More than 150 Salesians and FMA sisters in initial formation took part, together with their formatio ...
More than 150 Salesians and FMA sisters in initial formation took part, together with their formation personnel and the organizing team, in the Salesian Social Communication Days at the Salesian Pontifical University on 17-18 April. The meeting was organized by the University in conjunction with the FMA Sectors and the SDB Departments for Social Communication and Formation. The seminar gave some good recommendations regarding work with the family, which is the theme of this year’s Synod.
The SDB and FMA Councillors for Social Communication and the Master of Novices from Genzano and the FMA Novice Mistress, responded to some questions:
Fr Filiberto González, SDB Councillor for Social Communication, responded to the question "Is there any relationship between this year’s theme and last year’s?
In proposing this theme, "Communicating Family: the privileged environment for the encounter of the gift of love," Pope Francis is placing people at the centre of communication, in continuity with the theme he offered last year: "Communication at the service of an authentic culture of encounter". He encourages us to penetrate the deeper reality of communication and get beyond the practice that focuses quickly on the theme of communication in the media, technology, the internet and digital communication, forgetting that the person is the inspiration and the source of all communication. So this year’s message highlights the centrality of the person through the theme of family, which is both paradigm and context for authentic communication.
Fr Raffaele Panno, Master of Novices at Genzano, responded to the question "What is the main challenge of the new culture of communication in the formation of consecrated persons?"
It seems to me that it is the anthropological challenge, but the problem is that we are not very conscious of it. The culture of communication and communications technology is affecting the person and groups, institutions and organizations, and the whole of society, and we are no exception. Our language and behaviour are changing, and our relationships with others, with nature and with God, as well as our way of perceiving and being in the world, our values and our interests, concepts and meanings, among other many things. It is important to bear in mind that our candidates in formation come from this culture.
Sr Antonina Terravecchia, FMA Novice Mistress, underlined:
We experienced the theme proposed by Pope Francis from the moment we arrived at the UPS. We felt the family atmosphere of welcome and sharing immediately. The younger generation is very spontaneous, open and available. It is a great joy to meet again, and to meet new novices. From the topic, and from the time we have spent together, we can see that the family spirit is an essential part of our spirituality.
Sr Maria Helena Moreira, Councillor of the Sector of Social Communication, concluded with a message to the participants:
We thank each of you for coming. Your presence is a sign of true hope, the joy of being in a family that is growing. "Did not our hearts burn while the Lord spoke to us?” So let's go from here with a sincere commitment to take care of our formation as disciples of Jesus, in the culture of communication, always attentive to the journey of others, to the cry and entreaties of young people and young families who are suffering. May none of us lose the family dream, the dream of being a family, living in family communion.
Papua New Guinea - Effective communication brings change
Vatican Radio’s English language Program Director Sean-Patrick Lovett and Signis Services Director ...
Papua New Guinea - Effective communication brings change
Vatican Radio’s English language Program Director Sean-Patrick Lovett and Signis Services Director Fr. Fabrizio Colombo, held a conference on ‘Effective Communication’ for 60 participants on 17 April at Don Bosco Technological Institute, Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.
By Fr. Ariel Macatangay, SDB
The conference was a lively one with creative input that related to the lives of the young. This was followed by a set of interactive exercises and a round of questions from the audience.
Sean-Patrick dwelt on identity, occupation, knowledge, motivation and fears as necessary elements for an effective communicator, while Fr. Fabrizio highlighted identity, network, multimedia, mobility and togetherness as essential factors for a communicator.
The practical activity involved communicating visual symbols to each other. It enabled participants to reflect on themselves as persons and realize their struggle to be effective communicators.
Question time gave the participants an opportunity to ask questions that ranged from ISIS propaganda on social media to the challenge of being effective communicators.
“It takes courage to stand up for change”, said first year DBTI student Sammy Kopi, as he reflected on the statement, 'To change the world, we need to change ourselves'.
Expressing the sentiments of the participants, second year DBTI student Felix Kaltubim said, "It was a wonderful and thoughtful seminar as I learnt a lot from it."
