Philippines – “Don Bosco Home” in Liloan: where you can grow in holiness with others

26 March 2019

(ANS – Liloan) – One of the Salesian Valdoccos around the East Asia-Oceania region is “Don Bosco Home” in Cebu-Liloan. 10 Salesians and about 100 Lay mission partners are committed day and night to the education of young people, especially those who need Don Bosco.

Within not such a large compound, over the last 20 years many important services for youth in need or youth at risk have developed: the Boys Home is a residential care home for youth in need (62 Elementary and High school students); TVET looks after technical and values education for 38 youth; Magone Home, with its After Care Program, offers a new chance to youth in conflict with the law; Don Bosco Youth Center is open to local Liloan Youth, and there's the St. John Bosco Parish (4 Barangay or districts of 15,000 Catholics scattered across 20 mostly mountain chapels – BEC) run by the Salesians.

Indeed for the Novices, “Don Bosco Home” is a weekly apostolic appointment: the basics of consecrated life theology (thanks to the former novice master and DB Home Rector, Fr Ronel Vilbar) and exploring the Salesian Brother vocation (thanks to the presence of 3 Salesian Brothers: Br. Louie, Br. Sylvester and Br. Dondon Gustilo). For any likely candidate, this community is the best way of getting a taste for or confirming the Salesian vocation for poor young people.

But the Salesian community at “Don Bosco Home” is aware that they are not the ones who are saving poor young people: it is the beloved youth who are “saving and nurturing the Salesian vocation”. To be assigned to Liloan is a privilege! The recent 2019 Strenna video shows how the Salesian shares in these terms: “We appreciate the overall invitation for holiness ‘for all’, ‘making us more human’”; “Some Lay people are more holy than the SDB, and are still looking after us; we are humbled!”

The Strenna 2019 message touches the daily life, simple and deep. Some of the students are living a heroic life of holiness, like the Grade 9 girl who is looking after her whole family since both parents are abroad.

“Holiness can’t be achieved alone, we go to heaven together with our young people. Salesian holiness challenges us to love our youth more, be more present among them. The common point of the three stories in the video is ‘service’ and to be connected to the needs of the people around us!,” said Fr Václav Klement, Regional Councillor for East Asia-Oceania.

And he finally concludes: “Yes, we can't go to heaven alone. As Salesians we can only go there with our young people!”

Source: AustraLasia 


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