been written on a windowsill.             Those boys lived their Christmas walking, just like Jesus’ parents when they set out on a journey from Nazareth to Bethlehem. There they experienced what it means to live in a foreign land: there was no room for them in the inn. The doors of the...
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