DEI CASTIGHI TO BE INFLUED IN THE SALESIAN HOUSES (1883)
by José Manuel Prellezo 300
I. INTRODUCTION 300
1. Diffusion and significant silences 301
2. The author 304
3. Context and editorial sources 306
4. The original documents 312
5 The present edition 315
THE TEXT 317
SOCIALITY AND PEDAGOGY OF THE PREVENTIVE SYSTEM 334
I. INTRODUCTION 334
Il. TEXTS 337
The «political» choice of education of youth (1883) 337
The «preventive system» in a «History of pedagogy in Italy »(1883) 341
TWO LETTERS FROM ROME - 10 MAY 1884 344
I. INTRODUCTION 344
1. The editor and the inspirer: Fr GB Lemoyne and don Bosco 347
Description of documents 352
3. Editorial events and tradition of texts 357
II. TEXTS 362
1. Ms A, B, C 362
2. Ms K - Letter to the youth of the Turin-Valdocco Oratory 372
3. Ms D - Letter to the Salesians of the Oratory of Turin-Valdocco 377
MEMORIES FROM 1841 TO 1884-5 -6 TO 'ITS SALESIAN CHILDREN
edited by Francesco Motto 391
I. INTRODUCTION 391
1. The manuscript and its editions 395
2. Rules of edition 397
II. TEXT 399
THREE LEI-I ERE A SALESIANI IN AMERICA (1885)
edited by Francesco Motto 439
I. INTRODUCTION 439
II. TEXTS 445
1. To Msgr. Giovanni Cagliero. 445
2. To Don Giacomo Costamagna 448
3: To Father Domenico Tomatis 451
Alphabetical Index of Subjects 453
Alphabetical Index of Personal Names 461
General Index 469
Around the hundred appeals of Don Bosco, both oral and written, are addressed to benefactors, cooperators, past pupils, civil and religious authorities for the support of his works, in Italy and abroad, in the last decade (18771887) of his tireless search for financial aid. They expressed themselves in conferences, speeches, circulars, supplications, periodic letters in the "Salesian Bulletin", which from 1877 became its most qualified and effective spokesman.
Most of them, particularly the public lectures held in the style of the "sermon de charité", follow schemes close to the first discourse, "expo-sé", of which the complete text remained, written, corrected and published personally by Don Bosco. It can be read in the pamphlet of 1877 Inauguration of the Patronage of St. Peter in Nice a Mare, together with the chronicle of the event and the pages of the preventive system, published in full in this volume. The themes of "prevention" return, seen in the twofold fundamental optical, educational and social: the dramatic and dramatized situation of "poor and abandoned" youth; the institutions that take care of it: oratory, patronage, hospice; the urgency of the means of implantation and support through almsgiving; the guarantee of abundant heavenly rewards, temporal and eternal, beyond the affectionate and prayerful gratitude of the beneficiaries; the security of the happy "results", personal, professional, social.
The speech is not new. It is from Don Bosco of the first Turin speakers and lotteries. But it is now more universal and systematic, with the advent of a formula that has dominated the last decade: "society will be good if you give a good education to youth; if you let it bend to evil, society will be perverted ".
At the same time, Don Bosco works within his Congregation to sensitize its members, and the family of cooperators who assist it, to the needs of the preventive system, which has become the typical Salesian way of educating. At the end of the text of the pages of 1877 published in the Italian "Bulletin" of September 1880 (followed by the French one in December 1880 and Castilian in September 1887 and November 1889), the editor-director Don Bonetti wrote: "The above described system, held by he is recommended from the beginning of the Oratory and the Hospice, is that which is studied and still practiced today in all the Salesian Houses; and we know that those that flourish the most and give good fruits, in which the said system is better known and more precisely executed. It would be desirable for it to be introduced in all Christian families, in all public and private educational institutions, male and female. Then we would not be slow to have a more moderate and pious youth; a youth, which would be the consolation of families, and for civil society a valid support "." The Salesians were then given the recommendation registered by the secretary of the general council of Salesian society, Fr Giovanni Battista Lemoyne, under the date of 12 September 1884: "Another thing I recommend. Study and effort to introduce and practice the Preventive System in our homes. The Directors give lectures on this very important topic, the advantages are incalculable for the health of the souls and the glory of God ». 2 The system also becomes an essential point of reference in negotiations and disputes for works already accepted and others under discussion, as in the case of Lyon in September 1879 and Madrid in 1885. In the first, Don Bosco considers certain requests unacceptable, which would create conditions - he affirms - «that overthrows our educational system» .3 In the second we refer to «our system» in the failed negotiations for the assumption of a Madrid work: n «despite all the will to do good, we could not depart in practice from what is laid down in our Regulations, of which I sent a copy in September. ”5 Of the two aspects, educational and social, are the documents collected in this section. Of particular relevance "pedagogical", pastoral, spiritual,
The discourse to the alumni of June 24, 1883 is of clear social significance. However, it also takes on a particular "pedagogical" value for its context. In fact, it presents at the beginning an eloquent testimony of one of the fruits of the "preventive system", that is the implementation of what Don Bosco wrote in the pages of 1877: "The preventive system makes the pupil become attached so that the educator can still speak with the language of the heart both in time of education and after it "; "The pupil will always be a friend of the educator and will gladly remember the direction he has taken, still considering his teachers and other superiors as fathers and brothers".
1 BS 4 (1880) n. 9, September, p. 9.
2 Minutes of the Superior Chapter, 12 Sept. 1884, fol.
3 Lett. to the can C. Guiol, sett. 1879, and III 520.
4 Minutes of the Superior Chapter, 22 Sept. 1885, fol. 80 ' "
5 Lett. Al sen. Silvela, 17 March 1886, E IV 354. In this case, "our Regulation" means the text of the preventive system printed, as we have seen, under the House Rules.
Furthermore, the "glory" of the disciples becomes "the glory of the Master": "If Don Bosco has any name in the world," he said, he does not owe it to his virtues or his talents, but he owes it to success, to good conduct of his children. What I read in the Saints: Gloria patris filius sapiens was fulfilled for me. Continue therefore to be good Christians and wise citizens, and so you will always be my consolation, my joy, my crown. "
The letters to the three Salesians working in Argentina, placed at the end of the collection, represent almost the maximum expressiveness of the "system", not only pedagogical and social, but also general style of relationships and life, the principle of a true spirituality of life religious, personal and community.
6 Discourse to ex-students, laity and priests, who came to Valdocco to offer him the best wishes on the morning of 24 June 1882: BS 6 (1882) n. 7, July, p. 123.
A circular attributed to Don Bosco by José Manuel Prellezo
In the recent Salesian historiography the writ of the chastened has aroused the attention of the most qualified scholars of Don Bosco. For example, Pietro Stella writes: "Among the documents chronologically following the Preventive System, it is worth considering first of all a circular on" Punishments to be inflicted on Salesian houses "composed in 1883". " But it should be noted immediately that, although it bears the date of January 29, 1883, this circular, dedicated to the subject of chastisements, remained unpublished until 1935: almost 50 years after the death of Don Bosco, whose name appears at the bottom of the last page of the copies currently kept in the Salesian Central Archive (ASC) of Rome.
For his part, Don Eugenio Ceria reconstructs the facts in the following way: "Before leaving Don Bosco shortly after leaving the Oratory and Italy, Don Bosco was asked to deliver or send a long letter to the House Directors above a point of capital importance in the application of the preventive system. A beautiful study dated it from the feast of St. Francis de Sales, not only because it was the eve of his departure, but above all because the topic was around a theme aimed at interpreting the spirit of the Salesio in one of the most delicate tasks in the work of an educator. Don Rua had had enough copies prepared. But little by little the text of the exhortation fell into oblivion ».
1 P. STELLA, Don Bosco in the history of Catholic religiosity, vol. II, p. 466.
2 EIV, 201.
3 MB XVI 439-447.
Once published, the paper found the consent of educationalists and educators, especially in the Italian environment. Even non-Salesian scholars, such as prof. Mario Casotti, of the Catholic University of Milan, considered «circular» the circular letter in which «D. Bosco justifies the preventive system with the words and the example of Jesus ".4 Giovanni Modugno cites it to document the need to follow the spirit of the Gospel in the correction of the students; and transcribes abundant paragraphs when referring to the theme of chastisements in Don Bosco's educational thought. " Obviously, the Salesians are the scholars who have devoted most attention to the writing of 1883, emphasizing its value. Thus in 1951 Don Pietro Ricaldone, then Rector Major of the Salesian Society, spoke of the "great circular on the chastisements",
Equally numerous are the quotations that can be found in the first volume of the Annals of the Society of Saint Francis of Sales, in the chapter on the preventive system. The author of the Annals is the aforementioned E. Ceria.7 The complete text of the circular was published in various anthological collections of the Piedmontese educator's writings. Mario Casotti transcribes it in the appendix of the aforementioned volume. It also integrally collects the letter on the punishments Gennaro R. Zitarosa in his work: Thought and method of Giovanni Bosco. ' In the Spanish / Spanish area, Biography y escritos de San Juan Bosco (1955), published by Rodolfo Fierro Torres, was widely distributed.
4 GIOVANNI Bosco (s.), The preventive method. With testimonies and other unpublished educational writings. Introduction and notes by Mario Casotti. Brescia, La Scuola 1942, p. 121.
DON GIOVANNI Bosco, The educational method. Introduction and notes by Giovanni Modugno (= Ancient and Modern Educators). Florence, La Nuova Italia 1941, pp. 50-54; 144-145: "(From a letter of D. Bosco of 1883)".
P. RICALDONE, Don Bosco educator, vol. I. Colle Don Bosco (Asti), Christian Doctrine Library , p. 456. See also Offices of the Society of Saint Francis of Sales. [Rome], Vatican Polyglot Typography 1974, pp. 15-17 ("From the letters of St. John Bosco, priest").
Annali I 664. Cfr. A. AUFFRAY, How a saint punished children. Lyon, Emmanuel Vitte 1946, pp. 27-43.
G.R. ZITAROSA, Pensiero e metodo di Giovanni Bosco. Documentazione ed analisi del «metodo educativo di Don Bosco» come classico della pedagogia per gli esami di Stato e nei concorsi. Roma/Napoli/Città di Castello, Società Editrice Dante Alighieri 1956. (Trascrizione della lettera: pp. 43-59: «La punizione che libera dal male»).
Questi, nel presentare la lettera, aggiunge questa nota: «Come il lettore avvertità, nello scritto si sente un accento di melanconia. Lo compose su richiesta dei suoi figli dell'Argentina, alcuni dei quali si erano lasciati contagiare da un certo militarismo». 9 Ma 1' affermazione non è corredata da una qualche documentazione.
Having completed the second edition of Biografia y escritos, an "obra nueva" was published in the same series, which collects "the principal writings" of Don Bosco. Among them is the circular letter of 1883. '° But the note by Don Rodolfo Fierro on the "Argentine" origin of the writing does not appear.
The most authoritative and widespread anthological collection is, without doubt, that prepared by Pietro Braido, and published in 1965 by the publishing house La Scuola di Brescia. Three years before, the same Braido had collected the text of the circular on the chastisements in the volume The educational system of Don Bosco (1962). In the introductory pages, the Salesian scholar stated: "In our opinion its importance does not lie so much in the presentation of a widespread casuistry on chastisements as in the more general motives and suggestions that inspire it. The spirit, the general educational attitude, the positive evaluation of young people, optimism, the evident predilection for a pedagogical policy of love, are certainly of Don Bosco, and in harmony with his whole method ". n In the "Biblioteca de Autores Cristianos" volume quoted above,
We must recognize that even in other contexts we find, together with enthusiastic judgments and long explicit quotations, certain omissions and silences that may seem, at least, strange. The text of the circular letter attributed to Don Bosco is not found, for example, among the documents reproduced by Don Bartolomeo Fascie in his book on the Preventive System, even if the author presents other testimonies and unpublished writings on educational problems.13
9 R. FIERRO TORRES, Biography and writings of San Juan Bosco. Madrid, Library of Christian Authors 1955, p. 470, n. one.
10 SJ Bosco, Fundamental works. Edited by Juan Canals Pujol and Antonio Martínez Azcona. Introductory study by Pedro Braido. Madrid, BAC 1978, pp. 595-608.
11 P. BRAIDO, Don Bosco's educational system. Turin, SEI 1962, p. 94. The anthology prepared by Braido is this: S. GIOVANNI Bosco, Writings on the Preventive System in Youth Education, Introduction, Presentation and Alphabetical and Systematic Indexes by Pietro Braido. Brescia, La Scuola 1965. The text of the circular: pp. 305-316. It should be noted that «the edition of the Biographical Memoirs, vol. XVI, and of the Epistolary, vol. IV "(p. 277).
12 SJ Bosco, Fundamental works ..., p. 595
13 B. FASCIE, Of the educational method of Don Bosco. Sources and comments. Turin, SEI 1927.
Don Giulio Barberis, first teacher of pedagogy of young Salesians (1874), a close collaborator of Don Bosco and an attentive compiler of his words, dedicates several pages to the topic of chastisements on the notes of sacred pedagogy; he does not however make any reference to the letter of 1883. A rather significant silence, if one still thinks that Barberis makes some paragraphs taken from a book by A. Monfat, translated into Italian, which served as a base as we shall see - for the writing of the paper of which we are dealing.'4 No references were found to Don Bosco's "long letter" even in the writings of one of the first and most authoritative Salesian scholars of pedagogy, Don Francesco Cerruti, author of numerous pedagogical publications and various works that take care of Don Bosco the educator and his thoughts on the education and on the school. ° And this despite the fact that Don Cerruti, then director general of Salesian studies and schools, committed himself, even before the death of Don Bosco, to collect the circular letters of these; as it seems possible to deduce from this fact: on January 14, 1887, responding to Fr Bellamy, a French Salesian, interested in a collection of those writings of the founder, Don Cerruti, while acknowledging the difficulty involved in finding a complete collection, he wrote that he would seek « with all effort "everything that had been possible," as it is - he added - something not only welcome, but highly healthy. "16 Without wanting to give too much weight to the subject of" silence ", I think the facts mentioned require that one first of all, dedicate some space to the problem of authenticity / of the document:
14 G. BARBERIS, Notes on sacred pedagogy exposed to the ascribed to the Pious Society of St. Francis de Sales. Turin, Salesian Lithography 1897. See, for example, pp. 352-354 of these Notes ... and A. MONFAT, The practice of Christian education, the first free version of Sac. Francesco Bricolo. Rome, Typography of the Monaldi Brothers 1879, pp. 158-178; cfr. in particular JM PRELLEZO, Literary sources of the circular "Of punishments to be inflicted in Salesian houses", in "Pedagogical Orientations" 27 (1980) 625-642.
's You can see, for example, F. CERRUTI, D. Bosco's ideas on education and teaching and the current mission of the school. Letters two. S. Benigno Canavese, Typography and Salesian Library, 1886; IDEM, education and education system for school and civil inspections. Turin, Tip. SAID «Good Press» 1910.
16 ASC 272 Cerruti Francesco Correspondence. Charles Bellamy (1852-1911) was the first director of the Salesian house in Oran-Eckmilhl (1891).
The circular letter of 1883 was not even collected in Circular Letters by D. Bosco and D. Rua and other writings to the Salesians. Turin, Tip. Salesian 1896. No reference in F. MACCONO, The pedagogical vocation of Blessed Don Bosco. Rome, Salesian Publishing Library 1930. (The theme of punishment: pp. 67-76).
With regard to this theme it is appropriate to listen to the first publisher again. After mentioning a copy found "at random", Celia adds that she could not find an autograph manuscript of Don Bosco. Nevertheless, for him there is no doubt: "some copy with the characters of Don Berto, the particular secretary of Don Bosco, shows that we have before us an authentic writing of the Saint, as confirmed by the content, style and all the pitch. " Thus writes Celia around the year 1955, in the introductory note preceding the text of the circular on the chastisements, transcribed in volume IV of Don Bosco's epistolary. The volume saw the light in 1959, after the death of the publisher, by Eugenio Valentini. "In 1935, he had simply written:" With the date of January 29, 1883 exists in the archive (32-I) a long circular entitled: Of the punishments to be inflicted on Salesian houses, it is all written by the hand of Fr Rua, including the signature: SAC. JOHN Bosco. We are not aware that it was ever published. ”18 Currently, among the documents kept in the ASC, there is no written copy at the hands of Don Rua, Don Bosco's collaborator and first successor. There is, it is true, a copy that precisely bears the abbreviation: 32-I; but it was written by the hand of Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.19 We will deal with this topic later, when we will examine each of the documents that will be used in this edition. And it will also be seen that it cannot be affirmed with absolute certainty that one of the copies carries the characters of the handwriting of Don Berto. Of the punishments to be inflicted in Salesian houses, it is all written by the hand of Fr Rua, including the signature: SAC. JOHN Bosco. We are not aware that it was ever published. ”18 Currently, among the documents kept in the ASC, there is no written copy at the hands of Don Rua, Don Bosco's collaborator and first successor. There is, it is true, a copy that precisely bears the abbreviation: 32-I; but it was written by the hand of Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.19 We will deal with this topic later, when we will examine each of the documents that will be used in this edition. And it will also be seen that it cannot be affirmed with absolute certainty that one of the copies carries the characters of the handwriting of Don Berto. Of the punishments to be inflicted in Salesian houses, it is all written by the hand of Fr Rua, including the signature: SAC. JOHN Bosco. We are not aware that it was ever published. ”18 Currently, among the documents kept in the ASC, there is no written copy at the hands of Don Rua, Don Bosco's collaborator and first successor. There is, it is true, a copy that precisely bears the abbreviation: 32-I; but it was written by the hand of Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.19 We will deal with this topic later, when we will examine each of the documents that will be used in this edition. And it will also be seen that it cannot be affirmed with absolute certainty that one of the copies carries the characters of the handwriting of Don Berto. We are not aware that it was ever published. ”18 Currently, among the documents kept in the ASC, there is no written copy at the hands of Don Rua, Don Bosco's collaborator and first successor. There is, it is true, a copy that precisely bears the abbreviation: 32-I; but it was written by the hand of Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.19 We will deal with this topic later, when we will examine each of the documents that will be used in this edition. And it will also be seen that it cannot be affirmed with absolute certainty that one of the copies carries the characters of the handwriting of Don Berto. We are not aware that it was ever published. ”18 Currently, among the documents kept in the ASC, there is no written copy at the hands of Don Rua, Don Bosco's collaborator and first successor. There is, it is true, a copy that precisely bears the abbreviation: 32-I; but it was written by the hand of Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.19 We will deal with this topic later, when we will examine each of the documents that will be used in this edition. And it will also be seen that it cannot be affirmed with absolute certainty that one of the copies carries the characters of the handwriting of Don Berto. but it was written by the hand of Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.19 We will deal with this topic later, when we will examine each of the documents that will be used in this edition. And it will also be seen that it cannot be affirmed with absolute certainty that one of the copies carries the characters of the handwriting of Don Berto. but it was written by the hand of Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.19 We will deal with this topic later, when we will examine each of the documents that will be used in this edition. And it will also be seen that it cannot be affirmed with absolute certainty that one of the copies carries the characters of the handwriting of Don Berto.
Ai criteri «esterni», indicati da Celia per documentare l'autenticità della lettera sui castighi, occorre aggiungere i criteri «interni» (contenuti, struttura, stile, tono del documento...). Anch'essi richiedono alcune precisazioni. Infatti, buoni conoscitori degli scritti pedagogici del fondatore della Congregazione Salesiana si esprimono in forma molto più sfumata.
17 «Come abbiamo avuto occasione di dire, presentando il terzo volume, tutta la raccolta è opera del compianto Don Celia, che dedicò ad essa gli ultimi anni e le ultime forze della sua non breve esistenza» (E. VALENTINI, «Presentazione» a E IV, p. V).
18 MB XVI 15. A. Auffray scrive: «Circulaire, dictée un an avant sa mort, à son bras droit, le vénéré Don Rua, circulaire portant cette mention: Des chcltiments à infliger dans les maison salésiennes» (AUFFRAY, Comment, p. 27).
19 Giovanni Battista Francesia (1838-1930). Fu uno dei primi 16 alunni che si unirono a don Bosco per fondare la Società Salesiana (1859). Ordinato sacerdote nel 1862. Fu il primo salesiano che ottenne la laurea in Lettere; autore di numerose pubblicazioni di carattere letterario (lett. italiana e latina). Cfr. E. VALENTINI, Giovanni Battista Francesia scrittore, in «Salesianum» 38 (1976) 127-128; E. VALENTINI - A. RODINO (Edd.), Dizionario biografico dei salesiani. Torino, Ufficio Stampa Salesiana 1969, p. 128.
Pietro Braido ha scritto che «l'orientamento ideale e le formulazioni sono perfettamente conformi allo spirito del 'sistema preventivo'»; ma suggerisce pure che è probabile che la stesura materiale sia stata fatta da uno dei collaboratori; e che «Don Bosco l'abbia semplicemente approvata e fatta sua».2° A conclusioni molto vicine arriva, da parte sua, Pietro Stella: «Il periodare dell'intero documento induce a pensare che il lavoro redazionale altrui sia prevalente. Il che del resto è di consuetudine negli ultimi anni della vita di Don Bosco. Tuttavia è possibile riconoscervi termini e preoccupazioni ch'erano anche di Don Bosco proprio in quel periodo»?' Stella si riferisce, per esempio, ai cenni sul sistema preventivo, all'avvertimento di non correggere mai in pubblico, ma in camera charitatis. E conclude affermando che, a quanto sembra, il documento non fu mai inviato alle case salesiane durante la vita del fondatore, né fu stampato o litografato come si era soliti fare a Valdocco.22 Anni prima, nel 1964, anche Pietro Braido si era riferito al fatto che la lettera circolare del 1883 non fu mai inviata ai destinatari e rimase inedita per molti anni. Egli tratta questo punto esaminando la dottrina di don Bosco sui castighi. In una classica «Buona Notte» ai giovani, nei 1863, lo stesso don Bosco ammonì: «Io, ve lo dico schiettamente, aborrisco i castighi, non mi piace dare un avviso con l'intimare punizioni a chi mancherà: non è il mio sistema»," Dopo aver trascritto queste affermazioni, Braido si domanda: «Non può essere questo il motivo per cui la lunga circolare intitolata Dei castighi da infliggersi nelle case salesiane, esistente nell'archivio capitolare salesiano, datata con il giorno :di S. Francesco 1883, non fu mai inviata ai destinatari e rimase inedita? Pur corrispondendo tutta al pensiero di Don Bosco ed esponendo ordinariamente la sua precettistica e la sua pratica, non sembrava dare troppa importanza ad un argomento che nella pedagogia dell'amorevolezza andava appena sfiorato?»." In una più recente pubblicazione (1981), il noto studioso di don Bosco si occupa di nuovo dell'argomento. Ricorda ancora la «Buona Notte» del 1863.
20 GIOVANNI Bosco, Scritti, p. 277.
21 STELLA, Don Bosco nella storia della religiosità cattolica, vol. II, pp. 466-467.
22 Si possono vedere le circolari di don Bosco e dei membri del Cap. Sup. e altri scritti di carattere ascetico-pedagogico (come, per esempio, i citati Appunti di pedagogia Sacra di G.Barberis o gli Elementi di pedagogia di F. Cerruti).
23 MB VII 503.
24 P. BRAIDO, Il sistema preventivo di don Bosco. Ziirich, PAS-Verlag 1964', p. 179, n. 76.
Then he summarizes and fades, in a meaningful way (now without questions), his previous reflection: "This is probably why the long circular of chastisements to be inflicted on Salesian houses (1883) was never sent to the recipients and remained unpublished. Although in substance corresponding to the thought of Don Bosco, he gave too much importance and systematicity to a topic that in the pedagogy of loving kindness was barely touched "." Without doubt it is a clarifying hypothesis. a certain surprise in the face of the fact that a long circular letter had not been sent to the recipients, if it bore Don Bosco's name as an author: the authority he enjoyed among his first collaborators and children was well known the founder of the Salesians. And it is well known, in particular, that Fr Rua was not one who let the indications or warnings of the Superior fall into oblivion.
In this network of problems and obscure points, the need to approach the environment in which the writing of 1883 was probably composed clearly emerges. This approach can offer, at least in theory, valid elements to clarify the problem of 'extender of the letter and to identify the editorial sources of the document in question.
"This year we will have our dear Father D. Bosco here to cheer up the feast of St. Francis. Deo gratias! But the current 30 will depart for the usual very long and tiring journey. "27
25 P. BRAIDO (Ed.), Experiences of Christian pedagogy in history. Vol. II: Sec. XVII-XIX. Rome, LAS 1981, p. 380.
26 STELLA, Don Bosco in the history of Catholic religiosity, vol. II, p. 467.
27 ASC 9.131 Rua Michele Circolare to the inspectors (25.1.1883) ms allographer and autograph signature of Don Rua; cfr. also ASC 0529 Rua Michele Circolari. Circular letters of the following dates are kept: 26.1.1883; 02/25/1883; 04/28/1883; 05/31/1883; 06/26/1883; 07/24/1883; 24/10/1883; 24/11/1883; 28/12/1883.
In the following months, Fr Rua, among other things, communicated some news on the events of the journey itself from Bordighera to Ventimiglia to Marseille to Paris ... On August 31 he finally wrote to his confreres: «With Divine help he came home healthy and save our dear Father who returned from his long journey of four months ». He then adds that, in a separate sheet, he sends a "beautiful dream of Mr. D. Bosco", which can be made known in public, so that it is edifying and stimulating for the good. Neither in this circular nor in the previous ones (at least those available today in the ASC) does any reference to the writing that should have sent, according to Celia, to the Salesian houses after the departure of Don Bosco from Turin. "On the other hand, not even the chronicles of the
However, we must immediately add that, despite this silence, the information found in the cited documents offer data of unquestionable interest to reconstruct the collegial environment in which the 1883 document is «produced». They reflect tense moments in the progress of the first institute founded by Don Bosco. In the often schematic news, which deals with the interventions of the participants at the various meetings, there is a certain insistence on the urgency for everyone to know and observe their own regulations. And there are allusions and comments on subjects and facts of a disciplinary nature. In the meeting or conference that took place on June 27, 1882, someone said that "young people have no spirit, they are insubordinate." 29 As one of the factors that provoked this situation, members of the Valdocco board of directors indicate the lack of unity in the direction of the center. The topic was the object of reflection and dialogue in subsequent meetings. At the "grand conference" on November 16, all assisting priests, teachers and clerics took part: 35 ca. Some pages of a work by the French pedagogue A. Monfat (Christian Education Practice) were read and commented upon, to which we referred above, in which the subject of "discipline among educators" was addressed precisely.
28 See A. AMADEI, The Servant of God Michael Rua. Vol. I. Turin, SEI 1931. The biographer devotes ample space to recount the events of 1883 (pp. 317-331). It reports the news given by Don Rua in his circulars on Don Bosco's journey. Remember that, at the end of April, "Don Bosco saw the need to have Don Rua at his side, and he called him" (p. 320).
29 ASC 38 Turin San Francesco di Sales fol. 53. See other references in IM PRELLEZO, Fonti, pp. 627-628; IDEM, Valdocco (1866-1888). Organizational problems and ideal tensions in the "conferences" of the first Salesians, in RSS 8 (1989) 289-328; P. BRAIDO, The letter of Don Bosco from Rome of 10 May 1884. Rome, LAS 1984, pp. 81-82.
In the same meeting there was also talk of order among young people: two aspects of the same problem that seriously worried those in charge of the Oratory. It can be affirmed, if we consider that at the beginning of the following year, on 8 March 1883 (while Don Bosco was making his French journey), a new conference took place, in which all those who had some responsibility in the progress of the house. The agenda had a central topic: the discipline. In order to find precise guidelines regarding this delicate matter, a chapter on chastisements was read out from the volume Warnings for the ecclesiastical educators of the youth of Fr. Teppa. "And the words of Don Bosco that refer to the theme in the Regulations were commented on.
