by Annie Cardoz
MUMBAI, SEP 29, 2017: A one-day meeting in Hindi to help lay coordinators of the Social and Youth at Risk (YaR) ministry understand the Salesian spirit and the style of functioning with youth, in-line with the vision of Don Bosco, the Salesian founding Saint, was held at the Provincial House, Matunga on September 27. Nearly 50 delegates from various parts of the Mumbai province including Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh attended the meeting.
Father Isaac Arackaparambil, the resource person, explained the 'holistic perspective of the ministry of Saint John Bosco'. In addition, he also described the Salesian pedagogy, Salesian spirituality, education and culture, education to faith, vocational guidance and social experience. He amalgamated spirituality with usual works to teach the practicality of application of the values of Saint John Bosco in daily duties.
The next resource person was Father McEnroe Lopes who focused on 'Saint John Bosco and his companions'. He explained the importance of lay persons in the Salesian ministry by emphasising on the first people who helped Don Bosco like his mother, Mr Pinardi among others. Through thought provoking questions he then encapsulated the essence of the audience's own vision for their work and made them ponder on the probable obstacles they might face and how to overcome it.
The third resource person was Father Mayank Parmar from Gujarat. The topic of discussion was 'Lay coordinators responsibility to carry on the works of Saint John Bosco'. He initiated the session with puzzles, pointing out to participants that they often forget there are simple ways of carrying out activities but rather get stuck in complexity. The question, "Do you feel responsible to do your bit?" resonated throughout his talk. He spoke about numerous ways in which YaR centres could collaborate with development centres to further bring about success in their work and help a wider spectrum of the community.
The last speaker of the day was Father Christopher George who spoke about 'Relooking at Saint Don Bosco'. He made the audience brainstorm on how they could merge the values of Don Bosco with their own life and work parallelly. The participants shared many heartwarming stories of how the great Salesian Saint and lay people working together in various Salesian institutions changed their life, which further enabled them to dedicate their own life to the young at risk. Father Gregory D'Almeida and Father Rolvin D'Mello collaborated to organise the event.