The participants were privileged to have Sean-Patrick and Fr. Fabrizio animate the conference, which has given them a new outlook on life through effective communication.
Representatives of Don Bosco Technological Institute, Boroko, Don Bosco Technical School, Gabutu and Caritas Technical Institute, Boroko attended the conference.
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ITALY: Turin, 14 to 17 May 2015 Meeting of Delegates CS Mediterranean Region
POLAND: Danzig (Gdansk-PLN), 25 to 28 May 2015 Meeting of Delegates CS Europe Center North
PERU: Peru 12-15 Sept 2015 Meeting of SC Delegates of the Interamerican Region
BRAZIL: Brazilia 18-20 Sept 2015, SC Delegates Meeting of the Southern Cone of America
INDIA: 5 to 8 November 2015. Meeting of SC Delegates of South Asia
JAPAN: 9 to 11 November 2015. Meeting of Salesian Publishers of Asia
JAPAN: 12 to 15 November 2015. Meeting of SC Delegates of East Asia & Oceania
Letter from Fr Filiberto
On the 17th and 18th of April, we celebrated the Salesian Social Communication Day at the Faculty of SC - UPS. We were together with Formandi and Formators, SDB and FMA, both sectors of Formation and SC, taking always as a stimulus for reflection, the theme of the World Day of Social Communications. With this experience we open up in a concrete way to the dimensions of the Church, of the Salesian Family and interdisciplinary nature of FMA and SDB Sectors. This year Pope Francis has proposed "Communicating Family: A privileged environment of meeting in the gratuity of love."
Proposing this theme, Pope Francis deepens what he offered to us last year: "Communication at the service of an authentic culture of encounter", and urges us to penetrate the deeper reality of communication, to overcome the idea that quickly focuses the theme of communication in media, in the information technology, in communication, in its use in the networks and in the digital world, easily forgetting the person and the people, who are inspiration and source of all communication, and without which these media has no sense.
From this significant meeting of the SDB and FMA, emerged the awareness that an important point which must be be addressed is the formation to communication of the new generations of young consecrated persons, and the ongoing formation for the formators. Consecrated persons are formed to be communicators and witnesses of God, the Gospel, and therefore the quality of relationships and their communication skills in bearing witness to the Gospel, their life in the community and the development of the mission among the young, are no longer an option, but an important criterion of the Salesian vocation.
I invite you to promote in your Provinces these types of meetings which do a lot of good to the members of the Salesian Family and to the young people, for whom we work. The synergy and collaboration among the Provincial sectors and commissions is always a fundamental criterion for carrying out the Salesian mission in any situation and in any Province.
The members of the Department for SC greet you all and wish you a nice start of the month of May, dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
Cordially in Don Bosco,
Information: RMG - Salesian Bishops to visit the places of Don Bosco
The visit of Salesian Bishops to the places of Don Bosco (Turin, 21-25 May) is one of the major international events of this Year of the Bicentenary. It is now just less than a month away. The Rector Major Emeritus, Fr Pascual Chávez invited them and the invitation was confirmed by the Rector Major Fr Ángel Férnandez Artime. It will be a useful forum for exchange, sharing and enrichment, but also a spiritual and charismatic experience for all the participants.
For the Salesian Cardinals and Bishops who participate, the activities will begin on Thursday 21 May, with the communal recitation of Vespers, the greeting of the Rector Major and a common Marian prayer in the Basilica of Mary Help of Christians.
The next day, early in the morning, the Salesian Bishops will concelebrate the Eucharist in the Cathedral of Turin, before the Holy Shroud, together with Archbishop Nosiglia of Turin. They will hear a meditation by Fr Pierluigi Cameroni, SDB, Postulator for the Causes of Saints of the Salesian Family, on "The Holiness of the Salesian Bishop". This will be followed by a reflection by the Rector Major on the theme of GC27 "Witnesses of evangelical radicalism", which is also the theme of the Bishops’ meeting.
In the afternoon, they will resume with a reflection on the Year of Consecrated Life and the Promotion of Consecrated Life in the Diocese. The day will end with a concert by the Choir of the Sistine Chapel, conducted by Msgr. Massimo Palombella, SDB.