The meeting of 8 March ended with a lively exhortation to abide by the spirit of Don Bosco and Fr. Teppa: two "models experienced in the education of youth". And that the topic strongly interested the participants, it is still clear from the very fact that they decide to find themselves again the following day. The central point to be addressed was this: «Finding the why, that young people fear us more than they love us. This is contrary - one observes - to our spirit or at least to the spirit of Don Bosco. "" On this "important subject" there was "about two hours" discussed, but without finding the "true cause". to be able to have a book that serves as a guide and orientation.It was decided to provide each with a copy of the warnings ... of the Barnabite P. Teppa.
If the pages of the Warnings are compared with the text of the circular Of the punishments, we find similar concepts: the punishment, like the medicines, must be applied only for necessity and as last remedy; the educator must never punish hard or move with passion; punishments must not cause damage to health ...
30 A. TEPPA, warnings for the ecclesiastical educators of the youth. Roma / Torino, Marietti 1868, pp. 41-51 (Chapter VI De Castighi).
31 ASC 38 Turin San Francesco di Sales, foll, 78-80. See the critical text of this document in: The Valdocco Oratory in the "Chapter Conferences" (1866-1877). Introduction and critical texts, [by] JM Prellezo, in RSS 10 (1991), 35-71.
But they are fairly common themes in nineteenth-century pedagogical literature. "Instead, the structure and general approach of the two writings are very different. Certain statements then reflect somewhat different points of view: while Teppa advises to punish promptly, even if without precipitation, the author of the circular thinks that the boy should not be chastised at the very moment of the lack, but should have some time to reflect.You can also point out a rather curious fact: the Barnabite educator speaks of inflicting punishments with "loving kindness"; instead, in the writing attributed to Don Bosco this term does not appear so characteristic of his vocabulary, at least in certain periods. " It can be concluded that, as a whole, the traces of the book of P. Teppa in the circular letter Punishments are rather mild. On the contrary, it will be seen that the other libretto used at Valdocco, namely the work of P. Monfat, offered abundant materials to the compiler of the same.
The comparison of the texts presents a solid foundation to support that between these two writings not only exist thematic coincidences and conceptual parallels, but real and real dependencies. In a previous work this conclusion was widely documented; and at the same time the inconsistency of the hypothesis of a direct dependence on the writings of Ch. Rollin was demonstrated. "In the present edition the transcription of the texts will be completed, because even the paragraphs in which the similarities appear more tenuous can be clarifying in the light of the passages reported, almost literally, elsewhere in the writing of 1883.
Through the pedophogist of the Society of Mary, the editor of the circular addressed to the directors of Salesian houses got in touch with the doctrines and writings of other educators and educators: Seneca, Quintilian, Fénelon, Dupanloup, Rollin ... In such cases , one should only speak, of course, of indirect sources. The same should be said of the books and authors added by Bricolo in his Italian translation-adaptation: Lambruschini, Tommaseo, Arrò Carroccio, Alfieri ...
32 Cfr. B. SCHNAPPER, The paternal correction and the movement of ideas in the nineteenth century (1789-1935), in "Revue Historique" 1980, n. 534, 320-349; A. CUMMING, Discipline: An Historical Examination, in "Paedagogica Historica" 9 (1969) 366-379.
33 Andrebbe fatta, a questo riguardo, a preciszione in SJ Bosco, Fundamental works, p. 596, when he says: "All his Oginas emphasize in reiterative form the amorevolezza, typical expression, true technicality in its pedagogical lexicon".
In reality, this "typical expresión" is not found in the circular of the chastisements.
34 In the work cited in note 12 (Sources ...) an attempt was made to document the contribution of the French educationalist Ch. Rollin. This contribution was rather indirect: through the work we know of A. Monfat. In the same work, it was also pointed out that the extensor of the circular Dei castighi did not use the French original but the "free version" of F. Bricolo.
There is a point where the literary source is clearly different: it is the paragraph dedicated to "our dear and meek" Saint Francis, and to his examples of sweetness and charity. The text reproduced reproduces a passage from the Life of St. Francis de Sales, written by André Jean Marie Hamon, a work that was not unknown in the Salesian environment of Valdocco.35 The abundant materials collected were, in general, not very elaborate. The reader can easily realize this by comparing the text and the source apparatus. The author of the 1883 paper comments and illustrates the main pedagogical arguments with references to the Holy Scriptures: example of Jesus (love, gentleness and patience with Mary Magdalene and with the apostles), example of Saint Paul, Moses, David, Elijah ... .
These hints and exhortations to resort to prayer, to the fear of God and to other supernatural means contribute to giving the circular of chastisements a stronger and more characteristic religious-spiritual tone. There are also other elements that contribute to "personalizing" the content. The author speaks more than once, personally, to "my dear Salesians"; he mentions educational and apostolic experiences, familiar in the Oratorian environment of Valdocco: "I have had real conversions"; "The Lord has comforted me several times"; "I have often encountered minds so stubborn [...], and who were only bent by charity"; "Often called to me some of these little rioters, treated with benevolence" ...
These are expressions that would suggest Don Bosco's intervention; but they do not allow us to arrive at certain and definitive conclusions.
The work of research and identification of literary sources clearly shows that the original content of the circular of punishments has very modest proportions. And, after analyzing these sources, some questions remain open around the question of the author of the drafting of 1883 and his intervention in the selection and presentation of the documentation collected.
35 [André Jean Marie HAmoN], Life of Saint Francis of Sales bishop and prince of Geneva compiled on contemporary manuscripts and authors by the curate of St. Sulpice of Paris. Turin, Cav. Pietro Marietti 1877, 3 vol.
The work is preserved in the ancient collection of the Salesian Library of Valdocco. The specimen used (vol. III) bears the old circular stamp: "Oratory of St. Francis of Sales - Turin".
On several pages (also in 356 and 357) the signs made in pencil by an anonymous reader (crosses, vertical and horizontal lines) can be felt.
Nevertheless, one fact appears quite clear: from a new perspective and based on reliable data, the hypothesis is confirmed that in the long letter of 1883 the editorial work of a person other than Don Bosco was prevalent.36 But, even if may seem paradoxical, we must add that the amount of texts taken literally from previous publications does not facilitate the task of identification. The book most used by the compiler was known at Valdocco already in the year 1882. It is sufficient to recall that as many as 35 responsible for the education of the boys took part in the "grand conference" of November 16, and were able to listen to the reading and commentary on some pages of the Practice of Christian education by A. Monfat: a small volume that was, apparently, strongly recommended by Don Bosco himself to his collaborators. In fact, Fr Giulio Barberis, after having drawn abundantly from the Monfatean operetta for the compilation of the Notes of Sacred Pedagogy, in the chapter dedicated to the subject of the discipline, states: "I will say with the illustrious Fr. he strongly recommended reading) "." They are made all but irrelevant with regard to the many affinities between the proposals of the French educator and certain educational orientations that can be found in the first Salesian pedagogical writings. Such facts do not constitute a sufficiently solid basis to be able to affirm that, in fact, Don Bosco put his signature at the bottom of the last page of the summary-extract that of the pages of Monfat surely made one of his collaborators. And, apart from questions of literary dependencies, it does not seem risky to suppose that with the choice and the use of these texts we wanted to respond to particular problems felt in the boarding school of Valdocco in the early 1980s, to which jdui was mentioned in previous pages.
The presentation, which will be made in the following paragraphs, of each of the documents that transmitted the circular letter may offer other useful elements.
36 In summarizing the pages concerning repression, punishment-punishment (pp. 156-193), the editor does not seem to have omitted certain passages based on precise selection criteria. In some cases the changes that can be found in his work could betray a less favorable attitude to punishment. For example, while Monfat says he does not punish "after having exhausted the other means" (p. 157), the circular reads: "after having exhausted all other means" (p. 1). It should be noted, however, that even the French educationalist, at a later stage, invites the educator "not to resort to punishment, but to the last extreme" (p. 169).
One cannot find in the writing attributed to Don Bosco a recommendation that, in the family atmosphere of Valdocco, could perhaps seem too austere: "the word in the educator is always grave" (p. 161). But, on the other hand, it must also be added that some indications and proposals of Monfat (or added by Bricolo in his "free version") have not been collected, which can be considered particularly close to Donboschian educational orientations: condemnation of "general punishments "(P. 177); that the young man knows "to be loved" (p. 158); dealing with "loving kindness" (p. 159). For other elements and reliefs, see PRELLEZO, Sources, pp. 640-642.
31 BARBERIS, Appunti, p. 303.
Of the writing that we are going to publish on these pages, no original autograph of Don Bosco was found. Nor is there any news of the existence, in some historical moment, of the draft or some copy with his signature.
After a systematic consultation of the ASC, Don Bosco Fund, it was possible to verify that there are seven allographical copies (five manuscripts and two typescripts) with the signature 131.03 Circular Letters to the Salesians. In the same ASC there is another typed copy in the position: 0509 Major Circular Superiors 1867-1907.
Only in a few cases was it possible to identify with solid probability the amanuensis who wrote the manuscript. However, we can add with certainty that in none of these eight copies are there interventions attributable in any way to the hand of Don Bosco. Research done in other archives has not yet led to positive results.
In addition to the handwritten copies, the two texts published in the Biographical Memoirs and in Don Bosco's Letters will be kept in the work, for the authoritativeness and diffusion that these editions have had. The first will be indicated, subsequently, with the initials J, the second with the initials K.
The examination of the various known copies leads to a first, albeit provisional, hypothesis: it seems that all these documents derive from a single redaction (perhaps disappeared?) Of the circular letter Dei puniture. All preserved copies contain the substantially complete text. The variants observed (omissions and / or additions of phonemes, change of word order ...) can be attributed to simple copyist's own errors and, in some cases, they can betray difficulties in reading the reproduced manuscript. Only on a few occasions are there variations of a certain importance (omissions of lines) and probable intentional interventions by the amanuensis-publisher to "improve" the text. But even in these cases the substantial integrity of the content is not compromised.
In the present edition a handwritten copy preserved in the place marked ASC 131.03 Circular Letters to the Salesians has been chosen as the basis, which will be indicated from now on with the initials A.
The manuscript A consists of two double sheets inserted one into the other, of a total of 8 unnumbered pages, without scoring and margination, of the dimensions 220 x 140 mm. The last page is white. The paper, now yellowed and almost blackened by time, is light. In the second sheet we read the heading of the letter papers used in the Salesian college of Valsalice: "COLLEGIO-CONVITTO VALSALICE - Turin, on this day".
The manuscript is somewhat worn out by use. There are numerous dark specks, probably due to humidity. The spelling, small, graceful and regular is by Don Giovanni Battista Francesia.38 He also writes the signature: «Giovanni Bosco». Given the type of paper used, it is not risky to suppose that the transcription was made by Fr Francesia when he was director of the college of Valsalice (1883-1884) or in a slightly later period. The manuscript has few corrections; however sometimes it is difficult to specify the word that has been replaced; and often the final vowels (a, e, o) offer a dubious reading. The ink used is brown.
This is the oldest and most authoritative copy. To this conclusion carry a series of considerations that go beyond the characteristics and extrinsic aspects of the document already very eloquent in itself. Copy A was made before the editions edited by Celia. In fact, an archive note says: "It is not published". This copy also carries, written by hand in black ink, the abbreviation: "32-I", which indicated, in an ancient catalog of the ASC, the position in which there were various circular letters of Don Bosco (or attributed to him) to the Salesians.
The systematic presence in the text of A of forms used in the nineteenth century ("had", "era", "whole" instead of "had", "I was", "whole") offers new elements of reliability. Something similar could be said of some Piedmontese-style expressions ("call to relatives" instead of "ask relatives"). All these forms and expressions appear instead "modernized" in the Biographical Memoirs (1935) and in the Epistolario (1959).
On the other hand, the analysis of the text highlights a clear affinity between A and two other handwritten copies of the circular letter.
The first (B) is a common school notebook of 23 unnumbered pages, measuring 201 x 152 mm. The second one (D) is also a school notebook, this time, of 36 numbered pages, of the dimensions 201 x 153 mm. These two copies were made by different scribes; the writing, slightly inclined to the right, is clear, and, in the manuscript B, not without a certain elegance.39
38 In the two-year period 1884-1886 Giovanni Battista Francesia was director of the student section of Valdocco. At the same time he held the position of (provincial) Salesian inspector in Piedmont (1878-1902). See E. VALENTINI - A. RODINd (Edd.), Dictionary, p. 128.
39 Is this the manuscript to which Celia refers when she speaks of a "copy with characters of Don Berto" (E IV, 201)? Among the manuscripts currently preserved in the ASC, the copy B is the one that could seem closer to the "characters of Don Berto". But there were no reliable data to be able to respond positively.
The comparison of variants, while confirming the affinity between the three manuscripts, does not allow one to speak with complete certainty of direct dependence. Indeed, the presence of a significant number of common variants leads to not rejecting the hypothesis that the amanuensis of B and D could have used a transcript for a manuscript different from A. Precisely for this reason, these copies will be kept present in this edition.
Similar considerations must be made regarding the relations between A and J. Don Celia says he has transcribed a copy kept in the Salesian archive with the signature: "32-I". It is precisely the old signature of manuscript A. This fact and the proximity of texts may suggest that J depends on A. The divergences found could be explained by errors in transcription or in simple typographic folds (for example, "curing it", instead of "curving", "wont" instead of "want"). And in some cases, the intentional intervention of the publisher in order to "improve" the text (corrections of some possible oversight of the reproduced original, replacement of antiquated verbal forms) cannot be excluded.
However, these are not considerations that allow definitive conclusions to be drawn. For his part, Don Celia states that he used in his work a copy written by the hand of Don Rua. Instead, copy A was certainly created by Fr Francesia. Without excluding the possibility of an inaccurate attribution of the writing by the historian of Don Bosco, "his testimony constitutes an extra element, which deserves consideration. The data available today therefore leave the question of a true and open its dependence between A and J. The relationship between J and K appears less problematic. The epistolary edition reproduces, with the exception of a few slight tweaks, that of the biographical memoirs.
Two other manuscripts (C, E) preserved in the position indicated by the ASC, are in all probability a transcription of B and D respectively. "Equally two of the typewritten copies (G, H) depend directly on A.
40 There are remarkable similarities between the writings of Don Bosco's two collaborators (Fr Rua and Fr Francesia). These similarities would also explain the inaccuracy that is felt in the Fondo Don Bosco volume. Microschedatura and description by A. Torras. Rome, Central Salesian Archive 1980, in which the copy A like «Ms. Rua "(p. 256).
The spelling of C coincides with that of other documents preserved in the ASC, in which we read this archive note: "writing of the Gerard familiar - worked in the Archive between 1923 and '26" (Cf. ASC 123 Rinaudo).
The copies D, E most probably were made by the amanuensis himself. The spelling of these manuscripts has certain similarities with that of C, and coincides with the writing of copies of realized documents - it is said in the corresponding archival notes - from the aforementioned "Gerard familiar". (See, for example, chronicles by D. Ruffino, ASC 110.1).
The second (H) is kept in position 0509 Major Circular Superiors. A third typewritten copy (F), preserved, as G, in position 131.03 Circular Letters to the Salesians, is very defective: it contains numerous material errors that have not been corrected.
On the basis of the internal analysis of texts, variants and external testimonies, a hypothesis of a coat of arms is presented - also for reasons of clarity and utility for the reader - while recognizing that it offers problematic aspects.
[o] A a a G D H K 5.
The present edition
The critical text presented in this edition of the circular of punishments to be inflicted in Salesian houses faithfully reflects the one transmitted by manuscript A, the document considered the most ancient and authoritative.
To facilitate reading, it was decided to amend some "oversight" probably due to inattention or material error by the copyist. The added elements have been inserted in square brackets. While strictly complying with the transcribed text, it was considered convenient to introduce minor touch-ups in the spelling, preferring, for example, the regular use of small letters in words such as "home", "college". But these are few and slight variations of a formal nature. In other words: the following pages reproduce the critical text presented in a previous publication "The apparatus of variants has been reduced, however, to some essential examples: only those lessons are reported that interest, although not in a relevant way, the meaning of the speech .
42 See the punishments to be inflicted on Salesian houses. A circular letter attributed to Don Bosco. [Introduction and critical text by JM Prellezo, in RSS 5 (1986) 263-308. In this work we can find a broader and more precise description (pp. 274-286) of the Documents that contain the text of the circular attributed to Don Bosco.
For the convenience of the readers, it was preferred instead to reproduce in full a second apparatus that contains: the indication of the literal or paraphrased citations of the Sacred Scriptures and of the authors cited in the text; some «historical-explanatory» notes and references to parallel passages of Don Bosco's writings or of his first biographers, which can help to «contextualize» the writing of 1883. To facilitate reading, direct literary sources are no longer placed in the appendix , but in the corresponding critical apparatus at the foot of the page.
My dear children,
Often and now I get questions from various parts, now also prayers, because I want to give some rules to the Directors, the Prefects and the Masters, who normally serve them in the difficult case in which we should 5 impose some punishment on our homes. You know in what times we live, and how easily a small imprudence could bring with it very serious consequences.
In the desire, therefore, to second your questions, and to avoid to me and you considerable indifference, and, better still, to obtain the greatest possible good in those young people whom Divine Providence will entrust to our care, I send you some precepts and advice, that if you procure, as I hope, to practice, they will help you a great deal in the holy and difficult work of religious, moral and scientific education. 15 In general, the system we must use is the one called preventive (1) which consists in arranging souls in a way
(1) See Rules for the Houses of the Society of St. Francis de Sales.
of our students, who, without any external violence, must submit to our will.
12 will entrust torr ex will grant A
5-8 See, for example, Regulations for elementary education approved by R. Decree [N ° 4336] 15 September 1860, in: Code of classical and technical secondary education and of the primary normal ... Turin, Scholastic Typography of Seb. Franco e Figli and Comp. 1861, p. 389.
16-22 «Different, and I would say the opposite is the Preventive system. It consists in making known the prescriptions and regulations of an Institute and then supervising in such a way that the pupils always have the watchful eye of the Director and of the assistants above them, who, as amorous fathers, speak, serve as a guide to every event, give advice and lovingly correct, which is to say: to put students in the impossibility of committing shortcomings "- Rules for the houses of the Society of St. Francis de Sales. Turin, Salesian Typography 1877, p. 4. See G. Bosco, The Preventive System in Youth Education. Introduction and critical texts by Pietro Braido. Rome, LAS 1985, p. 83.
With this system I intend to tell you that coercive means are never to be used, but always and only those of persuasion and charity.
That if human nature, too inclined to evil, sometimes needs to be constrained by severity, I think it good to offer you some 25 means, which, I hope with the help of God, will lead us to a consoling end. First of all, if we want to show us friends of the true good of our students, and oblige them to do their duty, you must never forget that you represent the parents of this dear youth, who was always the tender object of my occupations, of my studies , and of my 30 priestly ministry, and of our Salesian Congregation. If therefore you are true fathers of your pupils, you must also have your heart; and never come to repression or punishment without reason and without justice; and only in the way of those who adapt to it by force and to fulfill a duty.
35 I intend to explain to you here what the real reasons are, which should induce you to repression, and which are the chastisements to be adopted and by whom to apply.
36 adopt] adapt BD
23-24 "When surveillance is imbelle to contain its evil instincts, it is the duty of the educator to repress them" - A. MONFAT, The practice of Christian education first free version of the Sac. Francesco Bricolo. Rome, Typography of the Brothers Monaldi 1879, p. 156.
27-30 «I promised God that my last breath would be for my poor young people >> - MB XVIII 258.« 11 You know how much I suffered and tolerated for over forty years and how much I suffer and tolerate even now "- The letter of Don Bosco from Rome of 10 May 1884, [edited by] P. BRAIDO, in RSS 3 (1984), p. 341.
31-34 Cf. Bosco, The Preventive System, p. 83. "But now the Superiors are considered as Superiors, and no longer as fathers, brothers and friends" - The letter of Don Bosco from Rome, p. 344.
35-38 «The masters, the teachers, represent the parents, they keep their rights and especially the title of second fathers from the families, who entrust their creatures to them. But if they are the fathers of their students, it is necessary that they also feel it. A father never represses or punishes with pleasure; he resigns himself for reason or justice, but by exercising it he always shows himself to be a father. The dispositions, which an educator, mindful of his title of father brings into the exercise of the Repression are therefore: 1. not to get caught up, that after exhausted the other means of action "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 157.
36-37 "Wherever possible, punishment is never used" - Bosco, The Preventive System, p. 91.
fol. iv How many times, my dear children, in my long career I have had to persuade myself of this great truth! It is certainly easier to be irritated than to persuade: to threaten a child with persuading him: I would say that it is more convenient to our impatience and to our pride, to punish those who resist us, than to correct them by bearing them firmly and with kindness. The charity that I recommend to you is the one that St. Paul used towards the faithful who were freshly converted to the religion of the Lord, and which made him cry, and beg when he saw them less docile and corresponding to his zeal.
Therefore I recommend to all the Directors, that first they must use the paternal correction towards our dear children, and that this be done in private, or as they say in camera charitatis. In public 50 you never scold yourself directly, if it were not to prevent the scandal, or to repair it if it was already given.
If after the first warning you see no profit, you talk about it with another superior who has some influence over the offender; and then in the end we talk about it with the Lord. I would like the Salesian 55 to be always like Moses, who is studying to appease the Lord rightly outraged against his people of Israel. I have seen that a sudden and given punishment rarely benefits without having first sought other means.
40-44 "And being wary is easier to be irritated than to be patient; it is more petty to threaten a child than to persuade him; it is more convenient to human pride and impatience to beat on those who resist, than to bear them by correcting them firmly and kindly "- MONFAT, Practice, p. 159.
44-47 Cf. 1 Cor 1:10; Gal 4,15-20; Phil. 2,1-5.
48-52 "To correct with fruit do not reproach in the presence of others" - Memoirs from 1841 to 1884-5-6 for Sac. Gio. Bosco to his Salesian sons [Spiritual Testament], [edited by] F. Motto in RSS 4 (1985), p. 92. "The Director [...] Never reproaches, nor give severe warnings in the presence of others. But make sure of this always doing in camera caritatis, that is, sweetly, strictly in private "(ibid., Pp. 115-116). "Except for very rare cases, the corrections, the punishments are never given in public, but privately, far from the companions" - Bosco, The Preventive System, p. 91.
49-50 "Should they be blamed, give warnings or corrections, never be present in the presence of their companions" - Regulations for houses, p. 17. "Let it be called in particular and in a paternal tone" - MONFAT, The practice, p. 184.
56-57 Cfr. Ex 32,11-14.
59-68 "It is precisely because nothing can force the impenetrable trench of the freedom of a heart, which must do everything to gain that heart, its esteem, and its affection. A sweet and wise, constant and amiable firmness can only deal with it. Here is the moral discipline. But it must be confessed, this is a perfection, which is rarely encountered, especially in the young masters, even pious ones: most do not correct, as one should, do not take the children, as it would be appropriate to take them; they do nothing but punish materially and do nothing; let it all go, or hit rightly and wrongly "- MONFAT, La praticata, pp. 159-160.
No thing, says St. Gregory, can force a heart, which is like an impregnable citadel, and which makes it necessary to earn with affection and sweetness. Be firm in wanting good, and preventing evil, but always sweet and prudent; then be persevering and loving, and you will see that God will make you masters even of the less docile heart. I know, this is perfection, which one encounters not so much as among the teachers and assistants, often still youngsters. They do not usually take children, as it would be appropriate to take them: they would do nothing but punish materially, and they succeed in nothing, or let everything go badly, or strike wrongly and rightly.
It is for this reason that we often see evil spreading, discontent spreading even in those who are the best, and that the corrector is rendered impotent to any good. I therefore also have to bring you my own experience again, for example. I have often encountered such obstinate souls, so reluctant to any good insinuation, that they no longer left me any hope of health, and that by now he saw the need to take severe measures for them, and that they were bent only by charity. Sometimes it seems to us that that child does not benefit from our correction, while in his heart he feels an excellent disposition to follow us, and that we would send to evil, with a misunderstood rigor, and with the expectation that the guilty face should have been suffered and seriously amended. of his phallus. I will tell you first of all that he perhaps does not believe he has so much demerit with that lack, which he committed more out of lightness than out of malice. Often called to me some of these little rioters, treated with benevolence, and requested because they showed themselves to be so indocile, I had in response, that they did it because they were targeted, as they say, or persecuted by this or that superior .
65 youngsters] young J 66s wont] want J 76 to us] mi D 85 face vain] was A
80-83 "Let us not hurry to take it too far: it could believe, to be hated and persecuted. The habit in fact of these faults makes, that a light young man commits them almost without his knowledge, the too frequent reproaches do not breach »MONFAT, The practice, pp. 184-185.
81-83 "The most essential reason is youth mobility, which in a moment forgets the disciplinary rules, the punishments that they threaten; therefore often a child becomes guilty and deserving of a punishment, to which he has not paid attention, which nothing at all remembered in the act of the phallus committed and which would certainly have avoided if a friendly voice 1 had admonished "- Bosco, The preventive system , p. 83.
Then, informing me of the state of things calmly and without concern, he had to convince me that the guilt diminished greatly, and sometimes he disappeared almost entirely. For this reason I have to say it with some pain that, due to the small submission of these, we ourselves were always at fault. I saw that often those who demanded from their students silence, punishment, exactness and prompt and blind obedience, were even those who violated the healthy warnings that I and other superiors had to do; and I had to convince myself that fol. 2r the masters who forgive the pupils nothing, then usually forgive themselves to themselves. Therefore, if we want to know how to command, let us look at knowing how to obey first; and let's try to make ourselves loved rather than fear. When repression is necessary, and the system must change; since it is certain nature that it is force to tame with rigor, we must know how to do it so that no sign of passion appears. And here comes the second recommendation, which I named it this way:
Everything in its time, the Holy Spirit said; and I tell you that by taking one of these painful needs, a great one is also needed
89 almost om BD 90 of the] in the JI
91-96 "Nor should it be forgotten that the master himself with his negligence can sometimes be the cause of the need to punish. [...] No freedom, says Fenelon, no open-heartedness, always schools, silence, uncomfortable positions, corrections and threats, always an accuracy and a seriousness, of which those who demand it would be incapable: the tutors nothing they forgive the students and forgive everything themselves "- MoNFAT, The practice, p. 160.
97 "Try to make yourself loved before you fear" - The "Confidential Memories to the Directors" of Don Bosco, [edited by] F. Motto in RSS 3 (1984) 146. "Let everyone make you love if you want to be afraid" - Regulations for houses, p. 15.
102-114 «2. to know how to choose the favorable moment "- MONFAT, La praticata, p. 157.
"II. A certain caution is still necessary to seize the moment, when the Repression will be more healthy. "Everything in its time" says Savio: knowing it and using it are two very valuable conditions practiced by true fathers. Now what conditions of success would an educator, who must be a father, want to neglect when it is necessary for him to perform a duty so delicate, and so critical, how is that to punish? "The diseases of the soul, says Rollin, demand to be treated at least like those of the body. Nothing is more dangerous than a remedy given badly about and out of time. A wise doctor waits, that the sick person is in a state to support him and for this purpose he spied the favorable moments ". It is the experience gained from the goodness of the heart, which will make them stand out. [...] Never take it back or in yours, nor in your first impetus. If you do it in yours, if you see it, that you act out of humor and fury, not by reason and by friendship, you will lose your authority without remedy ... "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 162.
105 prudence to know how to seize the moment, in which repression is healthy. For the diseases of the soul demand to be treated at least like those of the body. Nothing is more dangerous than a remedy that is badly designed or out of time. A wise doctor waits for the sick person to be able to support him, and for this purpose he waits for the favorable moment 110. And we will be able to know him only from the experience perfected by the goodness of the heart. And first of all wait for yourself to be masters of yourself; do not let it be known that you work for mood or fury; because then you would lose your authority, and the punishment would become pernicious.
115 The famous saying of Socrates to a slave, of which he was not happy, is remembered by the profane: If you were not in anger you would fight. These little observers, who are our students, see little or light that it is the emotion of your face or the tone of the voice, if it is zeal of our duty, or ardor of passion, which ignited in us that fire. At 120 hours there is no need to lose the fruit of punishment: they, although young, feel that there is only reason that has the right to correct them. Secondly, do not punish a boy in the very instant of his phallus, out of fear, that not yet being able to confess his guilt, overcome passion, and feel the full importance of punishment, he will not become harsh and will not commit new ones and more serious.
