Happy Feast Day of Saint Francis de Sales!

We join with the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales, as part of the Salesian Family of St. John Bosco, in honoring our mutual Patron Saint! Enjoy reading the Letter of Pope Francis on this gentle yet strong holy man. Dear Friends, The Oblates of St. Francis of de Sales in the United States join with all of our Salesian family in celebrating the feast of our patron, the Gentleman Saint. Celebrating the Feast Day is particularly special this year as we bring to a close our Double Salesian Jubilee Year marking the 400th anniversary of the death of Saint Francis de Sales and the 450th anniversary of the birth of Saint Jane Frances de Chantal. The highlight of the Year was Pope Francis issuing an Apostolic Letter on Saint Francis de Sales. In Totum Amoris Est (“Everything Pertains To Love”), the Pope summarizes the spiritual legacy left to us by Saint Francis de Sales. The Letter includes many of Saint Francis’ teachings and reminds us that these are as relevant today as they were 400 years ago. As a friend of the Oblates, you already know the power and impact of Salesian Spirituality. Through your friendship and support, the Oblates have the humble privilege...

Don Vaclav Klement, SDB, Named Superior of South Africa Vice-Province 2023-2029

Let us keep him and all in his Vice-Province in prayer. We owe him a huge debt of gratitude for constantly keeping us abreast of the publication in English of the Strenna, of the videos of the Spirituality Days, and of so much more. His dedication to growing and strengthening the Salesian Family of the East Asia and Oceania Region has borne much fruit and has helped so many of us in our efforts, as well! God bless him and all in AFM. By our own correspondent Valdocco, Turin, 23 December 2022 — On 22nd December, the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, with the consent of the General Council, appointed Fr Václav KLEMENT as Superior of the Southern Africa: South Africa-Lesotho-Eswatini (AFM) ‘Blessed Michael Rua’ Vice-province for the period of 6 years 2023-2029. The consultation for the new Superior was guided by the Africa-Madagascar Regional Councilor, Fr Alphonse Owoudou. Fr. Václav was born on October 7, 1958 in Brno, Czechoslovakia and started his Salesian consecrated life during the former totalitarian regime, made his first profession in 1982, then left his home country for Italy, crossing the Alps mountains to pursue his second vocation as a missionary ad gentes for...

Validity of Diocesan Inquiry into Cause of Servant of God Vera Grita, Salesian Cooperator

Vatican – 21 December 2022 (ANS – Vatican City) – The Postulator General for the Causes of the Saints of the Salesian Family, Fr. Pierluigi Cameroni, has transmitted to the Bishop of Savona-Noli, Bishop Calogero Marino, and the Coordinator of the Study Center Opera dei Tabernacoli Viventi, dr. Maria Rita Scrimieri, the news that the Dicastery of the Causes of Saints in its Ordinary Congress of Dec. 14, 2022, gave juridical validity to the diocesan inquiry for the Cause of Beatification and Canonization of the Servant of God Vera Grita, Lay, Salesian Cooperator, (1923-1969), which closed in Savona last May 15, 2022. This was following the verification carried out regarding the formal aspects of the procedural Acts and the consistency of the evidentiary apparatus: number and quality of witnesses, and documents collected. The Postulator General, Fr. Cameroni, emphasizes that “this is a great achievement, the fruit of the work done with passion and competence since the day of the presentation of the Supplice Libellus, December 22, 2019, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the death of the Servant of God. Special thanks to the members of the Tribunal and those who have contributed, especially the Historical Commission and the Theological...

Beginning of the Diocesan Inquiry of the Servant of God Akash Bashir

By Fr. Gabriel Cruz SDB        Lahore, Pakistan, 15 March 2022 — The 7th anniversary of the death of the Servant of God Akash Bashir, a past pupil of Don Bosco. The Christian community of Pakistan gathered today in a historic event, the formal beginning of the Diocesan Inquiry for the Cause of Beatification and Canonization of the Servant of God, Akash Bashir, a Past Pupil of Don Bosco. The first Pakistani citizen in the process of Beatification and Canonization. The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in the city of Lahore could not contain the crowd of faithful who gathered for the opening ceremony of the diocesan phase, as well as the solemn Eucharistic celebration. In an atmosphere of immense joy, devotion, and expectation, those present listened attentively to the memory of the death of the Servant of God Akash Bashir, which took place just 7 years ago. The three members of the Tribunal and the Vice-Postulator, Fr. Gabriel Cruz SDB, took the public oath required for this ceremony. The message sent by the World President of the Confederation of Alumni of Don Bosco, Mr. Bryan Magro, was also read. The Eucharistic celebration was presided over by the...

Pakistani Church gets its first ‘Servant of God’

Akash Bashir sacrificed his life while stopping a suicide bomber from entering a church in 2015 Kamran Chaudhry, Lahore Published: February 01, 2022 06:27 AM GMT▾ A poster of Akash Bashir, who stopped a suicide bomber from entering a church. (Photo supplied)   Pakistani Catholics have begun praying for the intercession of a young bombing victim who has been accepted a “Servant of God,” launching the first cause for canonization of a local Catholic. Celebrating the feast of St. John Bosco on Jan. 31, Archbishop Sebastian Shaw of Lahore announced that the Vatican has accepted Akash Bashir a Servant of God, paving the way for the first saint from the Islamic republic. “A great day for the Catholic Church in Pakistan. He offered his life as a sacrifice to save the lives of the Christian community at St. John’s Catholic Church, Youhanabad, Lahore. He is the first Pakistani Christian who has been raised to the rank of the Holy People of God,” said Father Francis Gulzar, vicar general of Lahore Archdiocese, in a notification.      Donate to UCA News with a small contribution of your choice In 2015, Akash, a 20-year-old volunteer, stopped a suicide bomber from entering the church. The attacker — from...