The current one is the first time that the gathering of the General Council elected by the 28th General Chapter is being held in Valdocco, but it shall certainly not be the last: removations at the "Sacred Heart" in Rome, which houses the Salesian headquarters, are scheduled to last about two years. But if the shift of headquarters was due to a contingent situation, it is also certain that the circumstance offers a further opportunity for spiritual nourishment and recharging at the sources of Don Bosco's Salesianity for the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, and his first collaborators.
Among the principal task to complete on this occasion are the nominations of the Superiors of East Timor (TLS) and India-Panjim (INM), as well as the sharing and careful study of the numerous (13) reports on the Extraordinary Visitations conducted in the past months by the specially appointed Councilors and Visitors.
Specifically, these are the Visits conducted in the constituencies of:
- Italy-Sicily (ISI), by Fr. Juan Carlos Pérez Godoy, Councilor for the Mediterranean Region;
- Middle East (MOR), also by Fr. Pérez Godoy;
- Northern Philippines (FIN), by Fr. Alfred Maravilla, General Councilor for Missions;
- India-Dimapur (IND), by Fr. Biju Michael, councilor for the South Asia Region;
- Brazil-Sao Paulo (BSP), by Fr. Gabriel Romero, councilor for the America South Cone Region;
- Poland-Cracow (PLS), by Fr. Roman Jachimowicz, Councilor for Europe North and Central Region;
- Africa Congo Congo (ACC), by Fr. Alphonse Owoudou, Councilor for the Africa Madagascar Region;
- Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands (PGS), by Fr. Joseph Phuoc, Councilor for the East Asia-Oceania Region;
- Ecuador (ECU), by Fr. Hugo Orozco, Councilor for the Inter-America Region;
- Malta (MLT), by Fr. Ivo, General Councilor for Formation;
- Colombia-Medellin (COM), by Fr. Miguel Angel García Morcuende, General Councilor for Youth Ministry;
- East Africa (AFE), by Fr. Václav Klement, Extraordinary Visitor "ad nutum" and "pro tempore."
- Spain-Mary Help of Christians (SMX), by Fr. Marcelo Farfán, Extraordinary Visitor "ad nutum" and "pro tempore."
Also, the different Sectors of the Congregation are presenting various specific topics for common discussion. The Sector for Formation contributes to the "internal forum" with: "The interview, personal spiritual accompaniment, and admissions: some guidelines and directives"; and, together with the Sector for Youth Ministry, spotlights the care of aspirants; while the Sector for Missions facilitates a discussion on the distribution of funds collected by the Mission Offices and the destinations of new missionaries; the General Economer's Office shall illustrate the final balance sheet or Budget for the year 2021.
Other topics of study concern, the forthcoming Joint Visits in Interamerica and South Asia; the figure of Regional Delegates in their relations with Sectors and Provincials; the reorganization of formation houses in Europe; and the redesigning of Salesian presences in the Balkan area and other parts of Eastern Europe.
Finally, several other important events are also scheduled during the Council's work sessions:
- Wednesday, June 8 through Thursday, June 23: Orientation Course for newly appointed Provincials;
- June 23: Joint Fraternal Meeting with the General Council of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians (FMA);
- June 24: Thanksgiving Feast dedicated to the Rector Major, on the occasion of Don Bosco's saint’s day (Nativity of St. John the Baptist);
- June 26 to July 2: Spiritual Exercises in Annecy (France), in the footsteps of St. Francis de Sales, led by Salesian Fr. Morand Wirth, an excellent connoisseur and popularizer of the Congregation's patron saint, this being the 400th anniversary of his death.