116 was om ABD 125 noni om D of] of D
103 Cfr. Qoh 3.1. 8.6.
115-128 «In this regard, Rollin recalls the famous motto of Socrates to his slave, of which he was not happy. "If you weren't angry, I'd beat you" and end with this very correct and profound maxim: "no matter how little emotion appears on the face of the superior or in the tone of his voice, the pupil realizes soon enough, and feels not to be more the zeal of duty, but the ardor of passion, which kindled that fire, which is no longer necessary to make one lose the fruit of punishment, because the pupils, although young, feel that there is only the reason which has the right to correct them. " [...] "The first rule, says Rollin, is not to punish a child in the instant of his phallus, by theme, that having no free spirit to confess his phallus, to overcome his passion and to feel all the importance of that measure, do not get angry and do not commit new ones by pushing him to extremes; but to leave him time to recognize himself, to re-enter himself, to feel his wrong and at the same time justice and the necessity of punishment, and thereby enable him to profit from it "" - MONFAT, The practice, p. 163.
He must be given time to reflect, to re-enter himself, to feel all his wrong and at the same time justice and the need for punishment, and thereby enable him to profit from it. He always made me think of the conduct that the Lord wanted to keep with St. Paul, when he [was] anchor spirans irae atque minarum against the Christians; and I thought I saw the rule also left to us when we meet certain hearts recalcitrant to our wishes. Not immediately the good Jesus lands him: but after a long journey, but after having been able to reflect on his mission: but far from those who could have given him encouragement to persevere in the resolution to persecute the Christians. There instead on the doors of Damascus he shows himself in all his authority and power, and with strength and meekness he opens his mind to know his error. And it was precisely at that moment that the character of Saul was changed, and that from persecutor he became apostle of the Gentiles, and vessel of election. On this divine example I would like my dear Salesians to be formed, and that with enlightened patience and with industrious charity they would wait in the name of God for that opportune moment to correct their students.
128-140 Cfr. Act 9,1L19; 22,4-16; 26,9-18.
145-149 «3. to exclude everything, which made one suspect the passion "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 157.
"III. The third provision, that is, to exclude every passion "- MONFAT, La praticata, p. 165.
147-166 "The calm in the tone of voice, if not on the face, is rare when the educator punishes. Some believe, it is good to raise the voice, thus announcing a mood or resentment, which certainly does not have in the heart. Others without falling into this foolish affectation, take on a majestic appearance, or even, both deliberately and without realizing it, distance themselves from their soul by the calm and tenderness, which should fill it, to give their words something paternal. "What disgusts you, says Rollin, is that those, who act more out of spite, are those who notice less."
The title of father condemns a tone, which, if true, is too austere; if it is sliced, pedantic. "Let us regard as our children, says St. Augustine, all those over whom we have some power. Let us put ourselves at their service, ashamed of this, that the ruler should be ventilated in us, and let us not dominate them, that to serve them with greater pleasure ... From the moment, that they are our children we repel all anger in repressing their faults, or at least moderiamola in guise, that it seems suffocated at all ". No harshness in the soul, no contempt in the eyes, no insults on the lip, compassion for the moment, hope for the future, here is the father, here is the real correction "- MONFAT, La praticata, pp. 166-167.
Hardly when you punish yourself you keep that calmness that is necessary, to ward off any doubt that you work to make your authority be heard, or vent your passion. And the more you do with spite, the less one notices. Father's heart, which we must have, condemns this way of doing. We regard as our children those on whom we have to exercise some power. Let us almost put ourselves at their service, like Jesus who came to obey and not to command; ashamed of what might have looked in us as rulers; and let us not dominate them except to serve them with greater pleasure. This is what Jesus did with his Apostles, tolerating them in their ignorance and coarseness, in their little fidelity, and by treating sinners with a familiarity and familiarity to produce wonder in some, in others it is almost scandalous, and in many the holy hope of obtaining forgiveness from God. He therefore told us to learn from Him to be meek and humble of heart. Since they are our children, we turn away all anger when we have to suppress their faults, or at least moderate them in such a way that they seem to be suffocated at all. I non fol. 2v agitation of the soul, not contempt in the eyes, not insults on the lab 165 bro; but we feel the compassion for the moment, the hope for the future, and then you will be the true fathers, and you will make a true correction. or at least moderiamola in such a way that you seem to be suffocated at all. I non fol. 2v agitation of the soul, not contempt in the eyes, not insults on the lab 165 bro; but we feel the compassion for the moment, the hope for the future, and then you will be the true fathers, and you will make a true correction. or at least moderiamola in such a way that you seem to be suffocated at all. I non fol. 2v agitation of the soul, not contempt in the eyes, not insults on the lab 165 bro; but we feel the compassion for the moment, the hope for the future, and then you will be the true fathers, and you will make a true correction.
In certain very serious moments, a recommendation to God is more useful, an act of humility to Him, than a storm of words, which, if on the one hand produce only evil in those who hear them, on the other hand no advantage in whom deserves them. Let us remember our Divine Redeemer who forgave that city, which did not want to receive it within its walls, despite the insinuations for its humiliated decorum of those two of its zealous Apostles, who would have gladly seen it blasted for just punishment. The Holy Spirit recommends this calm to us with those sublime words of David: Irascimini et nolite to sin. And if we often see that our work is useless, and do not draw from our labor that tribulations and thorns, believe me, my dear ones, we must attribute it to the defective system of discipline.
168 which amend ex A2
153-154 Cfr. Mc 10,44-45.
156-160 Cfr. Lc 5,29-35; Mt 9,10-13; Mc 2,15-17.
160-161 Mt 11,29.
170-174 Cf. Le 9,51-55.
174-175 Eph 4, 26; Ps 4,5
I do not think it opportune to tell you in broad terms how God wanted one day to give a solemn and practical lesson to his prophet Elijah, who had something in common with some of Ios we, in the ardor for the cause of God, and in rash zeal to suppress the scandals, which he saw spread in the house of Israel. Your superiors will be able to report it to you in a relaxed way, as stated in the book of Kings; I limit myself to the last expression, which does so much to our case, and it is: Not in commotione Dominus, and that S. Teresa interpreted: Nothing disturb you.
Our dear and meek St. Francis, you know, had made a strict rule to himself, so his tongue would not speak when the heart was agitated. He used to say in fact: "I fear that in a quarter of an hour I will lose that little sweetness, which I have tried to accuse in twenty years, like a dew, like dew, in the vase of my poor heart. A bee takes several months to make a little honey, which a man eats in one bite: and then, what's the use of talking to those who do not understand? ».
185 post Dominus add (1) III Reg., XIX, II J 194 As they are torr ex Exly having A2 post day of the treaty A2
178-185 1 Reg 19,1-11.
185-186 «1 ° Niente ti turbi» - I «Confidential records to the directories», p. 145. Cfr. MB VII, 524.
187-204 "Just as sweet in all his conversation as in the tribunal of mercy, Francis never gave any command. [...] One day he was reproached for not having taken with due severity a young man who had insulted his mother to the point of striking her, and whom he had led him to make him feel the gravity of the crime: "What do you want?" I did what I could to arm myself with an anger that was not sinful, and, to tell you the truth, I am afraid of losing in a quarter of an hour the little sweetness that I have tried to accumulate over the past twenty years like a dew, like dew. in the jar of my poor heart.A bee takes several months to make a little honey that a man eats in one bite, and then, What is the use of talking to those who do not understand? This young man was not able to take advantage of my admonitions, since the bad disposition of his heart had deprived him of reason and wisdom: a harsh correction to him would have served nothing, and to me it would have been of great damage, making me do like those who they drown themselves wanting to save others ". [...] This sweetness gave the holy bishop such a mastery over hearts, which, if they were not of extraordinary hardness, like the distorted son we mentioned, he did as he wanted , nor could anyone resist him "- [AJM HAMON], Life of Saint Francis of Sales bishop and prince of Geneva compiled on contemporary manuscripts and authors by the curate of St. Sulpice of Paris. Turin, Cav. Pietro Marietti 1877, Volume III , pp. 356-357. M. HAMON], the Life of St. Francis of Sales, an Apostle and the Prince of Geneva, compiled by his writings and contemporary authors, by S. Sulpizio of Paris. Torino, Cav. Pietro Marietti 1877, vol. III, pp. 356-357. M. HAMON], the Life of St. Francis of Sales, an Apostle and the Prince of Geneva, compiled by his writings and contemporary authors, by S. Sulpizio of Paris. Torino, Cav. Pietro Marietti 1877, vol. III, pp. 356-357.
One day being reproached for having dealt with an overwhelming sweetness with a young man who had been made guilty with his mother of a serious lack, he said: "This young man was not able to take advantage of my admonitions, since the bad disposition of his heart had deprived him of reason and wisdom; a harsh correction would not have served him, and would have been of great harm to me, making me do as those who drown themselves wanting to save others ». These words of our admiring Patron, meek and wise educator of hearts, I wanted to emphasize to you because they call your attention better and more, and you too can more easily impress them in your memory.
205 In certain cases it may be beneficial to speak in the presence of the guilty with other persons of the misfortune of those who lack reason and honor until they are punished; it is good to suspend the ordinary signs of confidence and friendship until one sees that he needs consolation. The Lord comforted me several times with this simple artifice. Public shame is reserved as a last remedy. Sometimes you use another authoritative person who warns him, and tell him what you cannot, but you would like to tell him yourselves: that he will cure him of his shame, dispose him to return to you: seek the one with whom the boy can in his pain open more freely his heart, as perhaps he does not dare to do with you, doubting or not being believed, or in his pride of not having to do.
207 honor] heart BD
205-222 "Speak to his presence with other people of the misfortune of those, who lack reason and honor, to the point of being punished. Suspend the ordinary signs of friendship, until you see, that he needs consolation. Make the punishment public or keep it secret, depending on whether you consider it more useful to the pupil, or causing him great shame, or showing him, that he wants to save it. Public shame reserves it as a last remedy, sometimes use a reasonable person, who consoles him and tells him that you still cannot tell him yourself; may he cure him of his sad shame, let him return to you, and to which the child in his emotion can open his heart more freely, which he would not dare to do before you. But it appears especially, that you do not demand other subjection, than reasonable or necessary. Make sure that he condemns himself, and nothing else remains, than to mitigate the penalty he has accepted. Use each of the general rules according to your particular needs "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 168.
Let us see that we do not want any more subjection than the reasonable and necessary one. Make sure that he condemns himself to himself, and there is nothing left to do but mitigate the penalty he has accepted. A last recommendation remains for me to make, always on this serious subject. When you have obtained to gain this inflexible spirit, I beg you not only to leave him the hope of your forgiveness, but also that he may, with good conduct, erase the stain made by himself with his faults.
We must avoid the anxiety and the fear inspired by the correction and put a word of comfort. To forget and to forget the sad days of his mistakes is the supreme art of a good educator. To the Magdalene the good Jesus we do not read that he remembered his travia fol. 3rents; as well as with supreme paternal delicacy I made St. Peter confess and purge himself of his weakness. Even the child wants to be convinced that his superior has good hope of his amendment; and thus feeling again put by his charitable hand by the way of virtue. It will be achieved more with a look of charity, with a word of encouragement, which gives confidence to his heart, than with many reproaches, which only cause concern and compress its force.
222 accepted torr ex meritata A '234 did] do B 228-229 «4. to act so as to leave the hope of being forgiven »- MONFAT, The practice, p. 157.
230-232 "He [the director] then for his part opens his heart to all without ever making anyone known; not even remember the past deficiencies except to give paternal warnings »- Memories from 1841, p. 116.
231-238 «" Never tell his fault to the child, says Fenelon, without suggesting to him some means to overcome him; for it is necessary to avoid anxiety and discouragement inspired by correction, when it is not accompanied by a word of comfort ". The young man must remain convinced, that his superior also has good hope of his amendment, and thus feel put by his paternal hand on that path "- MONFAT, La praticata, p. 172.
"Above all, do not forget the educator, there being always or almost always in the life of children a kind of crisis of adolescence, very difficult to cross" MONFAT, The practice, p. 170.
232-234 Cfr. Mt 26,6-13; Mc 14,3-9.
234-235 Cfr. I, 18: 16-27; Lc 22.54-62; Mk 14: 26-31; Mt 26: 31-35.
I saw real conversions with this system, which otherwise seemed absolutely impossible. I know that some of my dearest children have no blush to reveal, that they were thus earned by our Congregation and therefore by God. All the boys have their dangerous days, and you too had them! and trouble, if we don't study ourselves to help them pass them quickly and without reproach. Sometimes just making people believe that you don't think they did it with malice, it's enough to prevent them from falling into the same foul. They will be guilty, but they want them to not believe themselves. Lucky us, if we know how to use this means to educate these poor hearts! Be assured, my dear children, that this art, which seems so easy and contrary to good effect, will make your ministry useful,
But should punishments never be used? I know, my dear ones, that the Lord wanted to compare himself to a vigilante rod: virga vigilans, to keep us from sin, even for fear of punishment. We too, therefore, can and must imitate in a subtle and wise manner the conduct that God wanted to trace to us with this effective figure. Let us therefore use this rod, but let us know how to do it with intelligence and charity, so that our punishment is of a nature to make better.
Let us remember that force punishes vice, but does not cure the zealous vi-265. The plant is not cultivated by bending it with harsh violence, and therefore the will is not educated by weighing it down with excessive yoke. Here is a series of punishments, which I alone would like to use among us.
264 non torr ex with A2 265 curving it] healing it J 257-258 Jer 1,11-12.
264-265 "Strength punishes vice, but does not cure it" - MONFAT, The practice, p. 180. 265-266 "The plant is not cultivated by bending it with harsh violence, distressing it, compressing it: the will is not educated by weighing it down with an iron yoke and removing it from developing and working", - MONFAT, The practice, p. 181.
267-271 "It has been observed that an unloving gaze upon some produces greater effect than a slap" - Bosco, The Preventive System, p. 91. "" I have spoken of the look, says Dupanloup, I must say, that among the means of moral repression, one of the most effective is in fact the discontent, stern, sad gaze of the educator, a gaze that remains unaltered for a time makes the young man feel, for little heart that he has, that is in disgrace, and provokes him to repentance, to the emenda ".
One of the most effective means of moral repression, is the look of discontent, severe and sad of the superior, who shows the guilty, for a little heart that he has, to be in disgrace, and that can cause him to repent and to 'amends. Private and paternal correction. Not too many reproaches; and make him feel the sorrow of relatives, and the hope of rewards. In the long run he will feel compelled to show gratitude and even generosity. Falling back, we are not short of charity; move on to more serious and severed warnings; thus it will be possible with justice to make him know the difference of his conduct, with that which is held towards him; showing him how he pays so much condescension, so much care to save him from dishonor and punishment. But not humiliating expressions; show yourself to have good hope about him,
In the most serious shortcomings one can come to the following punishments: to have lunch standing in its place, or at the table separately; have lunch right in the middle of the refectory, and lastly at the door of the refectory. But in all these cases, all that is given to the companions' canteen is given to the offender. Serious punishment is depriving him of recreation; but fol. 3v never put it in the sun or the weather so that it suffers damage.
276 his] our ABD
[...] Let us call it in particular and with paternal tone "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 184. 271-274 "Not too many reproaches for noting the first warning; let him see some rewards at the head of a few days of good will, the joy of his family, etc. [...] In the long run, he will then feel compelled to show gratitude and even generosity "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 185.
274-281 "We are not so short in charity. [...] After some new foul, move on to more serious and severed warnings; so you will have the right to point out to him the difference of his conduct with the one held towards him. A recapitulation of the one and the other will be made from the first warning, showing him with what insubordination and dappogaggine he has repaid so much condescension, so much care to preserve his honor. Not humiliating expressions; on the contrary, show that you always have good hope about him by declaring that you are ready to do everything in oblivion from the moment, that you will have given essays of better conduct "- MONFAT, La praticata, p. 186.
282 "It is, says Rollin, much of the merit of an educator to be able to imagine different species and degrees of punishment, to correct his pupils" - MONFAT, Practice, p. 188. 286-288 "The educator must absolutely forbid humiliating punishments; so too those, which could harm health; for example, arrests in cold weather, exposure to the sun and the like "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 188.
Not questioning him for a day in the school may be a severe punishment; but don't leave more. Meanwhile, let us provoke otherwise to do penance for his absence. Now what am I going to tell you about? This kind of punishment is too frequent for adventure. On this subject, I wanted to ask what the famous educators said. There are those who approve it, and those who blame it, as a useless and dangerous thing both to the master and to the disciple. However, I leave you the freedom to do this, warning you that for the master it is a great danger to go to excesses without any benefit, and that he gives himself the opportunity to murmur and find great pity for the apparent persecution of the master. I think nothing rehabilitates, and it's always a punishment and a shame. I know someone has our Brothers used to think of the study of some poem or sacred or profane, and that with such useful means he obtained the goal of greater attention, and some intellectual profit. Then it occurred that omnia cooperantur in bonum to those who seek God alone, his glory and the health of the 305 souls. This confrere of yours converted; I believe it to be a special blessing from God, and a rather unique case that is rare: but it was successful because it showed itself to be charitable.
305 io] what J 306 special om J 291 «i think, when they are not the simple repetition of a poorly done job» are prohibited - Regulation for elementary education, art. 98.
291-300 "There is, says Dupanloup, another way of hitting the poor schoolchildren, which does not seem to me to be less coarse, nor less fatal than beatings; it is to give them the thoughts and sometimes to overload them. This kind of punishment is too frequent for adventure. In our eyes it is a material punishment that is more useless and dangerous both for the teacher and for the pupil. [...] I do not think anything rehabilitates and it is always a pain, a shame "- MONFAT, The practice, pp. 192-193.
303-304 Cf. Rom 8.28.
308-309 "We have mentioned certain students, delivered to the Oratory by the police headquarters and other public authorities, often refractory to any warning and to any improvement. [...] To try every means to correct them and not to expel them, with the consent of Don Bosco some chambers of reflection were established, where these publics, refractory to every provision of the Regulation, which seemed irreducible, were segregated during school and recreations, because without harming the comrades, they could stay in the Oratory for a few days, understand the imminent danger they were threatened with, take a generous resolution and amend »- AMADEI, The Servant of God Michele Rua, p. 224. 308-313 "Take care of the educator not to punish with several days of imprisonment, it would be a failure to know the heart of a young person. There is no evil in which the anger and despondency that assail him under the blow of a punishment of such length are not worth rushing ...
But one never makes use of the so-called reflection room. There is no malady, in which the pupil cannot fall into anger and despondency, which assails him in a punishment of this nature. 310 The devil takes from this punishment a violent empire above him, and urges him to serious faults, almost as a revenge of the one who wanted to punish him in that way (1).
(1) Fearing that in some college, for rare exceptions and absolute necessity, it was believed that it would be necessary to use the dressing room, here are the precautions I would like to use: The tate- chist or other superior often goes to visit the poor culprit, and with words of charity and of compassion try to pour oil into that heart so exacerbated. His state is pitied, and he is industrious in making him understand how all superiors are sorry to have had to use such extreme punishment, and be able to ask for forgiveness, to make submissive acts, and to call for him to be made a another proof of its emendation. If it seems that this punishment produces its effect, it is raised even before time, and one will surely succeed in earning his heart.
The punishment must be a remedy: now we must be in a hurry to leave it, when we have obtained the double purpose of warding off evil, and of preventing its return. Thus being able to forgive, one also obtains the precious effect of healing the wound in the heart of the child; he sees that he has not lost the goodwill of his superior, and courageously forgets his duty.
The deficiencies against the discipline of the college were only aimed at the summentovati punishments; but in the painful cases that some pupil gave a grave scandal, or committed offense to the Lord, then he be led immediately by the Superior, who in his prudence will take those effective measures that he will believe appropriate. That if one would make himself deaf to all these wise means of amendment and was of a bad example and scandal, then he must be removed without remission, but as far as possible he is to provide for his honor.
312 falli] follie J 327 bravely] mostly J 330 grave torr ex some A 'The demon takes from that a violent empire on him, and pushes him to serious faults, as to take revenge of the cruel educator, that overwhelmed him »- MONFAT , The practice, p. 169.
329-339 "" Those who for their companions will be of a bad example and of scandal, must be removed, without remission, but in the same way, that the best can be provided for their honor ". [...] It is not possible to reach this extreme without having first introduced it to the family, and without having committed the parents to help us to resolve it "- MONFAT, The practice, p. 190.
This is achieved by advising the young man to call relatives who remove him, or to advise relatives directly to change college, in the hope that elsewhere their son will do better. This act of charity only works well at all times, and leaves, even on certain painful occasions, a grateful memory in relatives and pupils.
Finally it remains for me to tell you again from whom should start the order, the time and the way to punish.
These must always be the Director, without however he having to appear. It is his private correction, because it can more easily penetrate certain less sensitive hearts; his part is the generic and also public correction; and it is also his part to apply the punishment, without however he, by ordinary means, must perform it or order it. Therefore no one would like me to refrain from chastising without fol. 4r 350 subject to the advice or approval of its Director, who alone determines the time, manner and quality of the punishment. No one should be removed from this loving dependence, and no pretexts are sought to elude his surveillance (1). There must be no excuse for making exceptions. (1) The teachers or assistants never put any offender out of school, but in case of failure they should be accompanied by the Superior.
this rule of the utmost importance. We are therefore obedient to this recommendation that I leave you, and God will bless you and console you for your virtue.
Remember that education is a matter of the heart, and that only God is the master, and we will not succeed in anything, if God does not teach us the art, and he gives us the keys in his hand. We therefore procure in all ways and also with this humble and complete dependence to take possession of this fortress always closed to rigor and harshness.
352 loving] authoritative J ricerchi] seek J
354-355 "In need of punishments, they inflict them in the school, but by punishment they never remove anyone from the class. When serious cases occur, they send the school counselor to call or have the offender led to him »- House Regulations, chap. VI, 6. "Having the case of having to inflict punishments outside school, or taking decisions of great importance, report or refer everything to the School Councilor, or to the Director of the House" - Ibid., Cap. VI, 7.
Let us study to make ourselves loved, to insinuate the feeling of duty and the holy fear of God, and we will see with admirable ease opening the doors of so many hearts, and joining us to sing the praises and blessings of the One who wanted to become our model , our way, our example in everything, but particularly in the education of youth.
Pray for me, and always believe me in the Holy One. Heart of Jesus
Day of St. Francis
Your Aff. Father and Friend Sac. Giovanni Bosco
364 "Those who want to dominate the hearts of young people, above all seek to be loved" - TEPPA, Warnings, p. 21.
373 Giovanni] Gio. J
In the meeting with Don Bosco of the secular alumni of Valdocco, on July 23, 1882, at the raising of the tables among other interventions, one of their representatives, prof. Alessandro Fabre, read his speech on Don Bosco's politics. Scherzo ... 'A semi-serious controversy was developed against certain newspapers that saw "political-party" implications in the action of Don Bosco. An optics of this type persisted, strengthened, in the following year, particularly on the occasion of the triumphal reception in Paris, almost a national fact, and the rapid visit of July, in the castle of Frohsdorf, near Vienna, to the Count of Chambord, gravely ill. In Paris, besides and more than as a thaumaturgist, he had expressed himself as an educator worried about the fate of society; to it, orderly, conservative, where justice was called almsgiving (which gives subsidies and receives gratitude) he consecrates his work, "the education of youth", the highest form of charity, and therefore of sociality, in the imagination of his listeners the ideal form of solution of the "social question". It is the context within which the words with which Don Bosco expounds to his alumni the meaning "political" of his educational-welfare choice in favor of "unsafe and dangerous" youth is placed. The explicit intervention develops what was already stated in the conference held at the Turin Cooperators the same evening of his arrival from France, on May 31: "Do you want me to suggest a relatively easy, very advantageous and fruitful work of the most sought-after results? Well, work around the good education of the youth, of that especially the poorest and most abandoned, which is in greater numbers, and you will easily succeed in giving glory to God, in procuring the good of Religion, in saving many souls and in cooperating effectively in reform, in the welfare of civil society; why do reason, religion, history, experience show that religious and civil society will be good or bad, according as good or bad is youth, what does Corona do now?
1 Published by the typ. G. Derossi, Turin 1882, 16 p.
2 BS 7 (1883) n. 7, July, p. 104.
At the year 1883 the Salesian Francesco Cerruti (1844-1917), director of the municipal high school of Alassio and inspector or provincial superior of the works of Don Bosco of Liguria and Tuscany, 'published a synthetic History of pedagogy in Italy from the origins to' our times.4 After two years he was appointed and, in the following year (1886), elected General School Councilor or Director General of Studies of the Salesian Society, remaining there until his death. History is divided into three great eras: ancient or pagan until the 4th century. after Christ, Christian until the beginning of the 16th century, modern. It is also a story of ideas and evaluations, as clearly shown in the Introduction. In fact, it intends essentially to be the history of the struggle between two realities that in the immortal monument of the pedagogical wisdom of our ancestors "." The second period marks the advent of superior Christian pedagogy, characterized by two fundamental characteristics, "universality and unity", which reaches its full expression in the Middle Ages. " In accordance with Ozanam's thesis, the balance breaks with the last period of this era, the Renaissance and the Reformation, and stabilizes with the modern epoch: "rebellion of reason against revelation", "revolt of freedom" against authority "," promoted and fomented first by the naturalism of the Byzantine scholars, then by the Reformation or rather Lutheran heresy ". 9 "Pedagogy in the third age, which followed and runs to the present day, bears the imprint of this serf under the aspect of
3 See JM PRELLEZO, Francesco Cerruti Director General of the Salesian School and Press (1885-1917), in "Salesian Historical Researches" 5 (1986) 127-164.
4 Turin, Tip. and books Salesian 1883, 320 p. See JM PRELLEZO, Don Bosco y the "History of Pedagogy" by Francesco Cerruti (1844-1917), in The Commitment of Education, edited by JM Prellezo. Rome, LAS 1991, pp. 435-450.
5 F. CERRUTI, History of pedagogy ..., p. 5
6 AND CERRUTI, History of pedagogy ..., p. 7.
F. CERRUTI, History of pedagogy ..., p. 10
F. CERRUTI, History of pedagogy ..., p., 81.
9 F. CERRUTI, History of pedagogy ..., p. 10
10 F. CERRUTI, History of pedagogy, .., p. 11
However, it is not subject to "essentially Christian Italian pedagogy", "enlivened and supported by the Catholic Church and by numerous religious congregations, which kept them in one and the splendor of ancient civilization and the creative spirit of the new"; the figures of Rosmini, Rayneri, Tommaseo, Lambruschini, the Molino-Colombini, the Franceschi-Ferrucci, reconstructors of «that chain of noble and glorious traditions, which rejoins for Vittorino da Feltre Pitagora to Rosmini, the ancient pagan-Italic school to the modern Catholic-Italian one "."
Besides Pythagoras, however, he particularly emphasizes in the ancient age «Quintilian, that is the most illustrious ancient pedagogist», «lived almost always in Rome from 42 to 118 after GC». To him the Author dedicates a considerable number of pages.12 He, in fact, represents the first "humanistic" moment of that preventive synthesis [which, however, in Quintiliano Cerruti leads back to the only "disciplinary system"] that he will have in Vittorino from Feltre his "Christian" moment 13 and he will find the perfect synthesis in Don Bosco. "
12 AND CERRUTI, History of pedagogy ..., pp. 69-73.
13 Cerruti will dedicate an entire chapter to it: Ibid., Pp, 151-161.
14 The historiographical scheme is presented again by Cerruti twenty-five years later in the pamphlet A pedagogical trilogy namely Quintilian, Vittorino da Feltre and Don Bosco. Rome, Salesian Printing School 1908, 19 p.
THE ONOMASTIC OF THE FATHER
AND THE CHILDREN WITH IT.
We did hope that we would return to Don Bosco's name day, just mentioned in the previous issue; and here we keep our promise both to at least briefly recall the precious words spoken by him on that occasion, both to say briefly about the agape, which took place in the Oratory on the 15th and 19th of the last July.