On Saturday 23 May, they well be at Colle Don Bosco and the focus will be on the third nucleus of reflection which is priestly formation in the light of Don Bosco’s Formation in the Seminary in Chieri and the Ecclesiastical College. This will be followed by Mass in the Basilica of Don Bosco at Colle, and, in the evening, the opportunity to participate in the Vigil in the Basilica of Mary Help of Christians.
Sunday 24 May is Pentecost Sunday. After a lectio divina on The Holy Spirit and Mary in the Church, the Salesian Bishops will have another opportunity to concelebrate Mass with Archbishop Nosiglia. In the afternoon they will visit the Salesian places – the Pinardi Chapel, the Church of St. Francis de Sales, Don Bosco's rooms and the Tombs of the Rector Majors. Then the Rector Major will preside at a second Eucharist, which will be followed by the traditional procession of Mary Help of Christians.
The Feast of Mary Help of Christians will be celebrated on Monday 25 May with the Eucharist in the Basilica dedicated to Our Lady. Then the Bishops will study the fourth and final core theme - the life of the Church today, with an analysis of the leadership of Pope Francis – followed by the conclusions and the farewell message of the Rector Major.
Production: India - 66 short films from 20 countries screened at ISFFI 2015
The 9th International Short Film Festival of India (ISFFI), hit the screens of selected city theatres on 25-26th March 2015, unrolling a vibrant selection of short films, documentaries and animations. Out of the 1150 entries that came in for the festival from 66 countries, 66 short films from 20 countries were selected and screened during this two day festival. The Indian entries were from Karnataka, Chennai, Mumbai, Haryana, Andhara Pradesh, Kerala and Kolkata.
This two-day festival, best known for its diverse and cosmopolitan balance of films including various genres like drama, documentaries, animation, comedy, science-fiction and mystery was an initiative of the Don Bosco Institute of Communication Arts (DBICA), Chennai for the benefit of film lovers, media critics, film theorists, film students, and all those associated with film production.
The festival coordinator Fr. Harris Pakkam, who is also the festival director and founder, gave the rationale of this initiative, and expressed his contentment on seeing the 9th edition saying, “What came in a small way has grown so much in these nine years, and I can see a great boom in this genre of short films. They have indeed become a powerful medium of communication, education, empowerment and entertainment”.
The Celebrities and Guests of honour who took part in the inaugural ceremony of ISFFI were Vice Provincial of Chennai Province Fr. Deva Joe SDB, Vice Chairman - DB Institutions, Director SS Stanley, Director M. Perarasu, Director Ram Prakash, Director & Film Critic Cable Shankar, Actor & Director Aruldoss, Cameraman C.J. Rajkumar, Cameraman Deepak and Editor Sabu Joseph.
All the dignitaries gave their views on the role of Short films and the impact it had created in today’s society, specially among the younger generation.
Brian M. Jennings, veteran Hollywood VFX supervisor and editor, in his message expressed his amazement at the high quality animation films that came in for the festival, and remarked that India was making giant leaps in the field of VFX and Animation.
The festival came to a graceful climax with the award ceremony in the presence of a good number of representatives and dignitaries from Media. They were all enthused at the overwhelming response of the film makers and the audience towards short films.
Awards were given under three categories. “Grounded” a short film by Alexis Michelik from France won the first place in the International Category, while “Pere” by Achourlofti from Tunisia and “Eine Gute Geschichte” by Martin Christopher Bode from Germany bagged the second and third place respectively.
Under the National Category, the first place was awarded to the short film “Kadamai” by M. Balasubramaniam from Chennai, while J. Sabarish’s short film “Last Kiss” from Chennai was awarded the second place, and Vidyasagar Gollamudi’s short film “Kurrtha” from Hyderabad was awarded the third place.
