by Fr. Osborn Furtado
ALIRAJPUR-MADHYA PRADESH, OCTOBER 13, 2014: One can truly find a blend of the four aspects of a Salesian Presence: the family, the school, the church and the playground in Don Bosco, Alirajpur. The institute has never failed to do so in the past and more especially during the last ten days as it organized a series of activities varied in its nature but alike in spirit – of course the Salesian Spirit. Only a description of these days could shed better light and prompt clearer understanding of the manner in which, the Salesians in Alirajpur carry the torch passed on by their founder Don Bosco.
Don Bosco Academy organized the Annual Spelling Bee Contest, to begin with the formation of the mind and the intellect. The students had been preparing for this competition for almost a month. It was only after a series of eliminative rounds that the organisers selected forty eight students, who would compete in the finals, which was held on September 29. It had been a tough competition and the institute was proud as two of their boarders won the contest in their respective categories.
The Annual camp of the Don Bosco Scout and Guide of our School was held on September 29-30. This camp focused on training the Scouts and Guides to take active part in the forthcoming Boscoree at Tanjore. Sixty scouts and guides along with their Scout Masters under the direction and the able guidance of Fr. Glen Fernandes pitched their tents in full earnest. The games that followed enabled the scouts and guides to interact and get familiar with scout movement. They felt privileged to have in their midst, Mr. Sandhya Pande one of their senior most teacher's to be the Chief Guest for the evening camp fire. The March Past, Prayer Service, Exhibition and 'The Anthem Presentation' on the theme - 'Heal the World' were the highlights of the event. All in all the camp was a great learning experience and forty Scouts and Guides are enthused about going to Tanjore for Boscoree 2014.
To foster the spiritual development and to provoke a sense of introspection, the Annual Spiritual Retreat was organised from October 3- 5, for the boarders. An allowance was made even for the Catholic day-scholars who wanted to avail of this facility. The two days were spent in a well-animated self-examination and analysis guided by Fr's Charlin Chandran and Jerome John.
A sense of fellowship, fraternity and family spirit was evident when the staff and the boarders celebrated their Community Day immediately after the retreat on October 6. The entire day was a plenteous package, meticulously planned and executed. It was a day of gratitude for the bountiful blessings the Almighty had showered on the community of Alirajpur.
Don Bosco Academy organised a Garba Competition on September 29 and 30 with the aim of promoting and celebrating culture and festivity. This event has been on the annual programme of the school for seven years and is one of the most colourful, dynamic and awaited event of the year. It gathers the entire school to participate in the festive dance regardless of religious differences. The boarders bagged two prizes for their gracious dance moves in the Garba competition.
The Salesian tradition of celebrating the feast of the Guardian Angels was celebrated with a phenomenal blend of art, music and prayer. Don Bosco Academy also organized various inter-house tournaments as they along with the entire Salesian Family commemorate the bicentenary of the birth of Don Bosco. "Surely there would be a smile on his face as he watches from high above his sons making his dream a reality." says a member of the institute.