First of all, let us recall the affectionate demonstration, which in the morning of June 24th, precisely the feast of St. John the Baptist, gave to Don Bosco his ancient pupils, who from 1841 until these last years received from him in the Oratory of St. Francis Sales of Christian and civil education. A considerable number of them residing in the city or in its vicinity, in their own name and on behalf of several hundred of their companions scattered in each country, presented themselves to him accompanied by the sound of the musical band. Collected in a special room, they offered him the gifts, procured with the spontaneous oblations of each one of them, the principal of which was the magnificent golden crown, of which we have spoken / in the novena report and on the feast of Mary Help of Christians; then they moved on to the poems. On behalf of all he read an affectionate speech the Sac. D. Onorato Colletti, Provost of Faule; who, after the proclamation of the names of those present and those absent, who either by letter or other means had expressed a desire to participate in the aforesaid demonstration of gratitude and gratitude, declaimed a poem again, which was deservedly applauded.
Finally, Don Bosco, visibly moved, took the floor. He expressed his lively joy, which he felt at that moment in seeing his many beloved children again; he assured that he always loved them, and with them he loved those, who were not present there with the body, but they were well with the affection; he thanked them for the filial demonstration, which they repeated more and more; he praised the pious thought of offering him a gift, which made him look good in the Church of Mary Help of Christians, and he had above all words marked by great affection for the Provost of Faule.
+ BS 7 (1883) n. 8, August, pp. 127-128.
- It is true, said Don Bosco, that the speaker and poet, speaking of Don Bosco, went out in pious exaggeration and made use of the rhetorical figure called the hyperbole; but this is a forgivable license to the children, who in expressing the feelings of the soul are more to the dictates of the heart than to those of the mind. But always remember that Don Bosco was not and is nothing but a poor instrument in the hands of a very skilled artist, indeed of a most wise and omnipotent artist, who is God; to God, therefore, all praise, honor, and glory are to be paid - After all, Don Bosco added, our Fr. Colletti has said well, that the Oratory has done great things so far; and I will add that with the help of God and with the protection of Mary Help of Christians, she will accomplish other still greater ones. Beyond Heaven's help, what facilitates us and will facilitate us to do good is the very nature of our work. The purpose to which we aim returns welcome to all men, not excluding the same ones, who in terms of religion do not feel it with us. If there is someone who opposes us, we must say that he does not know us, or that he does not know what we are doing. The civil education, the moral education of the youth or abandoned, or unsafe, to remove it from idleness, ill-doing, dishonor, and perhaps even prison, that is what our work aims at. Or what sensible man, what civil authority could prevent us from doing so? Recently, as you know, I was in Paris, and I spoke in various Churches, to plead the cause of our works, and, frankly, to make money, to provide bread and soup for our young people, which never lose their appetite. Well, among the listeners there were those who went there only to learn about the political ideas of Don Bosco; for some assumed that I had gone to Paris to stir up the revolution; others to look for members of a party, and so on; so there were benevolent people, who really feared that some bad trick would happen to me. But from the first words all illusions ceased, all fears came down, and Don Bosco was left free to flow from one end of France to the other. No indeed, with our work we do not make politics; we respect the established authorities, we observe the laws to be observed, we pay taxes and we carry on, asking only that they let us do good to poor youth, and save souls.
Politics defines itself as the science and the art of governing the state well. Now the work of the Oratory in Italy, in France, in Spain, in America, in all the countries, where it has already been established, practicing especially to the relief of the most needy youth, tends to diminish the urchins and vagabonds; tends to diminish the number of small criminals and thieves; tends to empty the prisons; in a word, it tends to form good citizens, who, far from causing problems to the public authorities, will be their support, to maintain order, tranquility and peace in society. This is our policy; of this only we have dealt with so far, we will deal with this in the future. And it is precisely this method, which has allowed D. Bosco to do good from first to you, and then to many other young people of all ages and countries. And what's the point of getting into politics? With all our efforts what could we get? Nothing but making us perhaps impossible to continue our work of charity. Today's political things can be regarded as a steam engine, running fast on the via ferrata, dragging a convoy behind it, perhaps to the precipice and to ruin. Do you want to get in the middle of the tracks to stop it? You would be crushed. Do you want to scream to terrify her? But he does not hear, and you will tear your throat uselessly. What to do then? Take sides here and there, let it pass, until it stops by itself, or God stops it with its almighty hand. Certainly in the world there must also be those, who are interested in political things, now to give advice, now to report dangers and the like; but this task is not for us poor people. Religion and prudence tell us instead: Live as good Christians, take care of the moral education of your child, teach the children of your colleges and parishes well in catechism, that's all. This, I repeat, is the conduct of Don Bosco, who is not very political, who does not even read a newspaper; may this be your conduct, my dear children, and you too will have that great good that I desire you, I want to say, harmony and peace in your families, prosperity in your temporal shops, a long life free of grave troubles and tribulations, and especially the good of all goods, which is perseverance in the grace of God and the happiness of heaven, where I hope for the merits of our Lord Jesus Christ and for the intercession of Mary. one day we will all come together to sing his eternal glories.
These words of Don Bosco were listened to with the greatest attention. But since he had called pious exaggerations and rhetorical figures the praises attributed to him just a little, so prof. Germano Candido to defend the Orator's expressions, referring to the unsuspected testimony of a newspaper in Milan, which in those days repeated almost the same praise - Possible that good and bad, the professor observed, agree together to exaggerate piously and to overbear around D. Bosco? No; but it is the truth, but they are the splendid facts that make one talk. So live Don Bosco, alive in our hearts, alive in everyone's heart.
"The pedagogical wisdom of Quintilian" (ca. 35-95)
But where Quintilian's pedagogical wisdom appears above all, it is in the disciplinary system that he wants to be in his judgment and of all the wise not repressive, but preventive. Far be the beat, which is a slave thing and only suitable for hardening the heart; the master instead strives to train his pupil with continuous vigilance, a sweet and severe assistance at the same time, which by taking the right balance between looseness and rigor possibly prevents evil, without having to have to repress it afterwards. Prudent in his work does not claim more than what the age of the child entails, zealously animate him to the study with an eye on his beauty and gentleness, nor omit praises, prizes, emulation and what else can suggest an ingenious shrewdness.
"The most illustrious of educators", Vittorino da Feltre (c. 1373-1446)
But among how many illustrious educators Italy boasts, from Pythagoras to the present day, the name of a man shines with beautiful immortal light, on which he collects all the wisest and greatest of what has been said or worked around the magisterium of 'education. It is these Vittorino Rambaldoni from Feltre, a town on the Belluno area, which revived and continued not only the glorious pedagogical traditions of the Italic school, but led them to perfection under the divinely vivifying breath of an essentially educational religion, which is Christianity (. ..). Who can tell me what wise direction Vittorino should give to the moral education of his students? Persuaded that in such an important work, there must be nothing to delay the course or diminish its effectiveness, it did not admit of it his colleges that religious and costume masters, and with rigor that would seem overwhelming to those who do not know how easy a contagious impression is in the minds of the young, denied entry to people who were not well known to him. His pupils never left neither day nor night, and as far as was possible, he assisted them with his eyes. Most deficiencies prevented vigilance, since no one knows that solitude is for children strong incitement to guilt. his own eyes. Most deficiencies prevented vigilance, since no one knows that solitude is for children strong incitement to guilt. his own eyes. Most deficiencies prevented vigilance, since no one knows that solitude is for children strong incitement to guilt.
+ E CERRUTI, History of pedagogy in Italy from its origins to our times. Turin, Tip. and Libr. Salesian 1883, pp. 72, 151, 159-161, 269-270.
Whoever knew of corrupt or irreligious customs, admonished with severity and firmness, led them inexorably if they showed themselves incorrigible and dangerous to others. Above the young, the overwhelming and inconsiderate speaking and lying; he instilled in those tender hearts fraternal love, as is shown by many generous facts which illustrated his Institutes. The Prendilacqua tells of himself that, having fallen at random through a lake and near to submerge, they threw themselves to save him several of his fellow disciples, and they succeeded in the midst of the shouts of joy and enthusiasm of the surrounding. He showed himself mild, and easy to forgive those who lacked for youthful vivacity or foresight or recognized at least and quickly condemned the phallus committed; but he punished with just severity when the guilt was work of malice or added obstinacy. Disdainful of life and weariness he loved the meekness and the words with strong affection and with his example he preached it and wanted it observed together with those virtues, which are a clear sign of nobility of soul, courtesy and affability cogl'inferiore, the kindness with equals, respect and love for old people.
The best care was to inform the pupils' soul of piety and religion, which the educational edifice founded on another base collapses very well and falls apart with ruin. Vittorino knew this and never tired of reminding his family of them. So it is that not only did no suffering joke or motto to sacred things suffer or that he felt irreligious, but he tried in every way so that their duties were never lacking, or rather they should study to achieve Christian perfection. The practices of piety were not too numerous, but voluntarily maintained. In the morning after some devotions prayers attended the Holy Mass. The holidays were mainly dedicated to ecclesiastical functions and works of charity. Add the frequency of the sacraments, which he recommended with animated and full of faith words as the most valid support of virtue. Moreover, I will say with the words of Jacopo Bernardi, every act and every word of Vittorino was a religious instruction, if it is true that religion has the good of the individual and society as its unalterable goal and consecrates all the duties and rights that in the family, in the city, in the nation make man better.
"The humanitarian work of this man": Don Bosco
But the masculine working class needed above all the work of wise and zealous educators. And certainly history will record among these in immortal characters the name of that living glory of Piedmont, which is the venerable Fr. Giovanni Bosco, a native of Castelnuovo d'Asti. Moved to the deplorable intellectual, moral and material state, in which he saw so much youth lost, the humble priest threw into his home as early as 1841, assisted by his excellent mother, the first foundations of that Hospice, which later grew into a giant and took so vast proportions under the title of Oratory of San Francesco di Sales. The children housed and maintained free of charge, sent along the day to work with important art leaders, trained in reading, writing and counting with at least an hour of daily teaching, when the evening and festive schools were still new in Piedmont, trained in gymnastic exercises of every kind, educated in religion and morality with catechisms and festive gatherings, this is the highly humanitarian work of this man, in which you do not know which is greater, if the ardor of a charity that embraces everything or the height of wisdom which provides for everything. And it really gave the singular proof of the first when, to make the metric system well known, he published for this purpose for the artisans and the country people since 1848, that is to say a year and a half before the Kingdom of Sardinia went into effect for law, a commendable little treatise for simplicity, popularity and precision. As for the second, the few pages on the preventive system in education would certainly be enough. humble little pamphlet, where also you will find much more and much better than sound pedagogical maxims, than in so many voluminous works of this kind. In fact, you see here in brief words the flower of ancient pagan civilization and the essence of the new Christian Catholic, Quintilian's theoretical wisdom and the practical sensibility of Vittorino da Feltre, the Gospel in one word and what is legitimate to you in the inheritance of the human spirit. + the Gospel in one word and what is legitimate about the inheritance of the human spirit. + the Gospel in one word and what is legitimate about the inheritance of the human spirit. +
+ Obviously it is the testimony of a man fervently close to those who have been since his childhood «father, brother, friend» and who remains such even more now, that he has become close collaborator.
What has been said about various documents collected in this volume is sufficient to resize what the author writes about an alleged priority of Don Bosco in certain educational initiatives.
While the pages on the preventive system of 1877 have enjoyed almost uninterrupted fame from the beginning "the letter from Rome" of 1884 has experienced unequal seasons of presence and oblivion. Read, at least in the short editorial, to the exclusive addressee, the "small ancient world" of the Oratory of Turin-Valdocco, and, in the double redaction, recurrent, among the "dreams", in the notebooks of the novices of the end of the century, in the redaction long seems to enter a new historical and ideal phase, universal pedagogical message, around 1920.
In that year, on April 6, the Rector Major of the Salesian Society, Fr. Paolo Albera, explicitly referred to it in a circular written as a commentary on the Invitation to the inauguration of the Monument to Don Bosco, in Maria Ausiliatrice Square, which he had not been able to inaugurate the centenary of his birth in 1915. " For the inauguration of the Monument to the Venerable Don Bosco he develops reflections that conclude with an invitation to the Salesians to erect "another monument (...), an imperishable monument, aere perennius": "to revive in itself its virtues , its educational system, its spirit, all of it ".2 And in relation to that" celestial pedagogy "which is the" educational system of Don Bosco ", whose norms he recommends to reread in the" golden age his treatise on the system " price quotation'",
1 Invitation to the inauguration of the Monument to Don Bosco, circulated to the Provincials of March 24, 1920, in Circular Letters of Fr. Paolo Albera to the Salesians (Turin, SEI 1922), pp. 306307. The day established for the inauguration, handed down from 1915 due to the First World War, was May 23, the eve of the feast of Mary Help of Christians.
2 Circular of 6 April 1920, for the inauguration of the Monument to the Venerable Don Bosco, in Circular Letters ..., p. 311.
3 Ibid., Pp. 312-313.
In the first issue of the Acts of the Superior Chapter of the Pious Salesian Society of 24 June of the same year, the General Scholastic Councilor, Fr Bartolomeo Fascie, announced: "In the last circular of 6 April, we use Mr D. Albera, after announcing that it would published separately, so that he could more easily run around the hands of all, the Bosco Treaty on the preventive system, he would stop in the meantime to recommend to our imitation - that love, that affectionate concern for young people that was the secret of his marvelous ascendancy over them - comforting his recommendation with precious norms and warnings, gathered from a letter from Ven. Our Founder dated from Rome, May 10th 1884. In the hope of being able to bring everyone to the full letter of D. Bosco,I limit myself for now to making the recommendations of our Rector Major my own, communicating together that the edition of the Trattatello has been carried out and that it is sent to the Provincials ".4
In the following file of the Acts of the Chapter appeared the text of the letter with a brief presentation by the same School Councilor: "Here in its entirety is the letter of our Founder Ven, which I had announced to you and promised. I would certainly not respect the word of Don Bosco and you, if I thought it necessary or even just to present it with recommendations and comments. It speaks for itself with such clarity and efficacy, and thus represents the progress of our houses, according to which in them the practice of the preventive system lives and informs the whole organism of the house, or is neglected, or weakly applied, or badly understood or deformed, that everyone can draw from them the appropriate applications to his personal conduct to get animated or correct himself.
Don Albera is still referred to the letter of 1884 a few months before his death (October 29, 1921) in the last important circular letter On vocations of May 15, 1921. He indicates "the family spirit" as "the most favorable terrain for vocations" , urging at the same time to be inspired by the message of 1884: "Let us therefore revive around us that familiarity that our good Father has so warmly and effectively described in his memorable letter from Rome of 10 May 1884, which is the commentary () plus authentic of its preventive system.
4 "Acts of the Superior Chapter of the Pious Salesian Society", Year IN 1, 24 June 1920, p. 14.
5 "Acts of the Superior Chapter", Year IN 2, 24 August 1920, pp. 39-40. The text of the letter is reported in pp. 40-48, according to the transcription, close to the original by Don Lemoyne, performed by d. Gioachino Berto (see below ms E).
You can read or re-read it, my dear ones, in the Acts of the Superior Chapter (pp. 40-48); and I make the hottest vows so that the students of our Novitiate and Student House will study it together with the Preventive System with true filial love, so as to impress them deeply in the mind and in the heart. Indeed, to make this study easier, I will shortly print it in a separate booklet. "6
Several years later, along with some local news, the publication of the letter in the long draft was followed in two works that were in some way "official": the Biographical Memoirs of St. John Bosco 'and the Epistolary of St. John Bosco, both by Eugenio Ceria. The short editorial, the only certainly "original", had fallen into total oblivion.
Until recently, there was talk of the "letter from Rome", referring exclusively to the long drafting. It found a place, but not always, in anthologies of writings of Don Bosco, starting obviously from the timely and fortunate one of Don Bartolomeo Fascie of the educational method of Don Bosco.'9
Some attention also aroused in some scholars of Don Bosco's educational system. We can remember: E. VALENTINI, The Marian pedagogy of Don Bosco, in "Salesianum" 15 (1953) 100-164: to this "Magna Charta of the Salesian Educational System", as he calls it, he dedicates the pp. 137-154; P. BRAIDO, 10 May 1884, in «Pedagogical Orientations» 6 (1959) 545-558 and The poem of educational love. St. John Bosco: Letter from Rome of 10 May 1884, in Don Bosco today educator. Ztirich, PAS- Verlag 1963, pp. 77-96 (the text published by D. E. Ceria is presented); P. STELLA, Don Bosco in the history of Catholic religiosity, vol. II. Religious mentality and spirituality. Rome, LAS 1981 (I ed. 1969), pp. 467-469, which concludes the brief analysis with some pertinent questions and a concise evaluation: «But what exactly did Don Bosco dictate? the letter or a cloth? a series of memories or the whole document with the periodic emphatic and very extensive and with the adjective that is found even in the same note in brackets of the secretary?
6 "Acts of the Superior Chapter", Year II. N. 4, 15 May 1921; then in the Circular Letters of D. Paolo Albera, pp. 458-459.
7 See MB XVII 107-114. The text is close to that prepared for the MBs from d. GB Lemoyne in the Documents.
8 See E IV 261-269. The text is similar to the one reproduced in MB.
9 See DB FASCIE, Of the educational method of Don Bosco. Sources and comments (= Pedagogy readings 4). Turin, SEI 1927, pp. 73-80. The text is identical to that published in 1920 in the "Acts of the Chapter".
We do not know the minute of this letter by Don Bosco, but only the original (in two versions) written by Don Lemoyne and signed by Don Bosco. Nevertheless for its content it is to be considered as one of the most effective and richest pedagogical documents of Don Bosco "."
More recently, the Letter of St. John Bosco of Rome on the state of the Oratory has been placed in an appendix to the text of the Constitutions and Regulations of the two religious Congregations founded by Don Bosco, the Society of St. Francis of Sales and the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians. "
In various documents, manuscripts and print drafts, the text of the letter in the broader draft is preceded by a chronicle of a protagonist and, together, the only direct witness, GB Lemoyne. On an examination of the documents, this is largely unreliable, even though the inspirer and the editor of both letters remains undeniable. "D. Bosco in those nights when he found himself ill had made one of those dreams that are epoch-making. He told D. Lemoyne several times and then made him lay it down and read it, correcting it. Then he had to redo and recopy. As it concerned especially the members of the Salesian congregation a new job was needed so that it could be read in public in the presence of all the youth of the Oratory. Preserved then the whole second part had to put aside what we verbally said in the first part, representing only the scene of the two recreations. This letter was sent on 10 May. Read in public by Fr Rua he made a big impact; for several years now young people had not been accustomed to hearing letters addressed to them by Don Bosco. This was the sign of a reform in the Oratory which we will talk about in the progress of our story. The first effect of this dream was that Don Bosco knew the state of so many consciences even of certain ones that seemed very good, so that some were removed from the house ".12 Rua made a big impact; for several years now young people had not been accustomed to hearing letters addressed to them by Don Bosco. This was the sign of a reform in the Oratory which we will talk about in the progress of our story. The first effect of this dream was that Don Bosco knew the state of so many consciences even of certain ones that seemed very good, so that some were removed from the house ".12 Rua made a big impact; for several years now young people had not been accustomed to hearing letters addressed to them by Don Bosco. This was the sign of a reform in the Oratory which we will talk about in the progress of our story. The first effect of this dream was that Don Bosco knew the state of so many consciences even of certain ones that seemed very good, so that some were removed from the house ".12
10 P. STELLA, Don Bosco in the history of Catholic religiosity, vol. II, p. 469.
11 See Constitutions and Regulations of the Society of St. Francis de Sales. Rome 1972, pp. 267-280 and 1984, pp. 243-252; Constitutions and Regulations of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians. Rome 1982, pp. 265-277. In the Salesian Constitutions of 1972 the text is taken from the MBs; in those of 1984 by the "Acts of the Chapter" of 1920.
12 The text is contained in a manuscript prepared for the vast collection of documents that were to be used for the preparation of the Biographical Memoirs. At the end, Lemoyne, who is its editor, adds this notation: "Fasca LXV p. 189 - 10 May 1884 "(see below ms D).
G.B. Lemoyne 13
GB Lemoyne (1839-1916), a Genoese priest, joins the incipient religious society of Don Bosco in 1864. Director of the college of Lanzo Torinese from 1865 to 1877, starting in 1883 he became Don Bosco's secretary and collaborator , together, secretary of the Superior Council of the Salesian Society. A man rich in intelligence and imagination and with a strong affection, he knows how to speak to the hearts of young people, as is shown by the collective letters he writes to them during the forced absences from his educational family and, alongside Don Bosco, he interprets the task that, until from the first days it is heard to assign: «Well I entrust you my poor person. Use me charity, especially in listening to me. I will have no secrets for you, nor those of my heart, nor those of the Congregation. as already appears from a letter to his mother on December 18, 1883: "I have been moved to Turin (...). Don Bosco wanted me to be his special helper to work with him. The Lord could not give me a more beautiful place (...). For my part, if they had made me King I would not be happier than I am "." as already appears from a letter to his mother on December 18, 1883: "I have been moved to Turin (...). Don Bosco wanted me to be his special helper to work with him. The Lord could not give me a more beautiful place (...). For my part, if they had made me King I would not be happier than I am "."
It is not the first time, nor will it be the last, that his contribution not of pure amanuensis is made present in the writings desired, inspired and signed by Don Bosco, as appears from some significant documentation.
On October 15, 1883, a letter was sent to Fr. Lemoyne: "Dear Mr. Lemoyne, please give me the pleasure of completing the dream of America and then send it to me soon. Count Colle is eager, but he wants it translated into French; which I will try to do immediately "."
13 Your d. GB Lemoyne cfr •. E. CERIA, Profili dei Capitolari salesiani deaths dall'anno from 1865 to 1950 with a historical synthesis of the Salesian Society and the historical beliefs of Regole. Colle Don Bosco (Asti), LDC 1951, pp. 382-400; AND WEAR, Les Memorie I by Giovanni Battista Lemoyne. Study of a fundamental essay) sur la jeunesse de saint Jean Bosco. Lyon 1962: Première partie. The author of Memorie et son oeuvre, pp. 27-93; TL, v. GB Lemoyne, in Dictionary biographical of the Salesians. Torino 1869, pp. 166-167; G. FAVINI, D. Giovanni Battista Lemoyne, first cousin, biographer of Don Bosco (pro manuscripto). Torino 1974; AND BRAIDOR. ARENAI. LLATA, Don Giovanni Battista Lemoyne through 20 letters to don Michele Rua, in RSS 7 (1988) 89-170.
14 MB XVI 419.
15 ASC 272 Lemoyne.
16 D IV 237.
Referring instead to 1884, the biographer informs: "The Saint made a dream in the month of July (...). In the following days he briefly explained to Don Lemoyne what he had seen, but referring only to the very general sense of what he had heard (...); then he told him that it was worth as a trace for his free performance. The secretary executed the order, but he always missed the chance to read him the long composition "."
And again in relation to a time immediately following, E. Celia writes: "Don Bosco has been ruminating on the idea of letting the authoritative word reach everyone for a while now. In fact in 1883 he had told Fr. Lemoyne: "In time I will give you a job." - So, after a year and meeting him he asked him: - Do you remember what I told you about a job to do? Well, now is the time. - And he drew the theme of a circular letter over the readings to then dispatch it to the houses in the beginning of the school year. Don Lemoyne wrote, Don Bosco saw again and this long letter was sent to the colleges at the beginning of November "."
In collaboration, of course, styles merge while retaining clear individual characteristics. It does not seem difficult to trace in the 1884 letter motifs and shades present in previous letters that the manager of Lanzo had sent to his students, as can be deduced from some essays.
The first should have been written around 1868: "My dear children, the Divine Savior says that where your treasure is there is your heart. My dear ones, you are my treasure, the most precious treasure that the Lord has given me, treasure for the blood of Jesus Christ, a treasure of which one day I will have to take very close account. Therefore, although my heart is still far away in your midst and in Holy Mass in my prayers in my occupations, I remember you all the time and I long for the moment in which I will be able to see your angels again and continue my mission to lead you to paradise " . '
Two more are from 1875. "Dear children, I do not know how to explain, an irresistible force that urges me to write to you, when for a few days I must stay away from you. I question my heart and my heart is not mute! The more I advance over the years, the more I feel I love you; to love you as a friend, a brother, a father.
17 MB XVII 194.
18 MB XVII 197. It is the Circular on readings in houses, signed by Don Bosco and dated from Turin November 1, 1884 - MB XVII 197-200.
19 This and the following letters are found in ASC 272 Lemoyne, in the correspondence envelope to family members.
And my affection is not that simple intimacy of people who live together, it is something more alive, than a bully; it is a condition for me to exist. In the affection, in the correspondence, in the obedience of those, that the Lord in his goodness granted me to call children, I find every happiness, every interest, all my wealth, after God and Mary ».
«Dear my children! I told you that you are my crown, my happiness, my hope ».
In the spring of 1884 - precisely from April 14 to May 14 - Don Bosco was in Rome, plagued by financial problems, relating to the expensive construction of the church of the Sacred Heart at the Castro Pretorio, and committed to obtaining a reassuring state for his religious society juridical-canonical. His concern, which has been with him for several years, seems to be accentuated by the need to give stability and unity to the structures and spirit that informs them, in the clear awareness of the growing precariousness of his state of health.
he said that we should not flatter ourselves much about his life; inasmuch as, he added, having regard to the labors sustained, Don Bosco can now be considered 100 years old, although he does not yet count 70. Let us therefore pray with a big heart, and those, who by nature and weakness should succumb, live in that place many years to our help and comfort by grace and by virtue of the omnipotence of God ".21
20 With reference to the first months of 1884 until the return from Rome the biographical Memoirs abound with news about the sometimes alarming health conditions of Don Bosco: see MB XVII 21, 22, 23-24, 26, 27, 29-32, 34-35, 36, 38, 40, 42, 56-58, 65, 80, 83-84, 88, 89, 105, 119, 121, 122; and confirmations are given for the following months: MB XVII 204-207, 458-459.
21 BS 8 (1884) n. 4, April, p. 58.
Don Bosco himself gives discrete but significant confirmation in his correspondence. "My health is not bad, but it's not very good. I'm always very tired. "" "My health is a little better, but I really need prayers." «My health is being stenterellando; I hope to be able to reverently personally as soon as possible and be able to comfort myself somewhat. "24" The SV will give pity to a half-blind person who writes "." ».26
At the same time, a marked emotionality emerges that frequently leads him to merge the nostalgic memories of the past with lively divinations of the future. "Dreams" multiply while those who accompany it assure: "Our beloved Father does not know how to give speech without remembering the heroic times of the Oratory". "Together with the great theme of" salvation "the appeal to" method "To style, to the" preventive system ": love, confidence, familiarity, friendship;" it often happens that young people are less guilty of what one believes, as experience shows, "he warned in the last meeting of the III General Chapter, 7 September 1883. And on 25 April 1884 his reply to a journalist questioning him about his "educational system" appeared in the Journal de Rome: "Il est très simple. I leave it to children to do what they like best. Talent consists in discovering in children the germs of their good dispositions, and in applying them to develop them.
22 Lett. To the co. Bonmartini, from Turin, 4.2.1884 - E IV 253.
23 Returning from France, letter to. Berto da Sampierdarena, 6.4.1884 - E IV 255.
24 From Rome on 3 May 1884 to the archbishop of Turin, card. Alimonda - E IV 259.
23 From Rome to the Hon. Paolo Boselli 6 May 1884 - E IV 259.
20 Speech to the Cooperators and Cooperators of Turin, May 23 - BS 8 (1884), n. 7, July, p. 95. At the meeting with the former lay students of 13 July 1884, one of their representatives, prof. Germano says: "I remember ancient times, I think of the present time: I look at Don Bosco, and my heart is squeezed, for ineffable tenderness. How much has changed from what we knew as children! His person sags, his hair whitens and his step is slow and faltering. The Lord still keeps away that day on which he will have to receive the reward of so many of his labors endured for us. May he remain among his sons until he has celebrated his solemn golden mass. But the years pass inexorably (...) "(BS 8 (1884) n. 8, August, p. 112). Don Bosco replies: «(...
