United States – “Education is a matter of the heart”. The “Don Bosco Prep” experience

25 February 2021
Photo: Jennifer Passerino

(ANS – Ramsey) – “Don Bosco Prep” in Ramsey, NJ, is a Private Catholic College Preparatory High School for Boys. Since it was founded in 1915, it has carried out the education and evangelization of young men through the charism of St. John Bosco. Don Bosco Prep mirrors St. John Bosco, who advocated that “education is a matter of the heart,” and Salesians and their lay collaborators in the Salesian mission strive to create a family spirit in an oratory environment.

Dedicated to empowering young men, the school provides rigorous academics at the Advanced Placement, honors and college prep levels, and encourages participation in extracurricular activities, clubs and athletics. Located on a 35-acre campus in Ramsey, Bergen County, New Jersey, the school's 850 students are accepted to the finest colleges and universities in the country and go on to make significant contributions to their families and communities.

The preventive system of education – marked by reason, religion and kindness – is practiced by educators and students alike.

Today, 12 members of the Salesian Community in residence at “Don Bosco Prep”, along with two Salesians residing in nearby care facilities, mirror St. John Bosco’s pastoral heart and joyful spirituality. They are actively involved in the lives of our students: in the classroom, in the chapels, in the lunch areas, in the auditorium, on the playing field, or – in a word – all around campus. They guide our students, their parents, and our lay colleagues by their example, their leadership, and their prayer. Their active presence is greatly felt.

Looking after the example of St. John Bosco – an exceptional educator, whose preventive system transformed the whole (person  body, heart, mind, and spirit) so as to then send the young forth to transform the world – many of the Don Bosco Prep students became honourable citizens and good Christians and went forth to further their education and then made a difference in an array of vocations, including within the Church.

Over 150 alumni have gone on to serve as diocesan or religious priests or religious brothers. We currently have two alumni in formation for the Salesians and two alumni in formation for dioceses. Countless more alumni have become lay missioners in other countries, or serve in their local parishes in various ministries, including the diaconate.

But it all comes back to reaching the heart. “I think that the way we mostly reflect St. John Bosco is that we are a home that welcomes,” said Burton Oh ’22. “Everyone is always included, especially the new students. No one is ever excluded. And just like St. John Bosco used to do, before the pandemic, when kids would stay late after school to volunteer, the Salesians would invite us into their home for dinner. It is truly a home that welcomes all.”

Further information: https://www.donboscoprep.org/ 

By Jennifer Passerino

Source: Salesians SUE


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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