Bogotá (Colombia). On 13 May 2022, the FMA of the Provinces of Our Lady of the Snow (CBN) and Our Lady of the Rosary of Chiquinquirá (CBC) of Bogotá, Colombia, celebrated the Eucharist, presided over by the Archbishop of Bogotá Luis José Rueda Aparicio in the Primatial Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception and concelebrated by Salesians of Don Bosco, Paulines, Jesuits, chaplains, and priests close to the educational realities of the FMA, in thanksgiving for the gift of the life of Saint Mary Dominica Mazzarello, for her dedication, and for the Foundation of the FMA Institute on its 150th anniversary.

In preparation for the Eucharistic celebration in honor of the Co-founder, two television programs were broadcast on the Catholic information channel Cristovisión. The first was centered on the history of the Institute and on the work of God in the Founders, St John Bosco and St. Mary Domenico Mazzarello who, with the first FMA, ‘spread the colors’ of this work which is entirely of Mary. They recalled the arrival of the first missionaries, six Italians and one Spaniard:  Sr. Brigida Prandi, Sr. Giuseppina Festa, Sr. Rosario Morillo, Sr. Modesta Ravasso, Sr. Serafina Ossella, Sr. Angiolina Tarrone, and the Novice Sr. Herminia Panini.  After a long and tiring journey of two months, overcoming the difficulties of navigation, first on the ocean and then on the Magdalena river, and finally, after having traveled several kilometers on the back of a mule, they reached the capital on 11 January 1897.

In the second program, the story of these first Daughters of Mary Help of Christians in Colombia was shared. With the patience of a farmer who trusts in a good harvest, they set out in search of land and the means to start sowing immediately. Thanks to them, today, after 125 years of presence in Colombia, they are reaping the fruit which, with the grace of God and the help of Mary, is abundant. In fact, today the FMA are present in 66 Houses in different regions of the country, in the mission carried out together with the laity who, inspired and committed to the Salesian charism, feel called to live this beautiful educational experience.

In the Eucharistic Celebration of May 13, all these moments were remembered and celebrated on the altar, in the presence of the FMA, students and members of the Salesian Family of the educational works of Bogotá.

In his homily, Msgr. Luis José recalled the mission of the FMA to sow good in the hearts of children, young people, and people who love Christ, restoring hope, “Thank God, dear Salesian sisters, because God has chosen you as servants and, through your hands, your words, your gaze, your closeness, the dedication of your whole life, of your youth, through you He is healing the hearts of young people in need of the medicine of tenderness, of friendship with Christ, of closeness. Education is at the service of the healing of consciences, of the heart, of the young in their interiority, in their depths.”

The Provincials of Bogotá, Sr. Cecilia Camacho (CBN) and Sr. Edith Franco (CBC), accompanied this time of celebration and sharing as Salesian Family, an expression of gratitude to God for His work in the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, in the world, and in the Colombian reality.

Photo of the celebration


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.