27 Lett. Of d. GB Lemoyne from Sampierdarena, 1 April 8, 1884 - ASC 272 Lemoyne.
Since everyone loves to do only what he knows he can do, I rigorously apply this principle, and my students all work, not only with activity, but with love. "
The letter therefore arises in a particularly favorable "context". As regards, then, the immediate circumstances of the conception, communication, editing and control of the contents, some information is extremely illuminating, which E. Celia collects from the direct witness, d. GB Lemoyne.
«At other times Don Bosco in Rome visited many people; but in 1884 both for the difficulty of walking and for the uncomfortable survivors he had to limit his visits very much "." "At the end of the days his poor head was so tired, that often he could no longer stand to form and connect ideas; every evening he went out to breathe a breath of air, walking three quarters of an hour leaning on Don Lemoyne's arm "." "So many hardships aggravated by bitter sorrows, his physical inconveniences became more and more acute. He suffered from the liver and had an inflamed eye. On April 27, he suffered a fever, lasting three days. One night the sickness was so great that he was forced to abandon the bed; at certain times of the day the exhaustion prostrated him ".31
It is exactly the situation to which the "dream" refers, the next occasion of the genesis of the "letters".
But at this point the detailed analysis of the available documents is indispensable, which together with the information coming from other sources will allow to establish with sufficient reliability the authentic texts, their succession, the respective destination and the meaning of each one.
The edition of the letter in its two separate editions is made on the basis of manuscripts, typewritten documents or drafts existing at the ASC of Rome as well as printed editions of particular historical and literary authority.
28 MB XVII 85-86.
29 MB XVII 80.
30 MB XVII 83-84.
31 MB XVII 89.
It is not excluded that transcriptions, more or less faithful, of the original texts can be found in other Salesian archives, due to ancient novices or student clerics students of Don Giulio Barberis and Don Eugenio Bianchi or of their disciples in turn novice masters and formators of neosalesians between the two centuries. Nor can it be excluded that an accurate inventory of the material stored in the ASC may hold some surprises.
Those so far found - and which should include the most important - are preserved in three different positions: ASC 110 Cronachette; ASC 111 Dreams; ASC 131 Turin-Oratory.
In the description of the documents this order is followed: first the preparatory manuscripts are indicated (nn. 1-3); the documents pertaining to the long drafting are then described (nos. 4-7); finally, the original of the short editorial staff (n. 8) is reviewed.
1. A = ASC 111 Dreams-Lemoyne
The ms is a simple sheet of hand-use paper with light blue stripes of 209x268 mm size. Above the two pages are numbered in pencil 1 and 2. In the left margin of page 1 is written in blue crayon in a vertical sense: 1884.
The writing is in brown ink; it is of Don Lemoyne that fixes in fragmentary annotations, with scarce connections, elements used in the immediately following redactions.
From the comparison it appears that the fragments flow into both the document K and, through this, in the ms D; more precisely, in the short version (K) the content of the first page and half of the second one is entirely accepted; the first lines' of pag. 1 are confirmed only in this drafting.
There is no finding of A in B: the reference areas of A and B are different.
Contact points can be detected between the last six lines of the ms A and the mss C and D (lin. 129-131, 174-176, 204-206).
2. B = ASC 111 Dreams-Lemoyne
It is a double sheet of paper of the same size and quality as the previous ms A with an identical slight lining.
On the left side of page 1 a vertical line is drawn in pencil to form a 30 mm margin.
On the four pages a previous numbering in pencil appears erased, but it is still visible 3, 4, 5, 6 (the ms had been confused and merged with the following ms C).
He is autograph of Don Lemoyne, who seems to be attempting a first partial redaction of the letter in the long draft.
The text is written in the right half of the page; the left half is reserved for corrections and additions.
Through C the content of the ms B (largely similar to that of the ms C) flows into D. No immediate or averaged relationship exists between B and K (short editorial); in fact B moves in the area of reference to the Salesians and not to the young.
In this volume it will be reproduced in its entirety, indicating in the apparatus what Don Lemoyne cancels.
3. C = ASC 111 Dreams-Lemoyne
It is a file consisting of three double sheets inserted one into the other of the same format and identical lines of the two ms preceding A and B.32
The pages are numbered in pencil from 1 to 10; the last two are white and not numbered. The first page bears the indication in pencil at the top: 1884.
He is Fr Lemoyne's autograph. The text is written in the right half of the page; the left half is left free for any corrections or additions; they only appear on pages 2, 6 and 9.
Inc .: One of these evenings ... Exp .: ... write to you or my loved ones these lines.
The ms C uses the material of C, rewriting it in a better literary form and expanding it. In turn it reveals direct causal relationships with both the short editorial (K) and the long editorial (D). Its immediate influence is clearly visible in the first part of the ms K as to the elements that it has in common with the long drafting, from which it does not seem to depend in this first section. But above all, understanding the "dream" of the first night, the manuscript C covers for the overall content two thirds of the long draft. Instead for the parallel contents D seems rather to depend immediately on K than from C, which seems to be confirmed by the fact that in K there are hand corrections by Don Rua, which D presupposes and uses, and D presents variants proper to K, which D2 corrects.
4. D = ASC 111 Dreams-Lemoyne
It is a file made up of 7 double sheets inserted one into the other sewn with a rather resistant thread. The format is 270x380 mm.
32 It is worth bearing in mind that the ms K (short editorial) for young people has the identical characteristics of the mss A, B and C. Not so the ms D.
The first sheet that collects the others is a solid protocol paper, ruled and marginated on the left (37 mm.) And on the right (14 mm.). The other sheets are made of light hand-made paper with well-marked blue stripes, not marginated. The pages are not numbered; only at the top of page 3 the number 5 is indicated in pencil. The first page is white and in the upper left corner it is written in pencil: 1884. The second page is white. The third and fourth pages contain the text of the news story of which we said: Inc. Don Bosco in those nights ... Exp. Were removed from the house. At the end of the text there is the indication: Beam LXV p. 189 - 10 May 1884, from which it is clear that the ms is prepared in view of the collection of Documents. From page 5 on page 26 is the text of the letter. The pp. 27-28 are white. A p. 5 you notice a faded spot; on p. 6 in the left margin two purple ink spots.
The ms is all by don Lemoyne who writes in the right half of each page, reserving the left side for possible corrections or additions, which are actually found only on pp. 15 and 16.
We cannot exclude the hypothesis that the texts of the news and the letter were written at different times: more precisely, that the first protocol sheet is destined to collect a pre-existing file with the text of the letter.
In any case, ms D is to be considered the oldest of those known to contain the full text of the letter in the long draft; it could even be the original text of it.
It is the one offered in the edition, which reproduces it with absolute fidelity, except for some unacceptable enrichment of punctuation.
5. E = ASC 131 Turin-Oratory
It is a file consisting of five double protocol sheets sewn together with a total of 20 pages numbered in pencil. The last page is white. The paper is solid, ribbed and marginalized with light blue ink. It is manuscript.
It is a beautiful copy transcribed by Don Gioachino Berto in full page.
On the first page above it is written almost as a title: Dream in the form of Letter 10.5.1884 from Rome.
The ms E derives directly from D, of which it reports both the brief information of the chronicle and the full text of the letter in the long redaction: the historical news occupies the whole page. 1 and a small part of the second. It ends with the indications given by Don Lemoyne; only Fascio is corrected in Fascic. The text of the letter occupies the pp. 3-19.
In general, Berto's copy is more accurate than the original as regards the Italian punctuation and diction of certain archaic forms dear to Lemoyne: avea = had; faceano = did ...; however, there are also some omissions and errors, due to distraction.
The ms of Berto is the last faithful in all its substance to the original text of Lemoyne. It will be reflected in the printed edition of the letter that appeared in the Proceedings of the Superior Chapter of 1920 (in the apparatus with the acronym J).
6. J = printed in the "Acts of the Superior Chapter" (1920)
The edition of the letter in the long editorial published by Don Bartolomeo Fascie in the "Acts of the Superior Chapter" (1920, Year I, N. 2, August 24, pp. 40-48) follows the text ms of Don Berto (E ), with punctuation enrichment and some variant improvements.
7. F = ASC 111 Dreams-Lemoyne
The ms is a dossier made up of 5 double protocol sheets inserted one into the other and sewn with a rather solid thread; only the first sheet has the two pages detached for wear. The format is 208x311 mm. Hand use paper is striped with blue ink. The first page is not numbered, the second is white and not numbered. The numbering starts on page 3 with the number 2 and continues up to 17; the last two pages are white. On the first page in the left margin it is written vertically in light blue pastel, the same used for the numbering of the pages: 1884.
The news item occupies the first page; the text of the letter the pages numbered from 2 to 17.
It is a writing that wants to be calligraphic, but it becomes more hasty and less clear in the last pages. The amanuensis should be a young person, diligent, with a light and discreetly elegant touch; the ink is brown.
In the upper margin of the first page dedicated to the historical news Don Lemoyne adds with marked spelling and black ink: Head XXXI Dream: The ancient and the present oratory - Charity and familiarity that the Salesians must have with young people - Confessions and conduct of young people.
The handwritten text occupies the right half of the individual pages.
Transcription is accurate and improves formally - punctuation and lexical perfection - the MS D from which it evidently depends. It departs from this in some qualifying points with the systematic replacement of the term love with the more austere synonyms affection and charity. An intermediate ms has not been traced that allows to identify who introduced these modifications, that Don Lemoyne himself accepts in Documents (text in drafts G) and d. Celia re-edited with marginal variants in the Biographical Memoirs (H) and in the Epistolary (I).
The MS E remains out of the game and will be recovered, as has been said, only in 1920, when the General School Councilor, Fr Bartolomeo Fascie, is responsible for its publication in the Proceedings of the Chapter (= Council) Superior of the Salesian Society.
8. K = ASC 131 Torino-Oratorio
The ms consists of two double sheets inserted one into the other to form a dossier of 4 sheets numbered by the editor from 1 to 4, of 8 pages numbered in pencil by another hand from 2 to 7. Dimensions, quality, lines of the paper are identical to those of ms A, B, C. The ink is darkly faded (diluted).
He is autograph of Don Lemoyne, amanuensis-editor.
With another spelling - by Don Rua - additions are made, which in the dialogues indicate the interlocutors: I (= Don Bosco), a. (= pupil), V. (= Valfrè). They are shown in the apparatus.
At the end is the autograph signature of Don Bosco.
It is with all certainty the letter sent from Rome on 12 May and read by Don Rua to the young people of Turin-Valdocco.
It is to be presumed that the correspondence editor ignores it.
Examination of the documents makes it possible to localize the drawing up of the two editorials, which is brief, for young people, and a long period reserved for Salesian educators. This, however, supposes a time of redaction following the other manuscripts A, B, C, K, which for the material elements betray a great chronological proximity. The process of the short letter, addressed directly to young people, is instead linear and rapid.
It is therefore appropriate to try to identify the various phases of the composition of the texts, referring in principle to the information provided by the direct witness, Don Giovanni Battista Lemoyne. "
33 On this line the imaginative reconstruction by E. Celia should be rectified: "On 6 May he had Don Rua write:" Don Bosco is preparing a letter he intends to send to the young, in which he means many beautiful things to his beloved children ". The letter was sent on 10 May; but Don Rua, not believing it convenient to read it all in public, asked him to send him a copy that could go for the students. Don Lemoyne extracted for them the parts that did not concern the superiors. The reading made by Don Rua in the evening after the prayers was listened to by the young with trembling, especially because the Saint said he had known the state of many consciences. After the return it was a procession of boys to his room to know how he had seen them "(MB XVII 107).
About the "nights in which (Don Bosco) had found himself ill" Don Lemoyne transcribed in the Documents: "April 27th. D. Bosco has a fever and this lasts for three days. Last night he had such discomfort that he had to get out of bed. His physique is greatly influenced by the continuous opposition that arises against the lottery and against the granting of privileges. "34 In a letter to Fr Rua the following day he confirms:" Among a lot of letters to take care of, I steal some time to let you know new of D. Bosco. It is not bad health, but it is already two mornings that the fever has returned "."
In these conditions of suffering, memories, intuitions and family concerns emerge with increased arrogance, which will then find a more articulate expression in the story to the secretary. The time to tell, to develop, to organize abounded. It is true that Don Bosco did not lack work; but the health conditions and the attentions of the fraternal collaborator forced him to make consistent stops every day with the possibility of significant moments of relaxation and peaceful family conversation.
In the various compositional phases and in the various drafts there is never a trace of Don Bosco's redactional intervention: his (if not imitated) is only the signature that closes the short form.
But the immediate echo of what Don Bosco was saying can be found at least in part in the quick notes given by Lemoyne to ms A and, to a greater extent, in the first elaboration of the characteristic elements of the letter to the Salesians, contained already in ms B and resumed and expanded in the ms C. All three are then used by Lemoyne in the drafting of the letter to the young, the ms K, and later that for the Salesians.
Instead, it is difficult to establish the time and location of the composition of the long editorial staff (ms D) which was then transmitted handwritten and printed, with significant variations. It may have been laid out later at Valdocco. "
34 Documenti, vol., XXVII, pp. 158-159.
35 Lett. To Fr Rua 28 April 1884, ASC 9126 Rua - Lemoyne GB Cf. P. BRAIDO and R. ARENAL LLATA, Fr Giovanni Battista Lemoyne through 20 letters to Fr Michele Rua, in "Salesian Historical Researches" 7 (1988) , p. 151.
36 It should be borne in mind that the ms K, unlike the ms D, has the same characteristics (paper, stripes, ink) of the mss A, B and C.
With great probability, Lemoyne is writing the letter for the young, arriving at the M K, when on May 6 he writes to Fr Rua in the following terms: «5 Finally, I announce to you that D. Bosco is preparing a letter he intends to send to the young people , in which it means so many beautiful things to its beloved children "."
From a global consideration, which seems to be confirmed by what happens at Valdocco in the weeks immediately following, it seems more than probable that of the two texts, dated May 10, 1884, the one that contains the short editorial has been sent to Turin, as it seems to be possible to obtain from the two letters from Fr Lemoyne to Fr Rua, one from Rome on 12 May (antivigilia of the departure from Rome of Don Bosco and his secretary), the other from Florence on the 15th. In the first Fr Lemoyne writes: "I send you a letter that Don Bosco sends to all his sons in the Oratory. You yourself will be pleased to read it in the evening after the orations and if you could not charge D. Lazzero. This is what Don Bosco wants and before you read it to the young, try to give her a look and change what I thought good to change, and attenuate a few sentences if I believed it too strong. If you find us inappropriately forgive me and correct because I spent a whole night laying it down. "" From Florence on the 15th he wrote again to Fr Rua: "Today we have arrived in Florence (...). With this I conclude my correspondence with you , if nothing will happen again. I hope that at this time you will have received and read to the young the letter addressed to them by Don Bosco "."
Concerns and interests that are particularly accentuated at Valdocco also seem to refer to the short form in the weeks and months following the return of Don Boscò from Rome. The problem of the "ordering" of the Oratory and, above all of the disciplinary, moral and religious "reform" of the youth community, with special attention to the student component, which fed the prevailing hopes of new "vocations", ecclesiastical and Salesian, recurs strongly.
37 Lett. to Don Rua 6 Maggio 1884, ASC 9126 Rua - Lemoyne; Cf. P. BRAIDO and R. ARENAL LLATA, art. cit., p. 154.
38 Lett. To Fr Rua of 12 May 1884, ibid. See P. BRAIDO and R. ARENAL LLATA, art. cit., p. 157. At the bottom of the letter the diligent Fr Lemoyne adds the warning: "Keep the letter of Don Bosco to put it in the archive". It is to be believed it is the MS K which we possess.
39Lett. to Don Rua from May 15, 1884, ibid. Cfr. P. BRAIDO and R. ARENAL LLATA, art. cit., p, 157.
From the Minutes of the meetings of the Chapter [= Council] Superior of the Salesian Society and from an inquiry promoted by the Salesians of Turin-Valdocco there is an image no less pessimistic than the prevailing climate (lack of confidence, climate of suspicion, deficiencies in the direction and in assistance), which is more exclusively outlined in the short letter. Instead, the explicit positive message of love, proclaimed with exceptional rhetorical warmth in the long draft is more weakly present.
Still to the public reading to the youngsters of the letter addressed to them refer to the information delivered to the Documents, further on, to the ch. XXX-VIII, "... wonderful effects of Don Bosco's last dream. (...) June 13th. - The dream made by D. Bosco in Rome brings its consequences. Throughout the past days, Don Bosco gave many young people an audience in the evening. Yesterday, however, many Corpus Christi days went to his room to talk to him about his vocation ».4th
As for the tradition and the diffusion of the letter in the two editions the relative events can be traced back to the following meager data, in many aspects, characteristic:
1) The short editorial, intended for young people, has been handwritten in the original document kept in the archive and in copies contained in some notebooks of novices and novice trainers.
2) As a short editorial, however, a transcription of the long form, in which it appears placed between brackets and therefore, ideally excluded the central body (lin. 82-206: acc. God); it appears responsible, it is not known on what foundation, the novice master don Giulio Barberis, followed by his immediate collaborator and successor, don Eugenio Bianchi: they are headed by some few transcripts of novices or young clerics.
3) It is, instead, transmitted in a certain number of manuscripts and by printing the long form, in two "versions": a) the most widespread, corresponding to the ms F, endorsed by Don Ceria in the Biographical Memoirs and in the Letters, and taken from the text of the Constitutions and Regulations of the Salesian Society and of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians of 1972; b) the less familiar one, but closer to the original manuscripts of Don Lemoyne and of Don Berto, (ms D and E), then accepted in the Acts of the Chapter (= Council) Superior of 1920 and by d. Bartolomeo Fascie in his anthology of 1927. The two versions carry numerically limited, but qualitatively significant variants.
40 Documents, vol. XXVII, p. 274.
In the most typical places the second (doc. E) gives space to the term love, which the first (doc. E MB, Ep) replaces with the terms affection and charity; in the second, Don Bosco's interlocutor in the dream sometimes addresses his former educator with your confidentiality, while the former, already accepted by Father Lemoyne himself in Documents, always adopts the most respectful and courtly one; this, moreover, reveals some more logical passage: for example to the most approximate psychological succession could and knew it replaces the more consequential one known and could.
/ \I i
Monday night fol • 1
Seen Buzzetti. In the middle I asked But
the young people now or those of
the past seemed better to you I replied - the difference between these and those is
that these have not too much confidence in the confessional
your advice but in particular in the things
The number of good young people it is great
But between the ancients and the moderns there is a
notable difference in ancient times their heart was all open
to the Superiors whom they loved and
presently obeyed the Superiors are considered as
feared superiors etc. therefore if we want to make
a single heart and a single soul for
Jesus' sake we must break the fatal
barrier of distrust and enter into it
cordial confidence Hence the obedience
that guides the pupil as the mother guides
a young child etc. etc. We are not talking about the
frequent confessions and communion, but
the stability of the aims, etc. are radically lacking.
I felt tired. 2
Have you anything else to tell me? What a special warning
- let everyone remember that they are children of Mary. Help
that she gathered them here. So also the peace of the heart,
therefore love for one another. May hearts open,
let a single heart be made and soul alone as in the early days.
And will we succeed?
Yes, as long as young and old want to make a
foil for the Celestial Mother and may
some young people be ready to suffer something but in these few I saw things that
have deeply embittered my heart. I don't want to
put them on paper but I want to expose them to everyone they refer to.
Here I tell you only that it is time to pray and take
firm resolutions, to propose not with words but with deeds
and to show that the Comolos, the Savio Dominicos, the Besuccos
the Saccardis, still live among us.
Just a young man enter a Salesian house and taken just
under special protection of Mary Help of SS
(That we do a very strict duty of conscience to refer
to Superiors all those things which the Clerics in any
way know to be offended by the Lord
(Of the jealousy that everybody would like loved by the
Youngsters except for all the other superior
2. Ms B
Acronyms: B = original editing by Don Lemoyne
B2 and B3 = subsequent interventions of the same Don Lemoyne
- Because so much boredom and a lot of listlessness. fol. 1
- I saw so much listlessness that it is from here that the coldness in the Sacraments comes, the neglect of the practices of piety especially in the Church, the willingness to stay unwillingly in a place where providence fills them
5 of every benefit, hence the ingratitude, the secretaries, the murmurs, with all the other deplorable consequences.
- I see I understand, I mean, but how can young people be revived so that they can resume the ancient liveliness, joy, expansion? - With love!
10 - Love? But aren't my young people loved enough? You know if I love my young people. You know how much I suffered, I tolerated. How many hardships, how many humiliations, how many oppositions I had to meet and suffer for them.
- I'm not talking about you!
15 - Whose then? Of those who take my place? Do not see how they are martyrs of work, they study, watch, consume, day and night.
- I see everything I know, but that's not all here. THE
- What is missing? fol. 2
20 - That young people are not only loved but they themselves know they are loved.
- But don't they have eyes on their heads? They do not see house, bread, profit, career etc. schools. - No this is not enough.
1 Because ... listlessness B of the B2 7 I see B of the B2 18 everything 'B of the B2 20 know] see B of the B2 know emend sl B2 26 being loved] they see B of the B2 being loved emend sl B2
25 - What does it take then?
- That being loved in those things that they like, they learn to see love in those things that naturally they like little, and they learn to do with love.
- Explain yourself.
- The Divine Savior became small with the little ones and brought our 30 infirmities.
- I do not understand.
- Watch the young!
I remarked: "And what's special to see?"
- Such as? so much so that you are educating young people and do not understand. Where are your Salesians 35?
- I looked and saw etc. (like the other sheet)
And the other resumed: when you placed yourself in the midst of the young in the past was it so?
fol. 3 - Oh then a joy was a joy, a desire to speak, a being anxious to hear my words etc. But now I can't anymore. He does not see how visits, my health, etc.
- I understand that you can't but why don't your Salesians make you your imitators? Why don't you command, don't insist, that you treat young people the same way you treat them? 45
- I speak and I mop, but understand well that even the masters and assistants are tired from teaching, they no longer feel like doing the hard work of the past, etc.
- And therefore leaving out the less, they lose the most; and this is more their labors! 50
- So which is the least. - Familiarity!
If this is not the case, stay away from the Clerics. What a rule requires, and equal to iron, when when [... the exterior. And this without heart will make enemies. 55
Jealousy arises between the superior and the superior. It follows that in order not to be unusual, those who do would not do. Human respect.
Love of your own comforts. Special friendships.
- And yet I see that going ahead will regulate them and will dominate the paternal system. 60
30 is done] has some B of the B2 has made emend B2 40-52 Oh then ... familiarity B of the B2 56-58 It ... details add mrg sin B2
- The familiarity that Jesus Christ made himself small for the little ones and endured our infirmities.
The teacher in the chair is a teacher, but in recreation he becomes fol. 4 brother. If it is preached it is an office of duty, a word in recreation is the word of one who gives a sign. How many conversions do not happen from one word of yours in
Who is loved gets everything because especially in young people
This puts an electric current between young people and Superiors.
Their needs are known, their flaws are seen.
70 Knowing themselves loved, they reveal their heart.
Familiarity ... B sign of B2 65-66 Quante..in add mrg sin B2 of B3
67-70 Who ... heart B of B2
3. Ms 100
Acronyms: C = original drafting of Don Lemoyne
C2 = successive interventions of the same Don Lemoyne
fol. 1r One of these evenings I was preparing to go to rest and had begun to recite the prayers that my good mother taught me. While he prayed in this way, I was assailed by a distraction or sleep, and it seemed to me that two of the ancient youths of the Oratory appeared before me. One of these two approached me and greeted me affectionately. I looked at him and those dissections: - Do you know D. Bosco?
- Yes, I know you.
- Do you still remember me?
- About you and others: You are Valfrè, and you were in the Oratory before 1860.
- Say! Do you want to see the young people who were in the Oratory in my time?
- Yes let me see: This will give me great pleasure.
And Valfrè showed me all the young men with the same features and glue 15
foi. iv stature and age of that time. I felt like I was in the Oratory in recreation time. It was a scene all of life, motion, joy. Who was running, who was jumping, who was jumping. Here he played for the frog, for the ball. In one place a group of young people was gathered that hung from the lip of a Cleric who told a small letter. In another place a 20 priest among other boys and made them play at the donkey flies. People sang and laughed everywhere, and everywhere the Clerics and priests were the soul of fun and the young people around them shouted cheerfully.
I was enchanted by this spectacle and Valfrè told me: - See: the familiarity brings love and love produces confidence.
At that moment the other ancient pupil of the Oratory approached me and said to me: - Don Bosco now wants to see the young people who are currently in the Oratory?
- Yup! let me see them: I replied -. 30
28 learn about add mrg sin C2
And it showed them to me. I saw the oratory and all the young people who were recreationists. No more songs! no longer shouts of joy, no longer that fol. 2r-moto, that life as in the first scene. Some isolated screams could be heard, but in general the air spread like a confused murmur and in the face and in the acts of the young people one read exhaustion, boredom, musorni, distrust. There was no lack of young people who ran around, stirred up, with blissful light-heartedness, but many saw them alone leaning on the pillars, many sitting at the bottom of the stairs and up the corridors to escape recreation; others stroll slowly, speaking softly between themselves and giving suspicious or malignant glances around; many to play but with a listlessness of those who do not find taste or entertainment.
- Have you seen your youth? - That old student told me.
- I see them I answered.
45 - How different they are from what we once were.
- Unfortunately! How much unwillingness in this recreation.
- And from here comes the coldness of so many in approaching the Sacraments, the neglect of the practices of piety especially in the Church; to be unwilling to stay in a place where Divine Providence foi. 2v
50 Fills them with all good for the body, for the soul, for the intellect: hence the non-correspondence that many make to their vocation; hence the ingratitudes towards the Superiors; hence the secretarys the murmurs with all the other deplorable consequences.
- I see; I mean, I replied: "But how can these dear young people of mine be revived so that they may resume their ancient liveliness, their joyful expansion?
- With Love!
- Love? But aren't my young people loved enough? You know if I love my young boys. You know how much I suffered and tolerated for
60 well 40 years and I tolerate and still suffer for them. How many hardships, how many humiliations, how many oppositions, to give bread, house, masters, to them and especially for the health of their souls. I did what I knew and could for those who form the affection of my whole life.
- I'm not talking about you!
65 - Whose then? Of those who! do they take my place? Da - fol. 3r - Directors, Prefects, Masters, Assistants? Don't you see how they are martyrs of study and work?
32 più2 add sl Cz
How do they spend their youthful years for those who entrusted them with Divine Providence?
- I see; I know; but this is not enough: we lack the best.
- What is missing then? 70
- That young people are not only loved but that they themselves know they are loved.
- But don't they have eyes on their heads? Don't they have the light of intelligence? Do they not see that what is done for them is all for their love? 75
- No this is not enough.
- What does it take, then?
- That being loved in those things that they like by participating in their infantile inclinations, they learn to see love in those things that naturally they do not like; what is the discipline, lo - 80 fol. 3v - study, and the mortification of oneself and these things I learn to do with love.
- Explain yourself better!
- The Divine Savior became small with the little ones and brought our infirmities. 85
- I do not understand well.
- Watch the young!
I watched and then replied: "And what's special to see?"
- Such as? Sonp so many years that you go educating the young and not ca-90? Look! Where are your Salesians?
I observed and saw that among the young there were very few priests and clerics who took part in their entertainment. Most of them walked among themselves or not caring about young people or watching them so far. 95
Then that friend resumed: In the ancient times of the oratory you were not always among young people and especially at their recreations?
68 post Providence add How do you watch day and night, how do you suffer from cold and heat so that you can really say sacrificed for their students? C del e 84-86 The Divin ... bene add mrg sin C '
- Certainly and then everything was joy for me and in them an impulse in wanting to speak to me and a lively anxiety to hear my words and put them into practice. But now you see how the hearings, the multiplied business, my health prevent me.
- All right but if you can't because your Salesians don't make yours immitators? Because I do not insist and do not command that we treat the boys. 4r 105 rooms the same way you treated them?
