Venezuela – Rector Major: "I'm moved, seeing my Salesian confreres serene, despite difficulties"

12 February 2020

(ANS - Caracas) - The Rector Major's Animation Visit to the "San Luca" Province of Venezuela, which took place from 6 to 11 February, has ended. On the last day of his visit, the Rector Major offered his words to the provincial community. His last message was like what Don Bosco wrote to Miguel Rua: "My thoughts always fly where I have my treasure in Jesus Christ, my dear children."

During the Eucharist with the Directors of the Salesian works in Venezuela he opened his heart to them: "Brothers, these days have been extremely special; I bring a lot of Salesian life with me. I continue to see how God acts through you on behalf of many young people. And I am moved because I see my Salesian confreres serene, upright, even in the midst of this very difficult situation that you are experiencing in your country. You are giving this testimony so it can be seen that we work with God."

During his dialogue with his confreres, Fr Á.F. Artime highlighted various elements that underlie Salesian work in such a difficult context as the present one in Venezuela. "We are living a prophetic moment for our charism." Then he listed  10 elements that must accompany the Salesian work in Venezuela:

1. We are living a providential moment and I invite you to share life with young people and people;
2. Organize a more lively Youth Ministry with open spaces in our presences;
3. Maintain the apostolic ingenuity to fulfill a meaningful proposal of educational; associations, youth prayers, narrate the experiences of missionary voluntary service: this is the way;
4. Young people have their dreams, which is why they need us to accompany them;
5. The difficult times have been fruitful times for vocations, but be careful to maintain the purity of motivations;

6. You have many opportunities in favor of the youth mission, but form young leaders, formed for the common good, also with the dream of being Salesians;
7. You have among you some lay people among you with a Salesian passion that surpass us, continue to form them;
8. Never sit back. Getting stuck in a place or condition is the danger that obscures the meaning of our life;
9. Generous dedication to mission is the way to overcome and learn from trials;
10. Have great trust in God and in our Mother, Mary Help of Christians.

Finally, the 10th Successor of Don Bosco said he was returning to Rome happy because he had met "whole, upright Salesians", "young and courageous dreamers", "lay enthusiasts of the Salesian charism". At the end of the meeting, the new Provincial, Fr Rafael Bernardo Montenegro Latouche, thanked him for coming "like a father, to confirm us in our vocational fidelity."

More photos on ANSFlickr


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