There was also a Special Category awards given. The best Animation Film was awarded to “The Street Artist” by Mahmoud Hindwai from Jordan, and the best Documentary short film was awarded to “Not Anymore” by Matthew Van Dyke from USA, and the Audience Choice Awards were given to “Atleast Oru Mutham” by Darshan from Chennai and to “Ahimsa” by Shivaraj from Chennai.
ISFFI 2015 was organised in collaboration with some International Film Festival groups, and had also a dynamic set of academic collaborators from the city such as S.R.M. Sivaji Ganesan Film Institute, Chennai, Don Bosco College of Art & Design, Department of Visual Communications - Sathyabama University, Department of Visual Communications - Madras Christian College, Alpha Group of Institutions, Bridge Academy and SIGA Polytechnic College.
ISFFI continues to remain as Chennai`s unique and biggest short film festival offering an array of visual delight leaving the viewers enthralled, and at the same time educating, entertaining and empowering them.
Production: RMG - The Spread of Good Books in the Bicentenary Year
Faithful to the exhortation of Don Bosco 130 years ago when he recommended to the Salesians " the spreading of good books, for the glory of God and the salvation of souls," the Salesians and Salesian Publishers around the world continue to publish many books of prayer and reflection, as well as educational stories for young people, especially in this Bicentenary Year.
From South Korea comes a new book by Fr Stephen Yang, current Provincial of the Salesians in the country. It is a collection of 34 short essays, published by Biblelife, the publishing company of the Sisters of Charity of Jesus. The book has been published only in Korean, with a title which could be translated as "A good lesson in prayer." It is composed of reflections already published in the last three years by Fr Yang in the monthly magazine "Bible & Life", accompanied by concrete guidelines and practical suggestions.
A small handy volume by Fr Miguel Angel García Morcuende, SDB, of the Department of Salesian Youth Ministry has come recently from the printing press of Narcea Editoriales in Spain. In appearance it is similar to a school exercise book. This small volume presents the main keys to understanding the life and work of Don Bosco, using Don Bosco’s own words. It is divided into four chapters corresponding to the four fundamental elements of the Salesian Oratory – a home that welcomes, a church that evangelizes, a school that prepares young people for life, and a playground where they can meet. The booklet in Spanish concludes with a prayer composed by the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime.
There has been massive participation by Spanish-speaking readers in an initiative of the Salesian publisher "Edebé" called "Con Francisco a mi lado” (With Francis on my side). It is a collection of educational stories for children and educators. It is one of the more personal projects of Pope Francis, launched by Scholas, a company started by Jorge Mario Bergoglio when he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires to promote social and cultural integration in schools and educational networks.
Of the fifteen stories selected from Scholas, tenhave already been published by Edebé in the collection My favourite stories of Blue Train; tales that illustrate values such as joy, courage, hope, self-esteem, solidarity, simplicity, commitment. These stories have had widespread distribution across the country as the collection was distributed with the newspaper El Mundo.
Before reaching Spain in March, the project had been a great success in Argentina and Peru, and it will soon be released in Mexico, Guatemala and Uruguay.
Production: RMG - Don Bosco today: A book interview with the Rector Major
“Romana Editorial” and “Libreria Editrice Vaticana” present the book Don Bosco hoy (Don Bosco today), published on the occasion of the celebrations for the bicentenary of the birth of Don Bosco. The book contains a lengthy interview by the journalist Ángel Expósito with the Rector Major, Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Tenth Successor of Don Bosco. There will be a double launch, tomorrow, 22 April in Madrid, and Friday 24 April in Rome.
"The word 'young' is the one that occurs most often in this book. For the young the Tenth Successor of Don Bosco has the same heart of a father, teacher and friend as our Founder" notes the Salesian Cardinal Óscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga in the preface.
Over the next 12 chapters the Rector Major addresses issues such as immigration, new technologies, international political economy, development and underdevelopment, equality between men and women, religious fundamentalism ... What would Don Bosco do today in the light of all these? The reflections contained in this volume come from applying Don Bosco’s thought to the very complex situations of the world in the 21st century. The aim is to spread knowledge of Don Bosco, his charism and his work which now reaches 132 countries.