- I speak I mop; but you understand well that I too see how the masters are tired from schooling and unfortunately they no longer feel they are doing the labors of the past.
- And therefore neglecting the less I lose the most and this is their 110 labors. May they love what young people like and young people will love what the Superiors like, and in this way their work will be easier and lighter.
- What, then, do I have to recommend to my Salesians?
- Familiarity with young people especially in recreation. Without
115 love is not demonstrated, and without this demonstration there can be no confidence. Anyone who wants to be loved must show that he loves. Jesus Christ became small with the little ones and brought our infirmities. Here is the model of familiarity. The teacher seen only in the chair is a teacher, but if he goes to recreation with the young bec
120 does respected brother. If one is only seen preaching from the pulp, one will say fol. 4v which does neither more nor less of its duty, but if it says a word in recreation it is the word of one who loves. How many conversions did not happen for one word of yours suddenly arrived in the ear of a young man while he was having fun! Who knows he is loved, loves, and who he loves
125 to get everything especially from young people. This confidence puts an electric current between the young and the Superiors. Hearts open: they know their needs, they reveal their defects. This love makes us endure even the hardships, troubles, ingratitudes, troubles, faults and negligence of youngsters, so that everything has to
130 not the vainglory, not the revenge of one's own offended love, not the jealousy of a feared preponderance of authority of others but nothing but the glory of God, the health of souls with the example of Jesus Christ. Do you know why today's oratory is different from what it used to be? Because we want to replace love with the coldness of a regulation; because your parents turn away from the observance of those rules of education that you have dictated to them, because the system of prevention - fol. 5r - lovingly the disorders go little by little replacing the less heavy and brighter system for those in charge; ban laws and punish offenders.
123 in the ear] in heart C in the ear Torr C '
And this necessarily happens if there is no familiarity. If, therefore, we want the oratory to return to its ancient happiness, the ancient system of being all to all, fathers of young people, tolerant until the charity permits, the defects of their youthful age, taking away distances, loving with them all that they love. Then the hearts will no longer be closed and there will no longer be secretions that kill. 145
- And what is the principal means of treating similar familiarity and similar love and confidence?
- The exact observance of the rules you have given.
- And nothing else?
- A better dish in a lunch is that of good wax. 150
- And what other advice do you give me for the good progress of the house?
- Nothing but this: Familiarity brings love and love
it brings confidence and the young then all reveal themselves without fear, to the fol. 5v masters to assistants to the Supe! Flowers. They become frank in confession
and out of confession and they are docile to all that they command Co-155 from whom they are sure to be loved.
While the other finished speaking I continued to observe with regret that recreation and gradually I felt oppressed by great fatigue. This oppression came to the point that I was shaken because I could no longer resist. I came. He was standing near the bed. The swollen legs hurt me and could no longer stand upright. The hour was very late. So I went off to bed determined to write to you or my loved ones these lines.
4. Ms K - Letter to the youth of the Oratory of Turin-Valdocco
Acronyms: K = original drafting of Don Lemoyne
K2 = interventions by Don Lemoyne on his own text
R = successive interventions by Fr Rua
S = the signature: Sac. Gio. Bosco
Rome 10 May 1884 fot. 1r
My dear children in Jesus Christ.
Near or far I always think of you. Only one is my desire; that of seeing you happy in time and in eternity. This thought, this desire resolved me to write you this letter. I feel, my dear friends, the weight of my distance from you and not seeing you and not feeling you cause me pain as you cannot imagine. Therefore I would have liked to write these lines a week ago; but the continuous occupations prevented me. However, although my return is a few days away, I want to anticipate my coming to you at least by letter, not being able to do so in person. They are the words of those who love you tenderly in Jesus Christ and have the duty to speak to you with the freedom of a father. And you will let me, isn't it? and you will pay attention to me and put into practice what I am to tell you.
15 I stated that you are the one and continuous thought of my mind. Now then in one of the last few nights I had retired to my room and while he was preparing me to go to rest, he had begun to recite the prayers that my good mother taught me. At that time I do not know whether I was taken by sleep, or taken from me by one of the strictures, it seemed to me that two of the ancient youths of the Oratory appeared before me. One of these two approached me, and greeting me affectionately, he said to me:
- Or does Don Bosco know me?
"Yes, I know you," I replied.
25 - And do you still remember me? He added.
- About you and everyone else. You are Valfrè, and you were I in the Oratorio foL lv before 1870.
24 ante Yes add Io R 25 ante And yes add V. R 26 ante Of you add Io R
- Say! continued Valfrè, does he want to see the young people who were in the Oratory in my time?
- Yes, let me see them, I answered; this will cause me great pleasure. 30
And Valfrè showed me all the young people with the same features and the height and age of that time. I felt like I was in the old Oratory at recreation time. It was a whole life scene, all motion, all joy. Who was running, who was jumping, who was jumping. Here he played at the frog, there in bararotta, and at the ball. In one place a group of young people had gathered, hanging from the lip of a priest who told a story. In another place a cleric who in the midst of other young men played at the donkey flies and crafts. People sang, they laughed everywhere and everywhere clerics and priests, and around them young people who were shouting happily. It was clear that the greatest cordiality reigned between young people and superiors. I was enchanted by this show and Valfrè told me: - Veda: familiarity brings love,
At that moment my other old student approached me, who had a white beard and said to me: - D. Bosco now wants to know and see the young people who are currently in the Oratory?
- Yes, I replied; since it is already a month that I no longer see them -.
And he pointed them out to me. I saw the Oratory and all of you doing recreation. But he no longer heard shouts and cries, he no longer saw that motion, that life as in the first scene. In the deeds and in the faces of many of you 50 you read an exhaustion, a boredom, a musoneria, a distrust that filled my heart. I saw it is true that many who ran, played, waved themselves with blissful carelessness, but others were not few
fol. I saw the single stars leaning against the pillars in the grip of discouraging thoughts; others on the stairs and in the corridors to escape the recreation; others walk slowly in groups talking quietly to each other giving around suspicious and malign glances: even among those who were playing there were some so listless, who made them see clearly how they did not find pleasure in amusements. Rare among the young the Clerics and priests could be seen. Young valleys were studiously trying to distance themselves from the masters and from the Superiors. The Superiors were no longer the soul of recreations.
At that time I asked my friend with a white beard: "Do the young people of today or those of the past look better?"
30 ante Yes add Io R
He replied: - The number of good young people in the present 65 is very large in the Oratory.
- But why so much difference between the youth of the past and the youth of now?
- Cause of so much diversity it is that a certain number of young people
70 has no confidence in the Superiors. Formerly the hearts were all open to the Superiors, whom the young loved and readily obeyed. Do you remember those beautiful years when you, Mr. D. Bosco, could always spend time with us? It was a blaze of paradise, and we had no secrets for her. But now the Superiors are considered as Superiors, and
75 no longer as fathers, brothers and friends; therefore they are feared and unloved. Therefore if we want to make a single heart and a single soul for Jesus' sake, we must break the fatal barrier of distrust, and submerge in it cordial confidence. Therefore, obedience should guide the pupil as the mother guides her child. Then peace and ancient joy will reign in the Oratory.
- So how do you go about breaking this barrier?
- To you and yours I say; Jesus Christ made himself small with little fol. 2v and brought our miseries. It did not break the already cracked barrel, nor did it extinguish the smoky wick. Here is your model.
85 - And to young people?
- That they recognize how much the Superiors, the masters, the assistants struggle and study for their love, because if it were not for their good they would not submit to so many sacrifices; that humility is remembered as the source of all tranquility; who know how to bear the defects
90 of others because perfection is not found in the world, but this is only in paradise; let them cease from murmuring because these cool hearts; and above all that they try to live in the Holy Grace of God. Whoever does not have peace with God, has no peace with himself, has no peace with others.
95 - And then you tell me that you are among my young people of those who do not have peace with God?
- This is the first cause of the bad mood, among the others that you know, to which you must remedy, and which does not do now what I tell you. In fact: he does not distrust anyone who has secrets to keep, if not those who fear that these secrets will come to know each other, because he knows that he would return shame and disgrace to them.
67 ante Ma add Io R 69 ante Cause add a. R 81 ante As add Io R 82 ante To you add a. R 85 ante E ai add Io R 86 ante Che add a. R 95 ante And you add Io R 97 ante This add a. R
At the same time, if the heart does not have the peace of God it remains anguished, restless, intolerant of obedience, irritated by nothing, it seems to him that everything goes wrong, and because it has no love, he judges that the Superiors do not love him.
- And yet, my dear, you do not see how many confessions and communions there are in the Oratory!
- It is true that the frequency of the Confessions is great, but what is radically lacking in so many young people who confess is that it is
fol. Flexibility in propositions. The same deficiencies, the same occasions, the same habits, the same disobediences, the same negligence in duties are confessed. This goes on for months and months. They are confessions that are worth little or nothing; so they don't bring peace, and if a young man were called to that court at God's court it would be a serious business.
- And there are many of them in the Oratory? 115
- Few compared to the large number of young people in the house: Watch them! - And pointed them out to me.
I looked; and one by one I saw those young people. But in these few I saw things that have profoundly embittered my heart. I don't want to put them on paper, but when I get back I want to show them at 120 each they refer to. Here I will only tell you that it is time to pray, and to take firm resolutions; to propose not with words but with deeds and to show that the Comollo, the Savio Domenico, and the Besucco, and the Saccardi still live among us.
Finally I asked my friend: "Do you have anything else to say to me?"
- He preaches to all great and small who always remember that they are children of Mary Help of Christians. That she gathered them here to love each other as brothers and to give glory to God and to her with their good conduct. May they remember that I am on the eve of the Feast of the Holy Mother and that with her help the barrier of distrust that the devil has been able to raise between young people and Superiors and of which he knows how to benefit for the ruin of certain souls must fall.
While the friend spoke I gradually felt a tiredness growing in me that oppressed me. As I could no longer resist, I was shaken and found myself.
fol. 3v I found myself standing by the bed. My legs were so swollen and they hurt me so much that I couldn't stand upright. The hour was very late and I therefore went to bed, resolved to write to you or my dear sons, these lines. Many other very important things that I saw, I would still like to tell you, but time and convenience do not allow it.
105 ante And yet add Io R 107 ante It is true add a. R 115 ante E by add Io R
116 ante Few add a. R 127 ante Preaches add a. R
I conclude. Do you know what this poor old man who consummated his life for his dear young men wants from you? Nothing else except, given the due proportions, the happy days of the ancient return
145 Oratory. The days of Christian love and trust between the young and the Superiors; the days of the spirit of condescension and endurance for the sake of Jesus of one towards the others; the days of open hearts with all simplicity and candor; the days of charity and true joy for all. I need you to console me by giving me hope
150 and the promise that you will do all that I desire for the sake of your souls. You do not know enough about how fortunate it is for you to have been admitted to the Oratory. Before God I protest: It is enough for a young man to enter a Salesian house so that the Blessed Virgin may take him immediately under his special protection.
155 So let's all get along. The charity of those who command, the charity of those who obey let the Spirit of St. Francis de Sales reign among us. O my dear children, the time is approaching when I must detach myself from you and depart for my Eternity; (At this point Don Bosco suspended to dictate; his eyes were filled with tears, not with regret, but with ineffable tenderness that leaked out of his gaze and the sound of his voice. After a few moments he continued.) So I long for I leave you, or priests, or Clerics, or dear young people, for that fol. 4r way of the Lord in which he himself desires you. To this end, the Holy Father whom I saw on Friday 9th of May, sends his blessing to you wholeheartedly. The day of the feast of Mary Help of Christians I will be with you before the effigy of our most loving mother. I want this great festival to be celebrated with every solemnity and D. Lazzero and D. Marchisio are thinking of making us happy even in the refectory. The feast of Mary Help of Christians must be the prelude to the eternal feast which we must all celebrate together one day in paradise.
Your most affectionate friend in GC Sac. Gio. Bosco
155 who commands] those who command corr R 156 who obeys] those who must obey corr R 158 ante To this add sl Note from the Secretary. R 167-168 D. Lazzero ... to be] we are corr R 172 Sac. Gio. Bosco add S
5. Ms D - Letter to the Salesian community of the Oratory of Turin-Valdocco
Acronyms: D = original drafting of Don Lemoyne
D2 = interventions by Don Lemoyne on his own text
E = transcription by Don Berto
E2 = interventions by Don Berto in his own manuscript
F = transcription of amanuensis
F2 = interventions by the same amanuensis on his own text
G = text contained in Documents XXVII, 221-228
H = text published in MB 17, 107-114
I = text published in E 4, 261-269
J = text published in "Acts of the Superior Chapter" (1920)
fol. 1 r Rome, 10 May 1884
My dear children in Jesus C.
Near or far I always think of you. Only one is my desire: to see you happy in time and in eternity. This thought, this desire resolved me to write you this letter. I feel, my dear friends, the weight of my distance from you and not seeing you and not feeling you cause me pain as you cannot imagine. Therefore I would have liked to write these lines a week ago, but the continuous occupations prevented me. However, although a few days are missing on my return, I want to anticipate my coming among you at least 10 by letter, not being able to do so in person. They are the words of those who love you tenderly in / Jesus Christ and have a duty to speak to you with the freedom of a father. And you will let me, won't you? And you will pay attention to me and put into practice what I am to tell you.
fol. lv I stated that you are the only and continuous thought of my mind.
6 from you om EJ 8 to write] to write to you EJ 12-13 with the freedom of] freely as EJ 14 that which] as EJ
3-5 "Next Thursday [February 15, 1872] God willing I will be in Turin. I feel a serious need to go there. I live here with my body, but my heart, my thoughts and my words are always in the Oratory among you. This is a weakness but I cannot overcome it "- Don Bosco to Fr Rua, from Alassio 9.2.72, E II 193. -" Soon I will be with you again, with you who are the object of my thoughts and of my concerns, with you who are the masters of my heart »- Don Bosco to the young students of Valdocco (Turin) from Rome on 7.3.1874 - E II 361-362.
Now then in one of the last few nights I had retired to my room, and while he was preparing me to go to sleep he had begun to recite the prayers that my good mother taught me. At that moment I do not know if I was taken by sleep or taken away from me by a distraction, it seemed to me that two of the ancient youths of the Oratory appeared before me.
One of these two approached me and greeted me affectionately and said: - O D. Bosco! He knows me?
- Yes, I know you: I answered.
25 - And do you still remember me? the man added.
- About you and everyone else. You are Valfrè, and you were in the Oratory before 1870.
- Say! continued Valfrè, does he want to see the young people who were in the Oratory in my time?
30 - Yes let me see them, I answered; this will cause me great pleasure.
And Valfrè showed me his son, all with the same features and fol. 2rature and age of that time. I seemed to be in the ancient oratory at recreation time. It was a whole life scene, all motion, all joy. Who was running, who was jumping, who was jumping. Here you join
35 quarry to the frog, there to bararotta and to the ball. In one place a group of young people had gathered, hanging from the lip of a priest who told a little story. In another place a cleric who in the midst of other young men played donkey flies and crafts. People sang, they laughed everywhere and everywhere clerics and priests and around them the joys
40 rooms that cackled cheerfully. It was clear that the greatest cordiality and confidence reigned among the young and the Superiors. I was enchanted at this show and Valfrè told me: - See: familiarity brings love, and love brings confidence.
25 added] added EJ 26 Valfrè] that man FGHI 30 Yes om EJ 31 Valfrè] he F 36 knot] crossroad J from the lip] from the lips EJ 38 young boys] young EJ 42 Valfrè] that man F
26 In all probability it is Ferdinando Valfrè, n. in Pinerolo in 1843, student at the Oratory from 1 May 1859 to July 1860 (Accounting registers, ms. autograph of Don Vittorio Alasonatti). The Valdocco registry also reports a Bartolomeo Valfrè, n. in Villafranca Piemonte on 22 December 1855, entered the Oratory as a student on 11 August 1866. A young Valfrè, seventeen years old, whom Don Bosco says is a relative of B. Sebastiano Valfrè, with good qualities and excellent disposition, appears already in a letter from the Holy educator to the Rosminian D. Giuseppe Fradelizio of June 5, 1849 (Em I 85).
42-47 "The Oratory was then a true family" - MB III 353. - "Until 1858, Don Bosco governed and directed the Oratory as a father rules his family, and young people did not feel that there was a difference between 'Oratory and their paternal home »- MB IV 679. -« D. Bosco there was an example of truly Christian kindness and in his government with us he avoided artificial formalism, rigorism, which he poses as an abyss between the one who commands and who obeys. Lover and expansive he exercised authority, inspiring respect, confidence and love. And our souls opened to him with intimate, joyful and total abandonment. We all wanted to confess to him (...). I would say this system is more unique than rare among superiors and employees »- G. BALLESIO, Intimate Life of Fr. Giovanni Bosco in his first Oratory in Turin. Turin, Tip. Salesian 1888, p. 21 - see
This is what opens hearts and young people reveal everything without fear to teachers, assistants and superiors. They become frank in confession and out of confession and 45 lend themselves docile to everything that wants to command the one from whom they are certain to be loved.
At that moment my other old pupil approached me who had a white beard and said: - Don Bosco now wants to know and see the young people who are currently in the Oratory? (He was Buzso zetti Giuseppe).
- Yup! I replied; because it is already a month that I no longer see them!
And he pointed them out to me. I saw the Oratory and all of you doing recreation. But he no longer heard shouts of joy and cries, he no longer saw that motion, that life as in the first scene. In the deeds and in the faces of many young people we read a boredom, an exhaustion, a musoneria, a distrust that made my heart feel sorry. I saw it is true that many who ran, played, waved themselves with blissful light-heartedness, but others were not few I saw, they were alone leaning on the pillars in the throes of
fol. 2v discouraging thoughts; others up the stairs and in the corridors or above the pogoles 60 on the garden side to escape common recreation; others walk slowly in groups talking in a low voice to each other giving around suspicious and malign glances: sometimes they smile but with a smile accompanied by looks that not only suspect, but to believe that Saint Louis would have blushed if he had found himself in expensive company; even among those who played there were some so lazy, that they could see clearly, as if they had no taste in amusement.
43 love, and love] affection and affection FGHI porta2 om EJ 50-51 (He ... Joseph) om F 58 stirring om EJ 62 strolling] they were smiling EJ 63] they were smiling J
50-51 Giuseppe Buzzetti, n. in 1832, a pupil of the Oratory from the beginning, student (1847-1851), lay collaborator, then religious coadjutor in 1877, m. in 1892 E. CERTA, Profiles of 33 Salesian brothers. Colle Don Bosco, LDC 1952, pp. 17-24.
- Have you seen your youth? that old student told me.
70 - I see them; I answered, sighing.
- How different they are from what we once were! exclaimed that old pupil.
- Unfortunately! How much unwillingness in this recreation.
- And from here comes the coldness of many in approaching the Saints
75 Sacraments, the neglect of the practices of piety in the Church and elsewhere; the evil star in a place where Divine Providence fills them. 3r - of every good for the body, for the soul, for the intellect. Hence the non-correspondence that many make to their vocation; hence the ingratitudes towards the Superiors; hence the secrets and murmurs, with all the other deplorable consequences.
- I understand, I mean, I replied. But how can these dear young people of mine be revived, so that they may resume their ancient liveliness, joy, expansion?
- With love!
67-68 how could they not find] that they could not find EJ 69 Hai] He HI your] his HI 70 I see] I saw EJ 72 that old] that ancient EFGHI 84 With love!] With charity! FGHI 85 Love?] With charity? FGHI
77-78 "Let us make pecuniary and personal sacrifices, but let us practice the preventive system and we will have vocations in abundance (...). Patience and gentleness, the Christian relationships of the masters with the students, will gain many vocations among them "Memoirs from 1841 to 1884-5-6, RSS 4 (1985), p. 106.
84-86 «... Our preventive education system. It must be the love that attracts young people to do good through continuous surveillance and direction; not the systematic punishment of the shortcomings, after these are committed "- Don Bosco in the concluding conference of the I General Chapter (1877), MB XIII 292.
86-91 «This morning he told me that his head is very tired, but he continues to take care of the things of our Congregation. We see at every moment how much he wants us and how many sacrifices, humiliations, he bears for his children. When he sometimes tells his past, he smiles, but those who listen to him hear their hearts tighten. He suffered in forty-eight years! this should be the topic to be preached to everyone, young and old "- Don Lemoyne to Fr Rua, from Rome on 04.4.1884 - ASC 9126 Rua - cf. also MB XVII 89. - "The only thing to admit as true, that is to say the great love that he always carried and still brings to the young, for the good of which he is ready to spend that much of the life that still remains" - Speech of Don Bosco, June 23, 1884, BS 8 (1884), n. 7, July, p. 98.
85 - Love? But aren't my young people loved enough? You know if I love them. You know how much I suffered and tolerated for over forty years, and how much I tolerate and suffer even now. How many hardships, how many humiliations, how many oppositions, how many persecutions to give them bread, house, masters and especially to procure the health of their souls. I did what I could and knew 90-fol. 3v- for those who form the affection of my whole life.
- I'm not talking about you!
- Whose then? Of those who take my place? Directors, Prefects, Masters, Assistants? Don't you see how they are martyrs of study and work? How do they spend their youthful years for those who entrusted Divine Providence to them?
- I see, I know; but this is not enough: we lack the best.
- What is missing then?
- That young people are not only loved but that they themselves know they are loved. 100
- But don't they have eyes on their foreheads? Don't they have the light of intelligence? Do they not see that what is done for them is all for their love?
- No, I repeat; this is not enough.
- What does it take, then? 105
87 I tolerate and suffer] I suffer and tolerate EJ 90 could and knew] known and could FGHI
92 you] she HI 95 consume] consecrate And consume HI consecrate J
99-100 «A certain Zerega Giuseppe (...) one day asked D. Bosco what were the qualities necessary for a director to hold a college or hospice well; and Don Bosco replied: - It is necessary (...): 1 that he is esteemed a saint - 2 ° that he is considered a scholar in every branch of science, especially in those things that interest pupils (...). 3 ° that young people know they are loved "- MB VII 302.
106-110 «It is a very difficult thing to make the youngsters take taste in prayer. Their fickle age makes anything that requires serious attention of mind seem nauseating and even enormous weight "- G. Bosco, The shepherd of the Alps. Turin, Tip. Salesian 1864, pp. 113-114, OE XIV 355-356. - "Speaking of penance to young people is generally frightening them" - Ibid., P. 119, OE XV 361 - "Affectionate to this mixture of devotion, playthings, walks, each one became very affectionate to me, that not only were they very obedient to my commands, but they were anxious for them to entrust some incumbency to be performed" - MO 157-158; cfr. MO 176. - «Give yourself ample freedom to jump, run, cackle at will. Gymnastics, music, declamation, theater,
- That being loved in those things that they like by participating in their infantile inclinations, they learn to see love in those things that they naturally like little; what are the discipline, the study, the mortification of oneself I and these things learn to fol. 4r 110 to do with love.
- Explain yourself better!
- Observe young people in recreation.
I watched and then replied: "And what's special to see?"
115 - Have you been educating young people for years and do not understand? Look better! Where are our Salesians?
I observed and saw that very few Priests and Clerics mingled among the young and even fewer took part in their entertainment. The Superiors were no longer the soul of recreation. Most
120 of them walked among them talking, regardless of what the students did; others watched the recreation giving themselves no thought of the young; others watched so far away without warning anyone who committed a fault; someone then warned but in a threatening manner and this rarely. There was some Salesian who
He would have liked to intrude on some group of young people, but I saw that these young people were trying to get away from the crowds. 4v masters and from the Superiors.
110 ante love add momentum and GHI love] momentum F 121 the pupils] the young EJ no] none E nepp not even E 122 of the young] of the students EJ
117-119 "Recreation, as we said, made it complete. All the sides of the large courtyard of this house were beaten by the feet of our Magone in a few minutes (...). It was wonderful to see the one who was the soul of recreation and he kept everyone in motion, as if he were carried by a car, to find himself the first in those places where duty called him "- Biographical outline of the young Magone Michele (1861), p. 33 - OE XIII 187. - "I have already observed something that does not please me too much. This thing is to see how there are always those two, three, four, or five brothers there gathered together, always the same and almost always separated from the others (...). So I desire, and you try to keep yourself always among the young in recreation time, to talk, to have fun with them, to give good advice. Vigilance. When you cannot entertain them in their entertainment, at least assist them, turn the most remote parts of the house and try to prevent evil. You cannot believe the good that can be done by climbing a ladder, passing through a corridor, taking a stroll here and there through the courtyard "- Don Bosco to the Salesians of Valdocco (Turin), 11 March 1869, MB IX 576. "Make sure that the assistants and in general those who are in some authority find themselves in the midst of young people in time of recreation" - Circular to the Salesians, from Turin on 11/15/1983, and II 320.
Then that friend of mine resumed: - In the ancient times of the Oratory she was not always among young people and especially in time of recreation? Do you remember those beautiful years? It was a blaze of paradise, an age that we always remember with love, because love was what we needed as a rule, and we had no secrets for her.
- Of course! And then everything was a joy for me and for the young people a momentum to get closer to me to want to talk to me, and a lively anxiety to hear my advice and put it into practice. But now you see how the 135 continuous audiences and the multiplied affairs and my health prevent me.
- All right: but if you can't, why don't your Salesians make you their imitators? Why don't you insist, don't you demand that you treat young people how you treated them? 140
- I speak, I mop but too much that many do not sen-I fol. 5r more tone than doing the labors of the past.
- And thus neglecting the less I lose the most and this is their most toiling. May they love what young people like and young people will love what the Superiors like. And in this way their effort will be easy. The cause of the present change in the Oratory is that a certain number of young people have no confidence in the Superiors. Formerly the hearts were all open to the Superiors, whom the young loved and readily obeyed.
131 love2] affection EFGJ-II 138 she] you D she corr D2 can] you can D can corr D2 her] your D her corr D2 143 this om F
128-130 "Those who find themselves in some office or assist young people, whom Divine Providence entrusts to us, all have the task of giving advice and advice to any young person in the house, whenever there is reason to do so especially when is about preventing the offense of God »- Regulations for the houses of the Society of St. Francis de Sales (1877), General articles, n. 1, OE XXIX 111.
147-151 "To our children. Your Father, your brother, the friend of your soul after three and a half months of absence starts today from Rome »- Don Bosco to the young people of Valdocco (Turin), from Rome on 14.4.74, E II 378. - "The student will always be full of respect towards the educator and will always remember with pleasure the direction he had, still considering his teachers and the other superiors as fathers and brothers" - The preventive system III 1, OE XXIX 107. - "Va "not as a Superior, but as a friend, brother and father" - Don Bosco to Fr Perrot, from Turin on 2.7.78, E III 360. - "The new Rector M. 1st will address some words to the voters, thank them for their trust placed in him and he will assure them that he wants to be of all the father, the friend, the brother, asks for their cooperation, and, where appropriate, their council »- Memoirs from 1841 to 1884-5-6 for the sac. Gio. Bosco, RSS 4 (1985), p. 101.
But now the Superiors are considered 150 as Superiors and no longer as fathers, brothers and friends; therefore they are feared and unloved. Therefore if we want to make a single heart and a single soul for Jesus' sake we must break that fatal barrier of distrust and submerge cordial confidence in it. Therefore, obedience should guide the pupil as the mother guides her child.
155 Then peace and the ancient coarse will reign in the Oratory. fol. 5v
- So how do you go about breaking this barrier?
- Familiarity with young people especially in recreation. Without familiarity, love cannot be demonstrated and without this demonstration there can be no confidence. Who wants to be loved must
160 let him see that he loves. Jesus Christ became small with the little ones and brought our infirmities. Here is the master of familiarity. The teacher seen only in the chair is a teacher and no longer, but if he goes to recreation with the young he becomes like a brother.
155 allegrezza] cheerfulness E 158 amore] affection FGHI 161 Here ... familiarity om D add mrg sin D2
151-153 "All the members of the congregation live together in common only by fraternal charity and simple vows which bind them together to form one heart and one soul to love and serve God" - Constitutions of the Society of St. Francis de Sales in the ms . original and in all subsequent editions. - «To the brothers living in the same house. 1 ° All Salesian confreres who live in the same house must form one heart and one soul with their director "- Memoirs from 1841 to 1884-5-6, RSS 4 (1985), p. 117.
