Bombay (India). From 1 to 11 March 2018, the Mother General of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians is visiting St. Mary D. Mazzarello Province (INB).
On March 1, 2018, at the international airport of Chatrapati Shivaji, a delegation of FMA joyfully waited for Mother Yvonne, accompanied by the Provincial, Sr. Rita Dora Thomas, by Sr. Wilma de Souza, by the Provincial Secretary, Sr. Supriya Noronha, and by the Provincial Economer, Sr. Rita Evelyn D’Souza. Also, many former students of the “Auxilium” Upper Secondary School of Wadala are present to welcome the Mother.
The Provincial placed a beautiful shawl on Mother and offered a bouquet of flowers from the 198 sisters of the Province. At the gates of the Provincial House, the students of the “Auxilium” Upper Secondary School of Pali Hill, dressed in Indian costumes, welcomed Mother according to the traditional Indian style, representing the arathi.
Mother, with her smile and her usual simplicity, conquered the hearts of those present while saying her first words in English, “I am happy to be here in Bombay with you“. She thanked them for the warm welcome offered to her and said she was happy to be in Bombay, since she had long wanted to visit this part of the FMA world in India.
The sisters of the four communities of Bombay then accompanied Mother Yvonne to the Chapel, to thank God for her journey and to entrust these days of grace to God. Together they sang the “Veni Creator”, then Mother lit a candle and she placed it at the feet of the Blessed Virgin Mary, while all of them sang the Ave Maria in Italian. Mother then said: “Today the gaze of the world is fixed on the Province of M. Mazzarello of Bombay and you are in the heart of the world”.
On March 2, Mother Yvonne was welcomed by the Superiors of the Goa-Karnataka Region at the Dabolim airport. They then proceeded to the Convent of St. Francis Xavier, Benaulim, where FMA, students, alumni, collaborators, and members of ADMA welcomed her with flowers, smiles, greetings, and songs.
Together with Mother Yvonne, the sisters went to the Chapel for a well-animated prayer, interspersed with prayers of thanksgiving and a request for the fruitfulness of the visit.
Then Mother thanked everyone for the Salesian vocation, urging us to be a sign of hope for the young and a source of inspiration for all those we meet. The faith we live should be contagious so that many young people can be attracted to the person of Christ.
The Eucharistic celebration was presided by Fr. Avil Rodrigues sdb, the Provincial Vicar of the Province of Konkan and concelebrated by fourteen Salesians.
In the afternoon, Mother went to Auxilium House in Caranzalem, where the students, the sisters, the staff members, and the collaborators greeted her joyfully with their songs. After a time of conviviality, everyone went for the “boat cruise” on the famous Mandovi river to Panjim and then returned to Benaulim to continue the joyful meeting with Mother.
Mother will continue the animation visit in Bombay Province. She will meet the community animators, the FMA, SDB, the groups of the Salesian Family, the students, the youth, and educators, and will visit the different works of the Province. Mother Yvonne will return to Rome on March 11, 2018.