Turin (Italy). At the start the Spirituality Days of the Salesian Family taking place in Turin Valdocco on January 18-21, 2018. There are about 400 participants coming from more than 50 nations from all parts of the world and representing 22 groups of the Salesian Family.
Many volunteers are involved in the organization of the event who, with passion and joy, have prepared the various moments to make the meeting an authentic time of Spirituality for the Salesian Family and the growth of Don Bosco’s charism by studying this year’s theme: the art of listening and accompanying the young. Representing the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians there are Sr. Chiara Cazzuola, Vicar General; the Provincial of Piedmont(IPI), Sr. Elide Degiovanni, many FMA from the various realities of the World, and the Novices from the two International Novitiates of Rome and Castelgandolfo.
Fr. Enrico Stasi, Provincial of Piedmont and of Valle d’Aosta, and Fr. Eusebio Muñoz, Delegate of the Rector Major for the Salesian Family, gave the welcome greetings to all the participants.
Fr. Stasi reminded everyone how Valdocco is not only the home of the Salesians and FMA of Piedmont, but of the entire Salesian Family. “Whoever among the children of Don Bosco must feel upon entering the walls of Valdocco and the walls of the Basilica, like a child returning home”, he said.
Fr. Muñoz highlighted how, from the beginning the Salesian Family is called to live, starting with these spirituality days, the message the Rector Major left in the Strenna: “During these days we can better understand how reciprocal listening among the various groups of the Salesian Family is the secret for living the family spirit and fidelity to the mission of our holy Founder”, he affirmed.
Introducing the event with a contemplative moment through dance, was an invitation to prayer entitled “Lord, give me this water” a dance for Evangelization, presented by the Adonai group.
The word was then given to the Rector Major of the Salesians, Don Ángel Fernández Artime, X Successor of Don Bosco. After expressing the joy of meeting with many friends to share an experience of family and communion, he gave some keys for reading Strenna 2018.
The presentation is preceded by a video of the Strenna. Don Ángel then affirms that the chosen theme profoundly affects the “Salesian heart” and gives renewed vigor to the mission that we are called to carry out with joy and hope every day. The purpose of the Strenna, the Rector Major specifies, “is to put ourselves in full harmony with the journey of the Church that is preparing to celebrate the great event of the XV Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the theme: Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment. The Strenna points out two aspects of vital importance for the world and youth realities in which we are immersed and called to serve: listening and accompaniment.
The Gospel icon of the Samaritan woman who encounters Jesus illuminates these two aspects and helps to penetrate the value of encounter and accompaniment as the path that leads to the transformation of life.
I have met many young people, underlined Fr Ángel, who have a generous heart and wish to serve others, to help, and to give themselves. Young people who ask, sometimes explicitly and sometimes subtly, for help to mature or start a faith journey.
What are we waiting for? Why don’t we decide to be much readier to accompany all our young people in what is most important for their lives? What is holding us back? Why “take care” or “spend time” on other things when this is a real educational and evangelizing priority? These are some of the questions that must challenge us, and which must be seriously considered…”.
The day ended with the presentation of the places of Valdocco, Chieri, and Colle Don Bosco, and of the various SF groups present. At the Goodnight, the Rector Major gave the commitment to share the beauty and the good that is there and is a sign of the vitality and creativity of the Salesian charism.
The event can be followed live on the page Facebook ANS