157-171 «With the young students ... 2nd Prosecutor's Office to let you know by the students and to know them passing with them as much time as possible by trying to tell their ears some affectionate words, which you well know, from hand to hand in you will see the need. This is the great secret that will make you master of their heart "- Confidential reminders to the directors, first drafting 1863 - see MB VI, chap. XXX ... Don Bosco among young people ... The word to the ear, pp. 400-426. - «I saw several good priests who worked in the sacred ministry, but could not with them contract any familiarity (...). On several occasions crying he said to me, and also to others: "If I were a priest, I would like to do otherwise; I would like to approach children, I would like to say good words to them, give good advice "- MO 44. - «Professor Banaudi was a true model of teachers. Without ever inflicting any punishment he had managed to make himself feared and loved by all his students. He loved everyone as children, and they loved him as a tender father "- MO 63. -" To succeed well with the youngsters, make a great study of using beautiful manners with them; let yourself be loved and not afraid; show them and persuade them, that you desire the health of their soul; correct their defects with patience and charity, especially abstain from striking them; in short, make sure that, when they see you, they run around you and do not run away »- Don Bosco to former ecclesiastical students, BS 4 (1880) n. 9, Sept., p. 11. they loved as a tender father »- MO 63. -« To succeed well with the youngsters, make yourself a great study to use with them beautiful manners; let yourself be loved and not afraid; show them and persuade them, that you desire the health of their soul; correct their defects with patience and charity, especially abstain from striking them; in short, make sure that, when they see you, they run around you and do not run away »- Don Bosco to former ecclesiastical students, BS 4 (1880) n. 9, Sept., p. 11. they loved as a tender father »- MO 63. -« To succeed well with the youngsters, make yourself a great study to use with them beautiful manners; let yourself be loved and not afraid; show them and persuade them, that you desire the health of their soul; correct their defects with patience and charity, especially abstain from striking them; in short, make sure that, when they see you, they run around you and do not run away »- Don Bosco to former ecclesiastical students, BS 4 (1880) n. 9, Sept., p. 11. and do not flee »- Don Bosco to former ecclesiastical students, BS 4 (1880) n. 9, Sept., p. 11. and do not flee »- Don Bosco to former ecclesiastical students, BS 4 (1880) n. 9, Sept., p. 11.
If one is seen only preaching from the pulpit it will be said that he does neither more of his duty, but if he says a word in recreation it is the word of one who loves. How many conversions 165 did not cause some of his words made to resound suddenly in the ear of a young man while he enjoyed himself. Those who know they are loved love and those who are loved get everything especially from young people. This confidence puts an electric current between the young and the fol. 6r Superioiri. The hearts open and make their needs known and their flaws manifest. This love makes the Superiors bear the hardships, the troubles, the ingratitudes, the troubles, the faults, the negligence of the youngsters. Jesus Christ did not break the reed already broken, nor did it extinguish the wick that smoked. Here is your model. Then you will no longer see who will work for vainglory; who will punish only to avenge his own offense; who will withdraw from the field of surveillance out of jealousy of a feared preponderance of others; who will murmur of others wanting to be loved and esteemed by the young, excluding all other Superiors, gaining nothing but contempt and hypocritical moine; those who let their hearts be stolen by a creature and for this court to neglect all the other youngsters; who for the sake of their own comfort keep in mind the strict duty of surveillance; who for a vain human respect refrain from warning those who must be warned. If there is this true love, nothing will be sought but the glory of God and the health of souls. It is when this love languishes - 185 fol. 6v - that things are no longer good for me. Because you want to replace the love the coldness of regulation? Why do the superiors move away from the observance of those education rules that Don Bosco dictated to them? Because the system of preventing the disorders with vigilance and lovingly is gradually replacing the less weighty and brighter system for those who command to ban laws which, if they are supported by punishments, ignite hatreds and bear sorrows; if we neglect to make them observe, they yield contempt for their superiors and are they the cause of very serious disorders? it is gradually replacing the less heavy and brighter system for those who command to ban laws that if they are supported by punishments ignite hatred and bear sorrows; if we neglect to make them observe, they yield contempt for their superiors and are they the cause of very serious disorders? it is gradually replacing the less heavy and brighter system for those who command to ban laws that if they are supported by punishments ignite hatred and bear sorrows; if we neglect to make them observe, they yield contempt for their superiors and are they the cause of very serious disorders?
174 smoked] fumigava GHI 182-184 who ... admonished add mrg sin D2 182-183 a vain ... human] respect vain EJ 186 to love] to charity FGHI 188 of education om EJ
179-181 «The masters, the chiefs of art, the assistants must be of known morality. Try to avoid any sort of affection or particular friendships with the students as the plague, and remember that the misleading of one can compromise an educational institute "- The preventive system II 2, OE XXIX 103.
And this necessarily happens if there is no familiarity. If - 195 - it is therefore desired that the oratory return to the ancient happiness, the ancient system is re-enacted: that the Superior be all to all, always ready to listen to every doubt, or complaint of the young, all eye to watch paternally their conduct, all heart to look for the 200 spiritual and temporal good of those whom Providence has the greatest affection for them. 7r data. Then the hearts will no longer be closed and certain secretions that kill will no longer reign. Only in cases of immorality are the Superiors inexorable. It is better to run the danger of driving an innocent out of the house than to consider him a scandal.
Then I asked: "And what is the principal means for treating similar familiarity and similar love and confidence?"
- The exact observance of the house rules.
210 - And nothing else?
- The best dish in a lunch is good wax.
While this is how my old pupil finished speaking and I continued
to watch this recreation with deep regret I gradually felt oppressed by great exhaustion that was growing every now and then.
215 This oppression reached the point that I could no longer resist it. 7v shaken and found. I found myself standing by the bed. My legs were so swollen and they hurt me so much that I could no longer stand. The hour was very late so I went to bed determined to write these lines to my dear children.
220 I wish I did not have these dreams because they tire me too much. The following day he felt broken in the person and I could not wait to rest the following evening. But here, as soon as I was in bed, the dream started again. Aveo before the courtyard, the young people who are now in the Oratory, and the same ancient pupil of the Oratory. I began to question him:
225 - What you told me I will let my Salesians know, but what do I have to say to the youth of the Oratory?
He replied: - That they recognize how much the Superiors, the teachers, the assistants struggle and study for their love, then that if it were not for their good they would not submit to the many sacrifices; that you remember. 830 I must be humility the source of all tranquility; that they know how to bear the faults of others then that perfection is not found in the world but this is only in paradise; let them cease from murmuring because these cool hearts; and above all that they try to live in the Holy grace of God.
198 eye] eyes EJ 225 you said] you said F 228 fatichi] get tired EJ
202-203 "You will never be too severe in the things that serve to preserve morality" - Memoirs from 1841 to 1884-5-6, RSS 4 (1985), p. ninety two.
Whoever does not have peace with God, has no peace with himself, has no peace with others. 235
- And then you tell me that you are among my young people of those who do not have peace with God?
- This is the first cause of the bad mood, among the others that you know, to which you must remedy, and which does not do now what I tell you. In fact, he does not distrust anyone who has secrets to guard, except those who fear that these secrets come to know each other, because he knows that he would return shame and disgrace to them. At the same time, if the heart does not have peace with others. 8v - God remains anxiously restless, intolerant I of obedience, is irritated by nothing, it seems to him that everything goes bad, and because it has no love, he judges that the Superiors do not love him. 245
- And yet, my dear, do you not see how often Confessions and Communions are in the Oratory?
- It is true that the frequency of the Confessions is great, but what is radically lacking in so many young people who confess is stability in purpose. They confess but always the same shortcomings, the same 250 next occasions, the same bad habits, the same disobediences, the same neglect of duties. This is how it goes on for months and months, and even for years, and some even go on to the 5th year. They are confessions that are worth little or nothing; therefore they do not bring peace and if a young girl was called in that state to the court of God it would be a very serious business.
- And there are many of them at the Oratory?
fol. 9r - Few compared to the large number of young people in the house: Observe. - And pointed them out to me.
238 you know] you know F she knows torr F2 she knows HI 239 you have to] must F ti] F 244-245 and why ... love om EJ
234-235 "He spoke of the great gift of peace, concluding that to be at peace with God and with one's neighbor one must first be at peace with oneself" - Don Bosco at the FMA August 28, 1875, MB XI 363. - "Continue the journey of virtue and you will always have peace of heart, the benevolence of men, and the blessing of the Lord "- Don Bosco to the students of the college of St. Nicolas (Argentina), lett. of 1.7.1876, E III 67.
248-250 "The things that are ordinarily lacking in their confession [to] the children are the pain of sins and the purpose" - Memoirs from 1841 to 1884-5-6, RSS 4 (1985), p. 91.
260 I looked and one by one I saw those young people. But in these few me
I saw things that have profoundly embittered my heart. I don't want to put them on paper, but when I get back I want to show them to everyone they refer to. Here I will only tell you that it is time to pray and to make firm resolutions; propose not with words but with facts and
265 to show that the Comollo, the Savio Domenico, the Besucco and the Saccardi, still live among us. Finally I asked my friend: "Do you have anything else to say to me?"
- He preaches to all great and small who always remember that 270 are sons of Mary, Help of Christians. That she gathered them here to lead them away from the dangers of the world, so that they might love each other as brothers and give glory to God and to her with their good conduct. I What is the Madonna what they provide bread and means to study fol. 9v with infinite thanks and portents. Remember that I am on the eve of the 275th feast of their SS. Mother and that with her help must fall that barrier of distrust that the Devil knew how to raise between young people and Superiors and of which he knows how to benefit for the ruin of certain souls.
- And will we succeed in removing this barrier?
- Yes, certainly as long as big and small are ready to suffer some small mortification for Mary's sake and put into practice what I told her.
269 Preach] Predichi F
265 Luigi Comollo (1817-1839), cleric with Don Bosco in the seminary of Chieri; of Don Bosco the historical notes on the life of the cleric Luigi Comollo (1844).
Domenico Savio (1842-1857), n. at Riva di Chieri on 2 April 1842 he entered the Oratory on 29 October 1854, a student, he was released on 1 March 1857, m. in Mondonio on March 9th; canonized in 1954.
Francesco Besucco, n. in Argentera (Cuneo) in 1850 he entered the Oratory on 3 August 1863, student, m. at the Oratory on 9 January 1864.
Ernesto Saccardi (1850-1866), n. in Lyon on 15 January 1850 he entered Mira-bello Monferrato (AL) on 24 December 1865, student, m. at the Oratory on 4 July 1866. 269 "Promote fervent prayers among the young for me (...). 2nd Because I need a lot of money. Let this be said to the great, let us say to the little ones »- Don Bosco at the meeting of the Superior Council on 28 February 1884, MB XVII 34. -« D. Bosco tells Cereja [or ciarèia, Piedmontese dialect, = good morning] to you and then to all the other adults and children "- Don Lemoyne to Don Rua, lett. from Rome of April 16, 1884, ASC 9126 Rua. - "This should be the topic to be preached to everyone, big and small, because unfortunately we don't think about it" - Don Lemoyne to Don Rua, lett. from Rome on April 20, 1884, ASC 9126 Rua. See also lin. 279.
Meanwhile, I kept looking at my youngsters, and to the spectacle of those who saw them moving towards eternal perdition, I felt such a tightness in my heart that I woke up. Many very important things that I saw I would still like to tell you, but time and conveniences do not allow it to me.
I conclude: You know what this poor old man wants from you. What did all my life consume for your dear young people? Nothing else except, given the due proportions, the happy days of the ancient oratory return. The days of Christian love and confidence among the 290 young people and the Superiors; the days of the Spirit of condescension and forbearance for the love of Jesus Christ of one towards the other; the days of open hearts with all simplicity and candor, the days of charity and true joy for all. I need you to console me by giving me the hope and the promise that you will do all that I wish for the good of your souls. You do not know enough about how lucky you are to have been admitted to the Oratory. Before God I protest: It is enough for a young person to enter a Salesian house because the Blessed Virgin take it immediately under its special protection. So let's all get along. The charity of those who - 300 fol. 10v - the charity of those who must obey must make the spirit of St. Francis de Sales reign among us. O my dear children, the time is approaching in which I will have to detach myself from you and depart for my eternity (Note of the Secretary. At this point Don Bosco suspended to dictate; his eyes were filled with tears, not for regret, but 305 for ineffable tenderness that leaked from his gaze and from the sound of his voice: after a few moments he continued) so I long to leave you, priests, or clerics, or dear young people for that way of the Lord in which he himself desires you.
290-294 "I do not want you to consider me as your Superior as much as your friend. Therefore do not be afraid of me, no fear, but instead a great deal of confidence, which is what I desire, which I ask of you, as I expect from true friends. - Without your help I can do nothing. I need that we agree and that true friendship and trust reign between me and you "- from two" goodnight "of Don Bosco of August-September of 1862, MB VII 503-504.
298-299 "They continue to pray for him, often remembering the great fortune of being so special children of the Madonna" - Don Lemoyne to Don Rua, lett. from Rome of April 16, 1884, ASC 9126 Rua.
To this end the Holy Father 310 whom I saw on Friday 9th May sends his blessing to you wholeheartedly. The feast day of Maria SS. Help of Christians I will be with you before the effigy of our most loving Mother. I want this great festival to be celebrated with every solemnity and D. Lazzero and D. Marchisio are thinking of making sure that we are happy even in the refectory. There
315 feast of Ma Iria Ausiliatrice must be the prelude to the feast you are dreaming of. llr biam celebrate together a day in paradise.
Your most affectionate friend in GC Sac. Gio. Bosco.
309-311 Indeed, on Friday 9 May Don Bosco had a long cordial audience with Pope Leo XIII. To the secretary Don Lemoyne, introduced at the end of the hearing, the pa¬pa would have recommended: - You must take care of his health and do not strain trop¬po. Don't let him write: his eyes are too tired and sick - MB XVII 105. 313-314 Giuseppe Lazzero, n. in Pino Torinese on 10 May 1837, he professed religious vows in 1862, priest in 1865, of the Superior Council of the Salesian Society from 1874 to 1898, deputy director (1875-1879) and director (1879-1886) of the Oratory , m. at Mathi Torinese on 7 March 1910.
According to Marchisio (1857-1914), Salesian priest, prefect (in charge of general discipline and economics) of the Oratory in the school year 1883-1884, m. in Bologna on May 20, 1914.
"Caris.mo D. Lazzero, (...). You will tell our beloved confreres and dear children of the house that my health in particular since two days, has greatly improved, and therefore upon my arrival I wish that we have a beautiful party in the church to thank the Ma ¬ donna for the innumerable benefits she has given us , and also in the refectory to drive away melancholy and be happy in the Lord (...) Rome, April 23, 1884 »- lett. to the director of the Oratory, ASC 131.01, E IV 256.
edited by Francesco Motto
"Don Viglietti, look, in my little table there is a book of memoirs, you know which one I am talking about, see to take it and then give it to Don Bonetti, who does not go into any hands."
With these words, handed down to us from the notebook of the faithful secretary, Don Bosco handed over to his successors what in the Salesian tradition will be called the "spiritual testament" 2 of Don Bosco, but which actually bears the title, autograph of the saint, "Memories from 1841 to 1884-5-6 for the sac. Gio. Bosco to his Salesian sons ".
The definition is however appropriate, if only for the date on which the manuscript passed from the hands of Don Bosco to those of the continuators of his work (December 24, 1887: 38 days before his death) and to the degree of tension and inner vibrations, proper to a father who is about to take a final leave from his children. After having sown so much in life by word and action, Don Bosco did not want to miss the last appointment: to the availability of others he entrusts his last message and the full realization of his intentions.
It is indeed a paper of about 140 small pages, to which Don Bosco, at the zenith of life, handed over memories and advice to the members of the congregation of St. Francis of Sales, for the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, for the cooperators and benefactors of Salesian works.
1 ASC 110 Viglietti (8) Cronaca di Don Bosco from 23 December to 31 January 1888, pp. 8-9, quoted from MB XVIII 492-493. Don Bonetti was then Director General Spiritual of the Salesian Congregation.
2 Fr Rua spoke of a "testament" in the circular of 8 February 1888, just over a week after the death of Don Bosco: Circular letters of Don Michele Rua to the Salesians. Turin, tip. SAID - Good press, 1910, p. 4. The term "spiritual testament" appears with a certain form of officiality in the presentation of the "letter of farewell" made by Fr. Albera in 1916: "It is received and preserved as its spiritual testament, dictated by the great affection with which it flamed the beloved children in Jesus Christ ": Practices of piety in use in Salesian houses. Turin, Salesian printing school  p. 325. Actual holographic testamentary provisions are preserved in ASC and published in MB X 1331-1336.
Numerous and conspicuous above all are the recommendations and notices for those who, in the two congregations founded by him, exercise authority: the Rector Major, the General Chapter, the Superior Council, the directors, etc.
For the understanding of Don Bosco and his spirit, for the deepening of his pedagogical-religious conception, for the knowledge of his anxieties concerning the salvation of the soul and the future of Salesian society, the "spiritual testament" constitutes without one of the most eloquent writings is the subject of denial. And in spite of this some content loses and certain falls in tone, of which we will say.
In addressing his "sons" Don Bosco first of all reveals to them the educational and pastoral criteria, the fundamental coordinates to which he has always adhered in his activity as a zealous priest and shrewd educator, and which he would also like to respect for the future. He expresses his point of view about the function and exercise of authority in the congregation, about the valorization of people, not to sacrifice to the same needs of asceticism and common life. He makes no secret of his conception of Salesian religious life as a definitive choice for poor and abandoned youth. It highlights its expectations regarding the forgetting of offenses, the completeness of forgiveness, effective love for poverty, gratitude towards benefactors, care for vocations, Marian devotion.
Between those lines traced in the awareness of death felt as next, the depths of Don Bosco's soul open up to the reader's eye: the extraordinary humility that emerges from the request for forgiveness, suffrages, prayers; the fear of having given scandal even if involuntary; the reticence and the barely concealed modesty about possible praises for the supernatural facts connected with his life; requests relating to the religious truth of his literary productions; the fear of God and at the same time the awareness of divine mercy.
Once again, at the end of the earthly day lived in constant asceticism and interwoven with work, sacrifice, sufferings borne in the serene conviction of conquering souls, the leitmotiv of his spirituality emerges with incumbent evidence: trepidation for eternal salvation, a petition continues , almost haunting.
The "spiritual testament" could thus be read as a mirror, a self-portrait of Don Bosco, who by his most intimate secrets of his scrinium cordis little or nothing excludes out of fear, pity or modesty. Faced with certain steps, it is difficult to avoid the suggestion of being in the presence of a "sacred" text, so much is sprinkled with words that are not in vain and not decaying: words of faith, of gratitude, of love, of hope, of humility, of forgiveness, words that death thought of as real and actual marks of incontrovertible sincerity.
In his "Memoirs", rich in values of faith and praxis, but written in a tone of utmost confidence, Don Bosco expressed himself with an immediacy and naturalness that would dispel any shadow of the always easy rhetoric and replace the possible eloquence the simplicity of saying. A style, that of the "spiritual testament", which appears unadorned, substantial, more effective in the outpouring of feelings and concreteness of recommendations than in the concision of concepts.
Above all, despite the poverty of the lexicon and the well-groomed style, the moral and spiritual force that emanates from certain pages is striking, the incisiveness and finality of some aphoristic statements, 3 the suppliant tenderness of certain passages, 4 the decisive rejection of all triumphalism and of every celebration of his post-mortem works, the solemn tone of the epilogue which is tinged with the colors of the epic and of the prophecy, the appeal moved by fidelity to tradition, omen and promise of a radiant future.
From what has been said, it could be deduced that the document has achieved remarkable resonance and enjoyed seasons of wide fame. None of this, at least with regard to the text considered in its entirety.
The lack of relief can easily be attributed to an etiology of an internal nature in the document itself. First of all, the lack of systematicity and organicity in the presentation of the contents, which are often repeated and sometimes with a formulation that is not very dissimilar; 5 secondly the disharmonies of style and the inequalities of tone that break the homogeneity of the literary form; 6 then the excessive concreteness and the non-relevance of some topics discussed; finally the vast digressions and the insertion of letters to individual persons who suspend that logic of thought and that unity of discourse that would be reasonable to expect.
3 Eg: The priest does not only go to heaven, he does not go only to hell; try to make yourself loved, then you will be easily obeyed; the virtues not acquired in the novitiate time are no longer acquired; when comforts or comforts begin among us, our pious society has completed its course; when it happens that a Salesian succumbs and ceases to live working for souls, then you will say that our congregation has returned a great triumph and the blessings of heaven will descend on it abundantly; if you have loved me in the past, continue to love me in the future with the exact observance of our constitutions.
4 See the pages dedicated to the "farewell letter" for all the "dear so-called beloved children in GC", as well as the "recommendation for myself" that precedes the epilogue.
5 The director of the houses Don Bosco addresses page 43 directly and then again on pages 73-80. The letters to the vice-Cessacess Cessac and to the Baroness Scoppa can be found on pages 95-96, spaced more than 20 pages from the other eleven letters preceding them. Poverty is dealt with in at least 10 pages, between the fifteenth and the last. Symptomatic also the fact that Don Bosco at a certain point of his writing feels the need to write the textual words: "I note here what I should have said elsewhere".
In this regard, however, the precariousness of Don Bosco's physical conditions in recent times must be kept in mind. Literally worn down by the labors of over forty years of life dedicated to an active and tireless apostolate, with a view now very weak, Don Bosco drew up his "spiritual testament" in the space of a three-year period, when a certain resumption of his conditions of health coincided with the rare moments of free time from other more urgent occupations.9
Furthermore, the character of the writing should not be underestimated, which, aiming at the maximum concreteness and confidence, required spontaneity, familiarity and therefore not a particular warning to a content reworking and to a stylistically supervised editing. '° Which remains true, even if the multiple variants, all autograph of the saint, have sometimes specified the contents, emphasized the concepts, improved the style.
6 From the statement of concrete demands of poverty we immediately pass to the touching expressions of the "farewell letter"; suggestions for the common life are followed by recommendations for the possible printing or reprinting of Don Bosco's writings. The very first pages of the notebook then contain real memories or "memories" of Don Bosco; most of the document offers exhortations for the future of the Salesian congregation. We cannot exclude the hypothesis that at the time of writing the first pages Don Bosco had the intention of continuing in some way the "Memoirs of the Oratory", suspended about a decade earlier.
7 Such are for example the provisions for the immediate post-death of Don Bosco, the letters to people of the time, the theme of the director-confessor, etc.
8 Cf. note 5.
9 There have been unexceptionable testimonials from doctors, secretaries and eyewitnesses about Don Bosco's health in recent years. Confirmations that are very significant are found in autograph correspondence. We refer in all cases to the Biographical Memoirs (vol. XVII, XVIII) and to the Epistolario (vol. IV). Furthermore, it is worth bearing in mind how many and exhausting trips of those years to Italy, France and Spain have affected Don Bosco's state of health. The seriousness of the evil at the moment of handing over the "Memoirs" to Don Viglietti is officially admitted by Fr Rua who writes in the circular of 21 December 1887: "This month I send the usual circular letter for a very serious reason. D. Bosco who has been incapacitated for some time, for about two weeks he had become very serious and can no longer walk and when he wants to move he must be wheelchair-bound, he cannot feed himself and he can no longer make his voice heard, he has become so weak. To better understand the seriousness of his evil, I will add that for more than a week in spite of his great desire, he can no longer celebrate Holy Mass, something he never forgets except when he finds himself burdened by infirmity ". See also note 13.
10 The need felt as such by Don Bosco regarding the ownership and dignity of the language for each text to be presented to the public is clear. What is more significant is what he says about his published and unpublished writings in the "Memoirs" themselves (pp. 66-69).
The "spiritual testament" was written by Don Boscò in a notebook, or better, on an accounting diary, of 308 pages. The manuscript is a holograph of the saint, with the exception of pages 117-128, on which another hand copied the text of nine sheets torn before page 71 and two separate sheets after the same page.
Pages 72, 94, 105, 106 and 116 remained white; the same happened for pages 129 to 166. Perhaps Don Bosco thought of leaving space for other recommendations that could come to his mind later. "The touching epilogue on pages 267-276 is followed by blank pages up to the end of the book."
The "testament" is drawn up with a succession of ink or deep purple or light purple or black or brown. If the heterogeneity of the contents and the type of corrections and additions are associated with this, there is a clear indication of the diversity of times in which the document was written. The beginning of the drafting in fact, at least until page 22, is to be carried over to the month of January-February 1884.'3 From page 22 onwards up to at least page 95 it seems to be dated in the space that elapses between the month of September of 1884 and the month of May 1886.
11 On page 70 a white archivist wrote: «The nine pages torn between 70 and 71 contained letters to various meritorious people, to be delivered to the recipients after Don Bosco's death. See copy on page 117ss. " The original of pag. 127 was personally found by the curator of these notes in a picture hanging on a wall of Palazzo Callori in Turin.
12 Don Bosco's intention to continue his memories even after 1886 is perhaps testified also by the hyphen placed next to the number 6 in the title of the manuscript. On 6 o'clock he should have followed the 7, that is to say the date 1887. Here it is observed en passant that while the number 5 of the title is written with purplish ink (as well as the rest of the title which however dates back to the previous year), the number 6 instead is annotated with black ink, further proof of the different compilation periods.
13 The start of the "Memoirs" coincided with a very critical period of Don Bosco's health. Don Celia writes: "In the afternoon of January 31 Don Bosco went to S. Benigno to celebrate with the ascribed Saint Francis of Sales. The confessions and the hearings tired him; the tiredness then, added to the troubles that molested him more than usual in the last weeks, meant that, starting, he appeared exhausted to the extreme [...] Don Bosco's health went from bad to worse. At first an extraordinary prostration of forces had caused the rumor to tear his stomach; then came a principle of bronchitis with cough and spit blood. On the night of February 10th he filled the cloth with blood. The swelling of the legs, which had afflicted him for years, rose to the thighs. On the 12th, he was obliged to keep the bed by Doctor Albertotti. That evening in a consultation the doctors Albertotti and Fissore found symptoms of extreme weakness: the heartbeat was barely perceptible [...] Accustomed to a life of incessant activity, the coulters weighed unbearably; yet his head did not stand up to serious reflections or readings of any kind. In his talk you could see disconnections of ideas and, getting up several hours a day, he wrote letters with frequent omissions of words [...] Sometimes, making business relations, he exclaimed: - If this continues, I will certainly not arrive at the party of my Golden Mass ... This business will be done by those who succeed ": MB XVII 25-30. The Biographical Memoirs then, drawing on the Biographies of the Salesians who died in 1883 and 1884 (Turin 1885, pp. 110-116) link the fact of Don Bosco's narrow escape from death to the offer of the life of the ascribed cleric Luigi Gamerro, who died on 10 February 1884.
The preparation times of the final pages, that is from page 96 onwards, should have been the last months of 1886. For the terminus ad quem of Don Bosco's last intervention on the manuscript, it is not difficult to put it on December 24th 1887, day in which the notebook passed into the hands of Don Viglietti.
The same irregular and tormented spelling is typical of the last years of Don Bosco's life. The excessive approximation or widening to excess of the signs of the alphabet, the fact that sometimes a few words or very few lines cover the entire space of a page are evidently due to the insufficiency of sight, to the physical and psychic tiredness of the writer.
The ASC holds five allograft copies of the document in question. The first two are the work of the secretary, Don Gioachino Berto, who with a large and ornate handwriting transcribes the entire "testament". One of them authenticated by the stamp of Salesian society and that of the archiepiscopal curia of Turin, was compiled on the occasion of Don Bosco's de scriptis process.
Of the other three apographs kept in the ASC one, on sheets of protocol format, is edited by an archive copyist, Giuseppe Balestra; the second, on a black notebook, is of a hand left anonymous, as is the third, on protocol format sheets, dating back to the twenties of this century.
