(ANS – Freetown) – Three years ago Sierra Leone was mentioned in the media all over the world as the country where people died of Ebola. “The truth – the Spanish daily ‘El Mundo’ wrote – is that Sierra Leone is sinking into oblivion and only a smaller number of NGOs remain in the zone”. While media and international organizations seem to have forgotten, Salesians did not leave any room to oblivion, abandonment and despair. The Salesian Mission Procure of Madrid and the Sons of Don Bosco continue to help and work to secure a future to children and young people.
(ANS - Goma) - Plagued by a guerrilla that has lasted over twenty years, the Northern Kivu region, although being rich in natural resources, is marked by the most extreme poverty, raids and violence. The girls are the first victims of this dramatic situation. They become mothers even before they become adults, not infrequently as a result of an abuse. They are lonely and helpless, slightly older than their children. The Salesians of Goma have opened two structures dedicated especially to them: the “Maison Marguerite” and the “Foyer Annuarite”.
(ANS - Rome) – Just when it seemed that digital piracy meant the end of creativity, new TV platforms led to a new golden era for TV series. Among them, for example, there is "Thirteen reasons why", an adaptation of a book which tells the 13 reasons why American teenagers commit suicide.
(ANS – Trivandrum) – East Fort Junction is one of the main hotspots for migrant workers in Trivandrum. From as early as 5.30 am, large numbers of migrant workers gather here daily, waiting for potential employers who might offer them the day’s work. You can hear hard bargaining for the day’s wages ranging from Rs.550 to Rs. 900. Not every day is lucky for many of them. Thinking of them, Don Bosco Veedu, Trivandrum, set up “Shramik Kalyan Kendr” (SKK), a help desk for the young migrant workers living in Trivandrum.
(ANS - Nairobi) - Killed at the age of 17, from the ruthless shot of a gun that was fired at him even though he was blameless and just happened to be in the wrong company. This is the tragic story of Richard Muiruri, a former street boy who was attending the Salesian Centre "Bosco Boys" in Nairobi and had already embarked on a path of growth and maturity as a man and as a Christian.
(ANS - Bangalore) - "Working on the margins, and especially among street children, helped me stay productive in my missionary life. I learned so much from them." So says Fr George Kollashany, a Salesian of the Bangalore Province in India. Since 1975, he has been working with poor children. With them, he has attended "the best school of life".
Ecuador - In the footsteps of Fr "Yankuam Jintia"
(ANS - Quito) - On May 2, Fr Agustín Togo and the young Salesian Edwin Cárdenas had the opportunity to wander towards the neighboring village of Peru. The goal was to attend the reception ceremony of the remains of Fr Luigi Bolla in the villages of the Achuar indigenous people. The questions arise almost without thinking about them: "what led you to go on the trip? What experiences have you experienced in such a short time? Which message do you have received after having followed the footsteps of Fr Yankuam Jintia?”
The middle class of holiness
During a recent meeting in the Vatican of Salesian novices with Pope Francis, one of the novices asked for a few words about holiness. And the Pope replied: " 'Walk in my presence and be blameless.' This is the best definition of holiness. These are God's words addressed to Abraham. Dominic Savio was in the habit of living in God's presence and, even now, I believe that today we can be saints. There are heroic people, parents, grandparents, young people, hidden saints, or as someone of French origin, said: 'people who belong to the middle class of holiness' that you do not see but they are there."
Philippines – Salesianity Seminar for the East Asia-Oceania region
(ANS - Parañaque City) - A three-week Salesianity seminar was held between April and May in the Philippines, in Parañaque City; it is the first part of a three-year course that will be developed until 2019 under the themes such as History, Pedagogy and Spirituality. The purpose of the course, open to the participants throughout the Salesian region of East Asia-Oceania, was to produce a concrete document to be used to improve the initial training of the Salesians.
RMG – Strenna 2017: “Parents must promote the ethical formation of their children”
(ANS – Rome) – In the Strenna 2017, the Rector Major, Fr. Ángel Fernández Artime, explained that love has various shades and responsibilities, and one of these is strengthening the education of their children. “Parents – the Rector Major insists – always have an influence on the moral growth of their children, for better or for worse. This educative mission of the family is important and complex”.