by Sally Abou Jamra
During the last month of May the winter activities carried out in the houses of the spiritual Sons of Don Bosco were concluded: catechism meetings, activities of sharing and fraternity of the various groups, as well as the community recitation of the rosary as a special tribute to Our Lady in the Marian month.
In the meantime, a formation course for animators - boys and girls aged between 16 and 17 years old - was also organized to prepare them for summer activities, which this year will be developed following the theme "I hear you".
The path developed by the educational community for the six weeks of the summer activities take up the stories of the biblical characters of the Old Testament (Samuel, David, Solomon, Moses, Job and John the Baptist), all united by a common denominator, namely listening and following one's own vocation.
The summer activities follow the guideline indicated by the Rector Major of the Salesians, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, for 2018, so that they deepen the theme of listening and accompaniment, as presented in this year's Strenna, which moves from episode of the encounter of Jesus Christ with the Samaritan woman and of her request: "Lord, give me this water".
At the same time, precisely because the theme of summer activities revolves around the vocation, its individuation, the way in which it is possible to discover it and the response from the Lord, they are in line with the Church's path towards the Synod on "Youth, faith and vocational discernment"; in fact, various ideas have been taken from the Synod's preparatory document.
For the occasion, a booklet was also developed that serves as a support for the activities and includes questions on spirituality and life, educational games, indications for manual workshops, teachings and prayers.
In conclusion: children and youth in Syria today need more than ever the support of Salesian spirituality and of adults who listen to them and accompany them in the slow reconquest of their balance and their relationship with God and society, in a phase of instability and after a seven-year war. And the Salesians intend to stay with them in this process.