Italy – Remembering Fr Bolla, the missionary who said to the Lord: "You will do it all, because now I am all yours"

27 March 2019

(ANS - Schio) - During his recent Animation Visit to the Province of Northeast Italy (INE), the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, participated in a moment of prayer at the Salesian center in Schio, the birthplace of Fr Luigi Bolla, the great Salesian missionary among the natives of the Amazon rainforest. It was a simple celebration, carried out where the Lord first made his summons to the young Luigi, and which had the honor of remembering that the Salesian Family does not proceed through large buildings, but by the presence of Salesians who consume and dedicate themselves to those who are marginalized.

Fr Bolla wrote in his diary every evening. In these writings there are so many of his prayers; more than prayers, they are true conversations with the Lord. In Schio, in the presence of the Rector Major, they prayed remembering the call, mission and the preparation for the death of Fr Bolla using precisely his words.

He wrote in his diaries: “I was 12 when I heard with absolute certainty that the Lord was calling me to be a priest. In August 1944, entering the chapel of the oratory among many rather noisy companions, I heard the voice of Jesus telling me clearly: 'You will be a missionary in the jungle among the natives and you will bring them my Word. You will walk a lot on foot.'

And when he left for the mission, he said to himself: "Lord, I leave my family, my friends, my land, my beautiful mountains, only for you, to make you known to many people who have not yet had the grace to meet you. I put everything in your hands. You will do everything, because now I am all yours."

Fr Bolla founded his missionary experience on three pillars:

  • I do not go among the Achuar as a conqueror ... I do not even intend to have    buildings or colleges ... I want to live like a traveling person, passing from one village to         the next.”
  • I will live simply as a guest, and be satisfied with what the Achuar are able to offer me; allow me to live in all in the Achuar style ... Without losing my identity as a priest and a religious.”
  • I will put all my trust in the Lord's Providence, who will give me what is necessary, since I consecrate myself to building up the kingdom of God.

As a true spiritual Son of Don Bosco, in his last prayers he said: “What great joy the trust in these three points gives me: the Eucharist, Our Lady, the Pope.”

And just before losing consciousness, he conversed with Jesus: “Jesus, I look at your eyes and I love you ... Stay with me, Lord, and with all of us, as it is becoming evening.



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.

This site also uses third-party cookies to improve user experience and for statistical purposes. By scrolling through this page or by clicking on any of its elements, you consent to the use of cookies. To learn more or to opt out, click "Further Information".