Communication can be seen from various aspects and for us as Sons of Don Bosco we bring a particular style to social communication. That style and dimension are very much Salesian because our founder Don Bosco had a particular style of communicating with young people. It is a style that incorporates active presence among the young and for us as Salesian educators today, the internet and in particular social media is the new playground or as Fr Chavez put it the "cyber playground of youth."
All the delegates and lay mission partners present expressed their gratitude for this initiative led by the Councillor for Social Communication, Fr Gildasio Mendes. In his opening address of the closing ceremony, Fr Gildasio encouraged the participants to continue the work of animating the school of social communication in their respective provinces and amongst the young people. Most of the delegates expressed how the school enriched their understanding of Salesian social communication, the communion, and connection that they felt with the rest of the region of Africa and Madagascar, how it is also a good step in synodality in communication, and appreciated the quality and content of the various presenters during the school of communication.
Some shared how they hope that this initiative will impact their pastoral work in the area of communication and concretize what they have learned. Most of the delegates also expressed their hopes that there will be more networking and collaboration between the different sectors, especially with Youth Ministry.
The various inputs over the six-month period have given the participants deep insights into the world of communication and especially through Salesian eyes. Don Bosco imitated Christ the storyteller and molded that style into his own unique way of communicating with the young people of his time. Christ remains for us the high standard of communication and each one of us starts from our own experience as a model of Good News to the world and more especially to the young people to whom we are sent.
In his closing remarks, Fr Gildasio expressed his gratitude to the participants for making this school of social communication a success. He expressed thanks to the team that assisted in making it possible, especially Fr Rigobert Fumtchum, regional coordinator for Africa and Madagascar. He pointed out that as a region, Africa and Madagascar “you have great heart, great soul and great vision. Share, listen, and walk together." He also thanked the participants from Haiti province, despite the challenges that they faced.