Each chapter begins with a series of questions to the Rector Major, and ends with a detailed study done by an expert. Topics range from the life of Don Bosco to the birth of the oratory of Valdocco, from the job training he gave to poor young people at risk to the figure of Mamma Margaret and the Preventive System, from his missionary dream to the role of the laity, from his work as a communicator to his relationship with the young people most in need.
In one of the interviews, Fr A. F. Artime says: "For me, and for us Salesians, all the situations and places where young people meet are important. We must strive always to be present wherever young people are, as Don Bosco did in his time." Later he says that in a world marred by conflicts and wars, "the best path to peace" is "to educate and educate well!"
The volume is enriched by two photographic inserts: one with vintage images of Don Bosco and the Salesian places and the other on the work of the Salesians today.
The Madrid launch will take in the Theatre of the Salesian Institute of Atocha (Ronda de Atocha, 27) this evening at 8.30 local time. In addition to the editor and the Rector Major, speakers will include Archbishop Carlos Osoro Sierra of Madrid; the Salesian Provincial of Madrid, Fr Juan Carlos Pérez Godoy, and Carmen Magallón Dueñas, President of Romana Editorial.
The launch in Rome will take place on Friday at 11.00 a.m. in the Aula Magna of the Augustinianum Patristic Institute in Rome (Via Paolo VI, 25). Together with the editor and Fr Á.F. Artime, there will be the Secretary of the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, Luigi Bobba; Roberto Rusconi, professor of History of Christianity at the University of Rome; and TG2 journalist Enzo Romeo.
The book is published in Italy by LEV, and in Spain by Romana Editorial, and also in several other languages: in Croatia (Verbum Publishing), in France (Parole et Silence), in Germany (Herder), and USA (Paulist).
Preservation: RMG - An Essay on the Salesian house of Essen-Borbeck
A booklet in German by Johannes Wielgoss, SDB, entitled "Das Haus der Salesianer Don Boscos in Essen-Borbeck von der Gründung bis GO II. Vatikanischen Konzil "(The House of the Salesians of Don Bosco in Essen-Borbeck from the foundation up to Vatican II) has just been published by the Salesian University Library (LAS). It is part of the PiccolaBiblioteca series of the Salesian Historical Institute.
The essay on the Salesian house of Essen opens with an account of its foundation in 1921 and the gradual development of the Salesian Oratory located in the west of the city. It was a work commissioned and supported by the Salesian Cooperators who were ideologically close to German social Catholicism. True to the educational principles of Don Bosco, the Salesian community tried to respond to the educative and formative needs of the children and teenagers, and became a reference point for the Church in the area. Its activities extended beyond the boundaries of the city and it became a model for others. The Salesians managed to fuse the idea of the Salesian Oratory with the typical aims of Catholic youth associations in Germany.
On the eve of World War II, because of the strict requirements of the Nazi state, the Salesian youth centre lost its important role.
In addition to the youth centre, the Salesians had opened a school in Essen in 1923 for the promotion of late vocations (known as Sons of Mary), continuing the work begun in Penango, between 1898 and 1900, where German speaking candidates received their formation. From then on the school in Essen was intended for candidates from the north of Germany. But after flourishing for years this institution also had to close in 1940, again on account of the Nazi persecution.
The promising Salesian work was closed by the Gestapo, contrary to law, on 5 August 1941.
Salesian activity resumed in the summer of 1945, in the house damaged by bombing, due to a personal initiative of the first Rector of the post-war period. The situation at the time called for the foundation of a centre to train apprentices. This was followed by the opening of a school. For a long time the events of the war weighed heavily on the life of the community. The leadership of the Province also ordered the reopening of the school for late vocations from the north of Germany.
The work of the youth centre and that of the school went very well. From 1964 onwards the centre opened also in the evening, although the quality of the educational work suffered because of the shortage of premises.
The resumption of the various activities of the apostolate, including the work in the Salesian parish, flourished for a short time, but met great difficulties due to the devastating consequences of Nazism and war. These were overcome only in the years 1963-65. Then followed another delicate period of transformation and change, due among other things to the Second Vatican Council.