Turin (Italy). On 20 January 2023, at the “La Finestrella” aggregation center, immersed in the popular towers in the north-western suburbs of Turin, the round table was held to present the book “A dream that has found a home. On the way with Sr. Angela Cardaniedited by Angela Bertero.

During the meeting, the speakers retraced the story of Sr. Angela, FMA of the Piedmontese Province of Mary Help of Christians (IPI) who passed away on 27 October 2019. She gave life to “Vides Main” to share, together with the FMA Community and the volunteers, the life of the people of working-class neighborhoods and bring hope.

“We chose to have her speak first, through an interview that had been carried out at the beginning of the FMA mission in the Vallette neighborhood when Vides Main was just born and from which shines through her ability to imagine a future of good, albeit within a difficult context, and her trust in the resources of young people.

They helped us outline her profile as a woman, as a consecrated woman, as an educator, as an interlocutor of the Institutions, authoritative voices who saw her live and, in different situations, were able to grasp the aspects of her simple but multifaceted personality, capable of not surrendering to the challenges of the times. They uniquely underlined how her intent was not to celebrate the past but to bring out the seeds of the future that Sr. Angela sowed.

Sr. Carmela Busia, Provincial Councilor for Youth Ministry, brought the closeness of the Provincial, Sr. Emma Bergandi, and identified the legacy that Sr. Angela left to the Piedmont Province in her missionary strength and in living the humility of the origins.

After the greeting of the Deputy Mayor of the Municipality of Turin, Dr. Michela Favaro, Sr. Celestina Corna, former Provincial of the IPI Province, in her talk traced Sr. Angela’s faith, which the book defines as granite from childhood, and summarized her life and her work in the binomial faith and mission. She highlighted her relationship of trust with Mother Mazzarello and her loving and competent care towards the Educating Community as well as the young.

From the words of Sr. Piera Cavaglià, General Secretary emeritus of the FMA Institute, emerged her commitment to actualize the Preventive System and the courage to bet on the potential of those adolescents considered to be most at risk who, finding a place in her heart, have become able to “look at the sky above the roofs”. One of them, Debora Spica, now a mother, recounted the experience of loving kindness that Sister Angela’s closeness and guidance gave her and many others, leaving a profound mark on their lives.

Dr. Marco Borgione, former Councilor for the family, health and social policies of the cities of Turin, focused on her candid and decisive relationship with those sectors of the Municipal Administration with a mandate for young people and on fragility, where Sr. Angela did not hesitate to bring the voice of those who were struggling to be heard.

After this roundup, a small space was dedicated to illustrating the reason for the icon of the linden tree, chosen as the leitmotif of the narrative, which developed in the form of dialogue in the pages of the book.

The interludes between one intervention and another were filled with the song “Those who will arrive” which speaks of a child’s dream, to underline how Sr. Angela never neglected to welcome the dreams of children and of the voice of today’s teenagers. Starting from the first Vides Main logo, that depicted “the bench of nothing” which gradually became a stairway to heaven, the young people illustrated the one they had designed to pass a message to their peers. They painted one of the towers in the area, considered by the collective imagination as one of the emblems of hardship, which gradually lights up with light, because those who live there decide to get involved and become an active part of the change.

At the end of this somewhat original Round Table, sharing the buffet, prepared with care by many volunteers, offered the numerous guests, FMA, Postulants,  grandchildren, representatives of the Institutions, young people of yesterday and today, volunteers, friends  the possibility of exchanging memories, bits of life, moments in which dreaming together was fundamental. They underlined once again how today’s Vides Main is the fruit of the courage of Sr. Angela and of the FMA Community that shared everything with her to look at this territory, defined by many as an infamous neighborhood, with Salesian optimism.


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