The first thought of Fr Pérez Godoy, until a few days ago Provincial of the Spain-St James Major Province, based in Madrid, is for the Salesians who have died due to COVID-19. “We entrust these brothers of ours and all those who may have died in other Provinces of our region and of the whole Congregation to the Lord, in the hope of the Risen Lord, so that they may already enjoy the promised Paradise with Don Bosco. We also entrust our confreres, relatives and friends who are sick due to this pandemic to our Mother Help of Christians.”
Fr Pérez Godoy then goes on to retrace the experience of the GC28: “I still have in my heart and in my memory, the days lived with young people ... Their presence, their words, their messages, their testimonies, what they asked us - at least for me - it was a new 'Letter from Rome'. It is as if Don Bosco himself sent us these young people on his own initiative to ask us: 'go back to your origins, to your first love; go back to being among us'."
The Mediterranean Region, the cradle of the Congregation, before looking at the challenges, should focus on its great wealth: “Aware also of our weaknesses, let's start from the great potential of our Region: first, the people, all the Salesians, of all ages and conditions, the lay people in love with Don Bosco, the Salesian Family, all united and in the convergence of intentions and synergy of forces working for the education and evangelization of young people ... They are the guarantee of our future,” says Fr Pérez Godoy. Among its peculiar riches, the Salesian dedicates more than a hint to the “immense and inexhaustible wealth of the Salesian holy places”, “a source that radiates spirituality.”
Of course, then, there are also the challenges: “vocational fruitfulness; the revitalization of our Salesian consecrated life; the care of young people, those who are poorest and most at risk of exclusion, with particular attention to immigration; the missionary horizon ...” Without forgetting the great challenge of synergy, to be pursued in various areas: in the field of communication, in formation, in collaboration between the National Youth Ministry Centers.
Finally, the new Councilor for the Mediterranean Region concludes: “I assure you that I will give myself with all my energy to the mission that has been entrusted to me.”