Fr. Augustine Baek, SDB – RIP

Fr. Augustine Baek, SDB (1958-2022) went to the Salesian Garden! Rest in Peace: Fr. Augustine Woon Taek Baek, SDB, died at 2:10 p.m. on December 30 at home, the Salesian Provincial Center, in New Rochelle. He was 64 years old and had been a professed Salesian of Don Bosco for 35 years and a priest for 27 years.Widely known as Fr. Gus, he was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2020. The cancer spread in spite of treatment, including several hospitalizations and several forms of chemotherapy. After another Anointing of the Sick by Fr. Provincial on December 26, surrounded by the confreres of the community, Fr. Gus began hospice care.Fr. Gus was very much beloved in the Korean community of the New York metro area, whom he had faithfully served for most of his priestly life, and they attended him tenderly in his last months—as did his Salesian confreres.Woon Taek Baek was born in Kwangju, South Korea, on September 19, 1958. His parents were Nam-Sik Baek and Kwi-Ja Lee. The family was prosperous as owners of a factory that made coal briquettes at a time when every Korean household used them for cooking and heating. The family included two sons...

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...

A motto and a logo on the road to canonization of Artemides Zatti

02 September 2022 (ANS – Rome) – Animating a historic event for the Salesian Congregation and Family, such as the canonization of Artemide Zatti, requires an image and a phrase that are able to accompany on the path of preparation and during the event itself. Thus, on the part of the General Postulation of the Congregation, Fr. Pierluigi Cameroni invited a team of Salesians and lay people, both from Italy and Argentina, to think together about a motto and a logo that would express as clearly as possible the radiant and at the same time simple figure of Artemide Zatti. After several suggestions of possible mottos, the Rector Major, Fr. Ángel Fernández Artime, together with the Postulator General, Fr. Pierluigi Cameroni, presented the canonization motto “I believed, I promised, I was healed”. Almost all of the proposals had as a common basis these three words uttered by the future saint when bearing witness to his miraculous recovery from tuberculosis and, consequently, the origin of his vocation to serve the sick and the poor. They are three verbs that mark a spiritual journey of abandonment into God’s hands and dedication to the good of others. He, who was healed, would now...

Two interesting publications on Fr Albera. His travels in America and Spain

10 January 2022 (ANS – Rome) – In the year dedicated to Father Paolo Albera for the centenary of his death, the Spanish Salesian Fr Jesús-Graciliano González, a member of the Association of Salesian History Scholars (ACSSA), has published the chronicles of Fr Albera’s visit to America from 1900 to 1903, taking up the texts of Fr Calogero Gusmano published in the Salesian Bulletin of the time; and the five trips that Fr Albera made to Spain between 1883 and 1913, again according to the chronicles in the Salesian Bulletin of that time. The Sector for Formation of the Salesian Congregation considers these books – published on Amazon and accessible from anywhere in the world both in paper and digital format – a wonderful contribution to get to know better the second Successor of Don Bosco at the head of the Salesian Congregation. From the pages of the era’s Salesian Bulletin, it is possible to perceive the enthusiasm that the figure of Don Bosco and his work signified during the expansion of the Congregation in America and Spain at the beginning of the 20th century. These two books are a beautiful tribute to Father Albera in the year dedicated to him for...

Fr. Arthur J. Lenti, SDB (1923-2022) – RIP

Salesian Congregation Has Lost a Giant by Fr. Mike Mendl, SDB             Fr. Arthur J. Lenti, SDB, passed from earthly life into eternity early on the morning of January 6. A member of the Salesian community of Bellflower, Calif., he had been hospitalized in nearby Downey.  Fr. Lenti, affectionately known to his confreres as Arthur or Art, died 25 days short of his 99th birthday. He had been a professed Salesian for 81 years and a priest for 71 years.             Arthur was born at Bassignana in the Alessandria province of Piedmont on Jan. 31, 1923.  His parents were Pietro and Maria.  He attended high school in Penango, Italy.             Arthur entered the Salesian novitiate at Colle Don Bosco, the birthplace of our founder, in 1939 and almost immediately was sent to the U.S.  He entered St. Joseph’s Novitiate in Newton, N.J., on August 15, 1939, and made his first profession there on Sept. 14, 1940.  He spent the rest of his Salesian life as a member of the San Francisco Province.             Since it was the practice at the time that the novices took some college courses, Bro. Arthur graduated from Don Bosco College in June 1943 with...