D ear confreres and friends of the Salesian missions!
A cordial greeting in the middle of Lent 2013 during the Year of Faith!
On our journey towards the Passover of the Lord, as we do every year, we make the Stations of the Cross and meditate on the price of our salvation. Every March 24 of the year (the anniversary of the martyrdom of Oscar Romero, Archbishop of San Salvador, El Salvador) we commemorate the Day of Prayer and Fasting in Memory of Missionary Martyrs. The Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples publishes annually a list of pastoral workers killed for the Gospel.
We know that each year, many Christians are persecuted or even lose their lives for their faith in Jesus Christ. At least 100,000 Christians bear witness to Jesus Christ every year: martyrdom in Nigeria, Pakistan and in various countries of North Africa and the Middle East; several violent attacks against Christians in India or in China.
Thanks to the moving testimony of these martyrs we are reminded of the price of our faith.
Could we remember specifically the martyrs of our time this Lent, during the Year of faith? I suggest that we get to know (http:// www.acn-intl.org/pg/home.html) and remember during our Stations of the Cross during Lent this the year of faith!
Fr. Václav Klement, SDB Councillor for the Missions Titolo n otiziario Nome società N. 51 - March 2013 Newsletter for Salesian Missionary Animation A Publication of the Mission Department for the Salesian Communities and Friends of the Salesian Mission Interview with Fr. Filiberto Rodriguez Martin, Provincial of ANG with English subtitles vimeo: https://vimeo.com/59569155 We are mere Workers,, not Master Buiillders The text below was composed by the late Bishop Kenneth Untener of Saginaw, USA as a reflection on the anniversary of the martyrdom of Archbishop Oscar Romero.
Although these words are often attributed to Romero, in fact, they were never spoken by him. This piece, however, also sums up the person of Pope Benedict XVI, “a humble worker in the Lord’s vineyard,” whom we remember with prayerful gratitude .
I t helps now and then to step back and take a long view.
The Kingdom is not only beyond our efforts, it is beyond our vision.
We accomplish in our lifetime only a fraction of the magnificent enterprise that is God's work.
Nothing we do is complete, which is another way of saying that the kingdom always lies beyond us.
No statement says all that could be said.
No prayer fully expresses our faith. No confession brings perfection, no pastoral visit brings wholeness.
No program accomplishes the Church's mission.
No set of goals and objectives include everything.
This is what we are about. We plant the seeds that one day will grow. We water the seeds already planted knowing that they hold future promise.
We lay foundations that will need further development.
We provide yeast that produces effects far beyond our capabilities.
We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realising this.
This enables us to do something, and to do it very well.
It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord's grace to enter and do the rest.
We may never see the end results, but that is the difference between the master builder and the worker.
We are workers, not master builders, ministers, not messiahs.
We are prophets of a future not our own.
Salesian Missionary Intention II am a ffruiit off Projject Affriica … and a giifft to Oceaniia M y family is the root of my missionary vocation. My father and my mother are living examples of charity and faith for me. I remember that as a child I tried my best to memorise the Sunday Gospel so that I would be chosen to act it out before my peers at Sunday School. Back home me and my friends would compete in repeating the prayers we heard at mass until one day my mum found out and strongly forbade us to do this. I obeyed her but I kept the desire to be a priest burning within me. After secondary school I applied and was accepted as a Salesian Aspirant. It was during this period that I decided to share my missionary desire with my spiritual director and my Rector who both encouraged me to pray.
As a young Salesian my missionary vocation developed more concretely when I was sent for an apostolic experience to a refugee camp teaching boys there. One hot day I was tired and I preferred not to join the boys to play even if I was physically present. One of the boys came and sat next to me. After some moments of silence he asked: “Brother, what do you think God has not given you that you seem unhappy?” I could not answer the question, but I turned the question back to him. Suddenly he broke into tears. Later, he shared with me that he was a soldier and this experience was torturing him. When, finally, they had to return to their country the boys invited me to go with them. That experience kept coming back to me. After the summer holidays I shared this experience and my desire with my spiritual director and y Rector who both helped me to discern. Finally I wrote my application and the Rector Major sent me to Papua New Guinea.
“Why go abroad while in Africa we still need missionaries?” many asked me.
Indeed, Africa needs missionaries. But the fact is my Mother-Province has received a lot. Thanks to the sacrifices of the missionaries for Project Africa, the Salesian charism is now flourishing. I believe that it’s now the moment to share its first fruits, even if these are few, and surely God will bless us with many more.
I am truly happy to be sent to the warm and welcoming people Papua New Guinea. It amazes me that so many islands of Oceania await the gift of having missionaries to help them grow in the faith. The beginning was not easy for me.
Food and culture were some of my shocking experiences. How many sleepless nights I’ve had! I am grateful that the Course for New Missionaries in Rome prepared me psychologically to confront cultural shock and to be realistic as to what awaits me. Having a spiritual director also helped me see the new context from a different perspective. May we, missionaries, make the Salesian charism flourish here. Who knows, one day, we may also have Salesian missionaries from Papua New Guinea, perhaps, for Africa !
Cl. Stephen Musya Maswili Kenyan, missionary in Papua New Guinea MISSIONARIES SOUGHT FOR AFRICA Province - Country Necessary languages Environment and necessary qualities of the missionaries AET Ethiopia English, local lan- Vicariate since 2000, very few SDB personnel, large opportunities of first AFC French, local lan- Inaugurated the second century of presence. An area for first evangeliza- MOZ Mozambique Portugese, local languages Vast territory for first evangelization. The province is expanding but more personnel is required They need confreres (Salesian Brothers) prepared for technical and professional schools.
ZMB Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Namibia English, local languages The presence of front line missionaries. The province is expanding, but with out the much needed personnel, for the four countries which are included in the province.
AMERIICA -- SOUTH CONE REGIION,, especiialllly ffor tthe Sallesiians off Braziill That the confreres of the Provinces of Brazil, who are preparing for World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, may render Salesian consecrated life more authentic, visible, credible and fruitful.
The World Youth Day (Rio de Janeiro, 23-28 the July 2013) provides Salesians of Brazil a valuable opportunity for vocations: prepare for WYD by faithfully living the apostolic project of Don Bosco and by bearing witness to the young people involved in the World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro. This makes us more authentic. If you bear witness to the Salesian consecrated vocation with fidelity and joy, our life becomes attractive and fascinating especially to young people which could bring about a new flourishing of vocations.
All six Salesian Provinces of Brazil are involved in various levels in the preparation of WYD 2013.