Regarding the editions of the document, we recall:
1. Eugenio CERTA, Biographical Memoirs of St. John Bosco. Vol. XVII. Turin, SEI 1936, pp. 257-273; publishes the main part. Pages 3-6 of Don Bosco's manuscript had already been published by Giovanni Battista LEMOYNE in vol. I of the MB on pages 518-519. Pages 7-23 of the manuscript, containing heterogeneous themes, are somewhat difficult to identify in the various volumes of the MB. Finally the letters to the benefactors are reported in the MB vol. XVIII, pp. 839-842 and in the Epistolario, edited by Eugenio Ceria, vol. IV, pp. 388-391.
2. Angelo AMADEI, Don Bosco and his apostolate. From his personal memories and from testimonies of contemporaries. Turin, SEI 1929, passim, especially pp. 720-740, 759-764: it publishes numerous sections with a few words of comment.
3. Giovanni Bosco, Spiritual Writings, edited by J. AUBRY. Rome, Città Nuova Editrice 1976, vol. I, pp. 82-84; vol. II, pp. 270-293: publishes the entire text, omitting the parts of a purely legal, historical or pastoral practice nature.
A special mention deserves the printed reproduction of the "farewell letter". Published on a flying leaflet several times during Don Rua's rectorate, it was included in the book Pratiche di pietà in salesian houses in 1916.14 Since then it has been present in all subsequent reprints, re-editions and translations in various languages. Analogously, it happened for the book of the practices of piety of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, from the first reprint of 1894 to the one with additions and updates of 1962.
Following the Special General Chapters, the letter-testament was transferred from the manuals of the practices of piety to the Constitutions and Regulations of the society of St. Francis of Sales, 1972 and 1984 [appendix, respectively pp. 283-287 and 255-258: discharge letter and very short other passages of the «testament»], in the FMA Manual-Regulations 1975, pp. 77-79 and Constitutions and Regulations FMA 1982 [appendix pp. 280-281].
Don Bosco's autograph text was reproduced scrupulously and faithfully through a careful examination of the only witness, which reduces the stemmatic economy of the "Memoirs".
The curator's interventions were limited to
- normalization of the spelling (eg j which becomes i);
- uniformity in the use of capitals, preserved only for the terms such as God, Church, Rector Major, Superior Chapter and for those preceded by S. [San];
- introduction of italics for quotations in Latin;
- correction of the spelling of letters in French, of which, moreover, as mentioned, there is only an allograft copy;
14 See note 2. Thus we read in an archive document: «It was also decided that the affectionate and very touching letter written by Don Bosco's own hand written to the Salesians should be printed cleanly, with a recommendation to his successor to have them copied afterwards his burial. Thus it will be done and with the choice of a format that can be kept either in the book of the Constitutions or in another of piety, so that it can be easier to read it often, as the testament of one's own Father »- ASC Minutes of the Chapter meetings, vol. I, p. 110.
- separation and highlighting of the titles, all of which already exist in the original.
The punctuation is that followed by Don Bosco, with some exceptions for the sake of clarity. Given the nature of this collection, we did not believe it was essential to present the stratigraphy of the variants, as they were published in RSS 4 (1985), pp. 88-127. On the other hand, we have not omitted the apparatus of historical information, biblical references and above all the parallel loci.15 If it is true that the "spiritual testament" allows one to add to Don Bosco's image a series of folds, of human notations, of spiritual vibrations that had escaped interpretations based on other sources or suffocated by conventional clichés, are equally true that in the perspective of the conclusion of earthly life, which calms passions and favors more serene visions, the "spiritual testament" is transfigured by a pathetic, touching atmosphere that magnifies its proportions and meaning. Comparison with earlier texts of a similar content allows us to better explain them and to appreciate more the more pressing themes, thanks also to the maturation process that has come, so to speak, at the end.
15 The mention of parallel loci, of explicit or non-explicit allusions, of content and form coincidences is evidently limited to a certain number, also in order not to overcrowd the relative apparatus more than once. Greater completeness can easily be achieved by consulting the biographical memoirs of St. John Bosco. Alphabetical repertoire by Pietro Ciccarelli. Turin, SEI 1983 extra-commercial edition. There is no doubt that the choice made is subjective, but such is the inevitable condition of any heuristic moment.
p. 3 I started the exercises [izi] sp [irituale] in the house of the Mission on May 26th, the feast of St. Philip Neri, 1841.
The sacred ordination [erdotale] was held by Msgr. Luigi 5 Franzoni our archbishop [esco] in his episcopate on June 5 of that year.
The first Mass was celebrated in St. Francis of Assisi assisted by my distinguished benefactor [actor] director D. Giuseppe Caffasso of Castelnuovo d'Asti on 6 June dom [enica] of the SS. - 10 - Trinity.
Conclusion of the exercises done in preparation for the celeb [ration] of the first Holy Mass, was: The priest does not only go to heaven, he does not go only to hell.
5-11 «The day of my ordination was the eve of the SS. Trinity, and I celebrated my first mass in the church of St. Francis of Assisi, where he was head of conference d. Caffasso »- MO 114-115.
5-6 Mons. Luigi Fransoni [Franzoni for Don Bosco] was born in Genoa on 29 March 1789. Ordained a priest (Ste in 1814, he entered the congregation of urban missionaries. On 13 August 1821 he was appointed bishop of Fossano and on 24 February 1832 archbishop of Turin, imprisoned by the government of the Sardinian kingdom first in the citadel of Turin and then in the fortress of Fenestrelle, exile in Lyon (1850), died there on March 26, 1862. The figure of Archbishop Fransoni was linked to that of Don Bosco for about 30 years: from the entrance of Don Bosco in the seminary to the priestly ordination of one year in advance, from the foundation of the work of the Oratories [appointed Director-chief on 31 March 1852] to its consolidation, until the death of the prelate. Bosco, Fr G. Battista Lemoyne, will call him "father, support, confidant friend of Don Bosco" - MB I 242.
9 Defined by Pius IX as "the pearl of the Italian clergy", Giuseppe Cafasso [Caffasso for Don Bosco] was born on 15 January 1811 in Castelnuovo d'Asti, now Castelnuovo Don Bosco. Ordained a priest on 22 September 1833, he succeeded the theologian Luigi Guala in the direction of the ecclesiastical boarding school of Turin from 1848. He died on 23 June 1860 and was canonized on 22 June 1947. He was of spiritual and material help to his fellow citizen Giovanni Bosco: other towards the apostolate of youth and transfused in him a profound priestly zeal. Don Bosco will weave the praise of it in the Biography of the priest Giuseppe Caffasso exposed in two funeral reasonings. Turin, tip. GB Paravia and comp. 1860: OE XII  - .
If he does well, he will go to heaven with the souls he saved p. 4 15 with his good example; if it hurts, if it gives scandal it will go to perdition with the damned souls for its scandal.
1 ° Never take walks except for serious needs: visits to the sick, etc.
20 2 ° Strictly occupy time well.
3rd Suffer, do, humble oneself in everything and always, when it comes to saving souls.
4 ° The charity and sweetness of I St. Francis de Sales guide me on p. 5 everything.
25 5 ° I will always show myself happy with the food that will be prepared for me, as long as it is not harmful to health.
6 ° Beverò, watered wine and only as a remedy: that is to say, only when and how much will be required by health.
7th Work is a powerful weapon against the enemies of the soul, so 30 will not give the body more than five hours of sleep each night. During the day, especially after lunch, I will not take any rest. I will make a few exceptions in cases of illness. THE
[8th] Every day I will give some time to meditation, to reading p. 6 spiritual. During the day I will make a brief visit or at least a pre-dial to the SS. Sacrament. I will do at least a quarter of an hour of preparation, and another quarter of an hour of thanksgiving to the Holy Mass.
18-19 "Do not visit unless for reasons of charity and necessity" - Memories to the missionaries, RSS 3 (1984), p. 207.
23-24 "Let us therefore all agree. The charity of those who command, the charity of those who must obey let the spirit of St. Francis de Sales reign among us "- Letter from Rome 1884, RSS 3 (1984), p. 351. - «The age of our American businesses is approaching. We insist on the charity and sweetness of St. Francis de Sales that we must imitate "- Letter to Don Luigi Lasagna, E IV 340. -" Another thing that we must study together to promote is the spirit of charity and sweetness of St. Francis di Sales »- ASC Minutes of the 2nd General Chapter 1880, Barberis notebook.
27-30 "I will love and practice retirement, temperance in eating and drinking: I will not take rest except for the hours strictly necessary for health" - MO 88. "Flee idleness and questions. Great sobriety in food, drink and rest "- Memories to missionaries, RSS 3 (1984), p. 207.
33-34 "Besides the ordinary practices of piety, I will never omit to do a little meditation every day and a little spiritual reading" - MO 88.
[9th] I will never make conversations with women outside the case to hear them in confession or some other spiritual necessity. These memoirs were written in 1841. I
p. 7 1842 40
I will try to recite the Breviary divinely and recite it preferably in church so that it can serve as a visit to the Blessed Sacrament. Sacrament.
I will approach the Sacrament of Penitence every eight days and will try to practice the intentions that each time I will make in - 45 - confession.
When I am asked to listen to the confessions of the faithful [,] if p. 8 is solicitude [,] I will interrupt the holy office and I will make even shorter the preparation and thanks of the Mass in order to lend myself to exercise this sacred ministry. 50
P. 9 (different times)
Since in the sacristy, for the most part, requests are soon made to speak or to listen in confession, so before leaving the room I will procure a brief preparation for Holy Mass.
Hand washing is always done in the room and when the weather permits it is renewed in the sacristy.
p. 10 When you are asked to listen to confessions, let each one show himself with a cheerful air, and never use rudeness or make himself known impatiently. Take the children in gentle ways and with great affability. Neither do you overwork or marvel at ignorance or confession.
37-38 "Escape the conferences of the seculars [...] and the conversations especially with people of different sex" - Const. SDB, pp. 110-111. - "Escape the conversation and familiarity with people of another sex or suspicious conduct" - Memories to the missionaries, RSS 3 (1984), p. 207.
59-77 1 ° «To welcome lovingly all sorts of penitents, but especially the young ones. Help them to explain things of their own conscience; insist that they come to confession frequently. And this is the surest way to keep them away from sin. Use all your industry to put into practice the warnings you suggest to prevent relapses. Correct them with kindness, but never excuse them; because today you scold them, and most of them tomorrow they no longer come to see you, or they are silent about what you have harshly reproached them for. 2nd When you are in confidence with them, make your way prudently to investigate if the confessions of the past life are well made. Because some famous authors in moral and ascetic and long experience, and especially an authoritative person who has all the guarantees of the truth, all together agree to say that mostly the first confessions of the youngsters if they are not null, at least they are defective for lack of education, or for voluntary omission of things to confess. The young man is invited to ponder the state of his conscience particularly from seven to ten, to twelve years. At this age one already has knowledge of certain things that are bad, but of which little is taken into account, or the way of confessing them is ignored. The confessor makes use of great prudence and great discretion, but does not omit to ask any questions about the things concerning the holy virtue of modesty »- Biographical note on the young Magone Michele, OE XIII 181-182. or by voluntary omission of things to confess. The young man is invited to ponder the state of his conscience particularly from seven to ten, to twelve years. At this age one already has knowledge of certain things that are bad, but of which little is taken into account, or the way of confessing them is ignored. The confessor makes use of great prudence and great discretion, but does not omit to ask any questions about the things concerning the holy virtue of modesty »- Biographical note on the young Magone Michele, OE XIII 181-182. or by voluntary omission of things to confess. The young man is invited to ponder the state of his conscience particularly from seven to ten, to twelve years. At this age one already has knowledge of certain things that are bad, but of which little is taken into account, or the way of confessing them is ignored. The confessor makes use of great prudence and great discretion, but does not omit to ask any questions about the things concerning the holy virtue of modesty »- Biographical note on the young Magone Michele, OE XIII 181-182. or the way to confess them is ignored. The confessor makes use of great prudence and great discretion, but does not omit to ask any questions about the things concerning the holy virtue of modesty »- Biographical note on the young Magone Michele, OE XIII 181-182. or the way to confess them is ignored. The confessor makes use of great prudence and great discretion, but does not omit to ask any questions about the things concerning the holy virtue of modesty »- Biographical note on the young Magone Michele, OE XIII 181-182.
If you see a need in someone to be educated, it is invited in time and place adapted but separately. p. 11
The things that ordinarily lack in their confession, the fan-65 fans, are the pain of sins and purpose. When one or other of these qualities of conf [essione] is lacking, the child is advised to educate himself by attending the catechism or with printed doctrine if he is able to read and understand what he reads. p. 12
In these doubts, if no serious fault appears, only the blessing can be given.
It is very important and useful for the youth to make sure that never a child starts discontent with us.
On the contrary, always leave yourself with some regaluzzo, with some promise or with some words that animate him to come willingly to find us in confession.
Constantly keep the promises made to children, or at least give some reason why these were not fulfilled.
To correct with fruit, do not reproach others. p. 13
Try to make yourself loved, then you will be easily obeyed.
80 You will never be too severe in the things that serve to preserve morality.
64-65 "What is radically lacking in so many young people who confess is stability in their intentions. They confess but always the same faults, the same upcoming occasions, the same bad habits, the same disobedience, the same neglect of duties "- Letter from Rome 1884, RSS 3 (1984), p. 349.
79 "The educator among the students tries to make himself loved, if he wants to be afraid" - The preventive system, OE XXVIII 442. - "Study to make yourself loved rather than make you fear. Charity and patience constantly accompany you in commanding, in correcting, and ensure that everyone from your deeds and words knows that you seek the good of souls »- Confidential memories, RSS 3 (1984), p. 151.
80-81 "Those young people and those people who in some way knew themselves dangerous in the matter of morality and religion are inexorably moving away from our homes". - Deliberations of the second General Chapter ... 1880, OE XXXIII 67.
When a young man shows signs of a vocation, try to make him a friend. It is indispensable to distance him from bad readings, and from comrades who make obscene speeches. 85
p. 14 With frequent confession and communion you will preserve for your pupil the queen of virtues, the purity of customs.
We live on the charity of our benefactors. When someone makes us some offer, he is always thanked and assure prayers for him. In the common and private prayers our benefactors must always be included and let us always intend to pray that God will give us a hundredfold of their charity even in the present life with health, with p. 15 prosperity in the countryside [,] in business, defend them from all misfortune. 95
Let them note that the most effective work in obtaining the forgiveness of sins and securing eternal life is charity towards the poor children: uni ex minimis to an abandoned child.
It should also be noted that in these times, lacking the financial means to educate the abandoned in faith and good morals, the Virgin Mary became her own protector. He obtains many spiritual and temporal graces for these benefactors, even extraordinary ones! We ourselves are witnesses that many of our distinguished benefactors of poor fortune p. 16 became the very affluent since they began to praise our orphans. 105
The Marquis Fassati repeatedly told me: I do not want you to thank me when I am charitable to your poor children; but I must thank you, o Don Bosco, for which you ask me. Since I began to be generous with you, my luck has tripled
For munificent donations in favor of the poor he was called a "limosiniere banker" or even a "banker of providence". Born April 4, 1785, he died on December 29, 1868, at the age of 83. See biographical notes in the perennial Supplement to the New Popular Encyclopedia ... 1868-1869. Turin, UTET 1870, vol. 29, p. 136.
110 The cav. Cotta himself brought money, saying: The more money I bring to you, the better my operations go. I feel with the fact that the Lord gives me even in the present life the hundredfold of what gift p. 17 for his sake. He was our eminent benefactor until the age of eighty six, when God called him to eternal life to enjoy the fruit of his beneficence there.
It is good to note the name of some benefactors towards whom we will have perpetual gratitude before God and before men.
The Counts Carlo, Eugenio and Francesco de Maistre contin [u] - p. 18 120 to follow their parents' charity, and they are among those who often and generously help us.
The Marquise Fassati Maria, the Countess Carlotta Callori, the Countess Corsi Gabriella (Req [uiem]) are our generous benefactors.
119-121 Carlo, Eugenio and Francesco are sons of Rodolfo De Maistre and Carlotta du Plan de Sieyès. Count Rodolfo de Maistre, son of the famous writer and philosopher Giuseppe, was born on 22 September 1789. He died in Borgo Cornalese on 5 February 1866: see The Temple of Don Bosco, a. XX, n. 12, December 1966, pp. 147-149, which corrects some inaccuracies of MB VIII 298. Don Bosco was his guest in Rome, in Via del Quirinale 49, during the first voyage to the papal city, in 1858. On that occasion, Count Eugenio made him the guide, Commander of the Order Piano, who died on 23-24 July 1908 (BS a. XXXII, n. 9 September 1908, p. 286) and Count Francesco, an officer of the pontifical army. Count Carlo, born on 21 May 1832, was, among other things, a catechist in the Oratory since 1855. He died in Lourdes on 21 July 1897: Salesian Bulletin, 19 (1897), n. 9, sett., P. 235.
122-123 The Marchioness Maria Fassati Roero San Severino was born in 1824 by Rodolfo De Maistre and Carlotta du Plan de Sieyès. Court lady of Queen Maria Adelaide, president of the Ladies of St. Vincent de Paul, she married the Marquis Domenico Fassati at the age of 23 [see above]. For 40 years he was co-worker of Don Bosco and for 16 co-worker of Don Rua. He died in Turin on 4 February 1905. There were more than 20 letters from Don Bosco sent to her, without counting those to the children. See BS a. XXIX, n. March 3, 1905, p. 94. - Countess Gabriella Callori of the counts of Sambuy, wife of Count Federico Callori di Vignale, was born in Turin on 6 September 1827. Lady of the palace of Queen Maria Adelaide, she helped Don Bosco decisively for various enterprises: the foundation of the college of Mirabello, then transported to Borgo S. Martino 7 years later (1870), the edition of the Catholic Provveduto (1868), the churches of Maria Ausiliatrice and of S. Giovanni etc. etc. Living in Casale and spending the good season in Vignale Monferrato, Don Bosco was forced to address her by letter. There have thus reached over 50 holographic letters of the saint, from which it is possible to obtain, in addition to the profound sentiments of esteem and affection for the countess, also very numerous information on the life and works of Don Bosco from 1864 onwards. He died on 13 August 1911: BS 35 (1911) n. 9, Sept., p. 287; Centenary celebrations College «S. Carlo », Borgo San Martino , pp.  - . - The Countess Gabriella Corsi of Bosnasco, born Pelletta di Cossombrato, died in Turin on 8 April 1887. From 1871 to death she distinguished herself as Don Bosco's cooperator, so much so that she deserved the appellation of "good and dear Mother". In particular he subsidized the work of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians in Nizza Monferrato, a place where the Countess had a summer residence. More than 10 letters from Don Bosco to the Countess arrived so far; several others are instead addressed to the daughter: BS 11 (1887) n. 5, May, pp. 58-59. 124-126 Prince Sofia Sofia Odescalchi, born Branicka in Petersburg in 1821, died in Bassano di Sutri, now Bassano Romano, in 1886, a year later her husband, Prince Livio III, whom he had married in 1842 and from whom she had 4 children (Baldassarre, Maria, Pace and Ladislao). The noble Odescalchi family maintained close ties with Don Bosco, especially during the visits of the saint to the Urbe. From the same family Don Bosco received the proposal to open a school in the fief of Bracciano. But the proposal was not followed. - Ms Fanny Ghiglini Polleri, widow since 1877 of Senator Cav. marquis Lorenzo Ghiglini, he was for several years the head of a committee called "Dame della mercy" of Genoa which intended to strengthen the work of good towards the poor, the abandoned youth. He was one of the most deserving cooperators of Don Bosco, especially for the Salesian Institute of Sampierdarena. He died on February 13, 1877: BS 11 (1887) n. 4, April, p. 46. - Baroness Luigia Cataldi-Parodi, along with her family members, was another of the cooperators who most widely contributed to the foundation of the Salesian Hospice in Sampierdarena. Don Bosco had words of blessing for her a month before his death (MB XVIII 503). The Baroness died after a long period of blindness, February 4, 1896: BS 20 (1896) n. 3, March, pp. 79-80. - The Dufour family (Maurizio, Lorenzo, Carlo, Luigi, Amalia etc.) was of great help to the Salesian works of Genoa. Ms. Luigia Pavese Dufour remained in constant correspondence with Don Bosco in the last decade of the saint's life. Further information on the Dufour family and other benefactors of Genoa can be found in S. SCIACCALUGA, Don Bosco in Genoa. Ge-Sampierdarena, Editrice Salesiana 1946, pp. 64-117. ) was of supreme help to the Salesian works of Genoa. Ms. Luigia Pavese Dufour remained in constant correspondence with Don Bosco in the last decade of the saint's life. Further information on the Dufour family and other benefactors of Genoa can be found in S. SCIACCALUGA, Don Bosco in Genoa. Ge-Sampierdarena, Editrice Salesiana 1946, pp. 64-117. ) was of supreme help to the Salesian works of Genoa. Ms. Luigia Pavese Dufour remained in constant correspondence with Don Bosco in the last decade of the saint's life. Further information on the Dufour family and other benefactors of Genoa can be found in S. SCIACCALUGA, Don Bosco in Genoa. Ge-Sampierdarena, Editrice Salesiana 1946, pp. 64-117.
Princess Odescalchi Sofia, from Rome (Req [uiem]); sig [ra] Ghiglini Polleri Fanny of Genoa (Req [uiem]), like the [ra] Luigia 125 p.19 Cataldi, Luigia Dufour are of this number.
In Nizza Marittima we must consider the glorious names of Mr [ra] Visconti, Barone Heraud, cav. Vincenzo Levrot, Mr [ra] Daprotis. Mr and M.me de la Flechiere, Hyvères, have done and do.
130 But our great benefactor of Toulon is Mr. Count Fleury Colle and Mrs. [Ra] Countess of his wife. They have truly benefited our congregation, and if we could found houses, schools and advance our missions of America, we must Fr. 20 to their charity.
135 Marseilles owes its foundation to the lords of the Beaujour society, to the generous Mrs. Prat, to mad [ame] Jacques, mad [ame] Broquier and to Mrs. [ra] Pasquè who generously donated the house and the land where we presently started for our use our little novitiate of St. Margaret also called of Providence.
127-129 Marguerite Visconti, of Bordeaux, nee Labat, lived in Piedmont until her husband, an officer of the Sardinian army, retired. He then moved to Nice, where the children of the patronage St. Pierre (but also Don Bosco) will call her maman: MB XIII 720, E III 414, Bulletin Salésien 8 (1886) n. 9, Sept., p. 104. His death dates back to April-May 1892: Bulletin Salésien 14 (1892)
n. 5, May, p. 80. In Don Cartier's testimony given to Don Cena (MB XIII 720) it is instead brought forward to January-February 1891. - Baron Héraud de Chateauneuf, member of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, commander of the order of S Gregorio Magno, secret waiter of His Holiness Leo XIII, was a personal friend of Don Bosco and a very effective supporter of the Salesian work in Nice since its inception. He died on October 23, 1902: Bulletin Salésien 24 (1902) n. 282, Dec., p. 334. There are several letters from Don Bosco to the baron and Baroness Héraud. See also various references to them and to other benefactors of Nizza Marittima in F. DESRAMAUT, Don-Bosco à Nice. Paris, ADE 1980. - The cav, Vincenzo Levrot, to whom Don Bosco, among other things, wrote several letters, was one of the greatest benefactors of the Salesian opera of Nice Marittima. He died December 13, 1912: Bulletin Salésien 34 (1912) n. February 2, pp. 53-54. Cfr. F. DESRAMAUT, Don-Bosco à Nice, op. cit. passim. - Pure sig.ra Daprotis, more often referred to in the letters of Don Bosco to Don Giuseppe Ronchail, to the other beneficiaries was remembered by don Bosco, the most affectionate of «mamma».
130-134 The spouses Colle, her husband Giuseppe Luigi Henry, count Romano (died January 1, 1888) and his wife Sofia (died March 28, 1909) are among the most famous figures of the last years of Don Bosco's life. Suffice it to mention the dozens of letters sent by the saint to their family; it should be added that Don Bosco signed the life of his son: Biographie du jeune Louis Fleury Antoine Colle ..., Turin, imprimerie salésienne 1882. Short profiles are offered by Bulletin Salésien 10 (1888) n. 2, February, pp. 16-18 for the count, and BS 33 (1909) n. 9, Sept., pp. 286-287 for the countess.
135-139 The Beaujour Society of Marseilles was "made up of excellent Catholics" and had "the purpose of favoring charitable institutions for the benefit of youth in danger": MB XIII 526. The other persons mentioned are benefactors in constant relationship with Don Bosco, who sometimes he sends them to greet through the director of Marseilles, Don Giuseppe Bologna, and this time he reaches them personally with an autograph letter. Ms Anna Prat-Noilly died in the summer of 1902: Bulletin Salésien 24 (1902) n.280, Nov., p. 280. Of it the ASC keeps a letter dated 27 July 1883 in which it thanks Don Bosco for the Mass he promised to celebrate on St. Anne's Day, the lady's name day. - Ms Jacques died on 3 February 1915 at the age of 89: Bulletin Salésien 37 (1915) n. 423, April-June, p. 51.
p. 21 The Quisard family of Lyon, the cons. 140, are also noteworthy benefactors
tessa of the Reserve, the sig [ra] Desvernay religiosa del Sacro Cuore to the English. The mark [of S. Seine, Dijon, cont [essa] Parque ditto, [vice] contessa [de] Cessac (Req [uiem]), Parigi, Mad [emoise] the Louvet Clara, Aire sur le Lys.
Many then made generous offers following graces received, and 145 others offered money or different substances in nature.
p. 22 These are the names of some of the most noteworthy of our benefactors today 8 Feb. [raio] 1885.
140-144 The Quisard family (Guisard for Don Bosco) was bound by a constant and sincere affection with the saint. Proof of this are the numerous letters from Don Bosco: E IV 435446. - Madame Marie Desvernay, a religious of the "Sacred Heart" of Lyons had generously helped Don Bosco, especially in financing missionary expeditions in the 1980s. A special correspondence between Don Bosco and the religious of Lyon is still unpublished. - The Marchioness of Saint-Seine, on 10 April 1883, had become the spokesperson for a group of people from Dijon so that Don Bosco would spend some time with them on his trip to France: ASC 126-1 Saint-Seine, and . in MB XVI 558559. - Countess De Cessac-Montesquiou and her husband were outstanding benefactors of the patronage St. Pierre-St. Paul from Paris, which owes its second name (Paolo) to the son of the De Cessac who died at the age of 25. The countess, court lady of the empress Eugenia, died on May 24, 1886, a few months after the death of the count, who had occupied prestigious positions at the time of the Empire. Strangely, MB XVII 611 date the death of the countess "in the autumn" of 1886. The source of the Lemoyne (Bulletin Salésien 8 [18861 n. 11, Nov., P. 127) stated: "le jour méme de Notre-Dame Auxiliatrice ». - Mademoiselle Clara Louvet: cooperator of extraordinary generosity with Don Bosco and his successors. Don Bosco's correspondence with her received several dozen letters published and many unpublished works covering the last six years of the saint's life. In them can be found precise indications of spiritual life. The Louvet died at 80, 11 November 1912: Bulletin Salésien 35 (1913) n. 1, January, p. 27. An entire chapter of MB XV 584-610 is dedicated to her.
148 1885 torr ex 1884. See also line 173-175. For reasons of internal and external order it seems to be absolutely ruled out that the editing of the first pages took place in the 1940s, as the dates 1841, 1842, 1845, given respectively on pages 6, 7 and 9, might suggest at first sight. dates refer to the years to which the resolutions and the teachings transcribed there date, that is the first years of priesthood. On the other hand the title is explicit: "Memories from 1884 ...". Therefore the MB should be corrected in various parts, eg. vol. II p. 313.
If [for] the divine mercy after my death and for the protection of Mary I will be made worthy to be received in the eternal kingdom, I will always pray for all and especially for those of our benefactors that God may bless them, their families, so that all may be one day to sing and praise the Majesty I of the Creator forever. p. 23 Amen.
At the time of my death the Chapter is assembled, and it is regularly ready for any eventuality, and no one moves away except for absolutely necessary reasons.
My vicar agrees with the prefect to prepare and read in Chapter 160 a letter to be addressed to all the confreres in which news of my death is given, they recommend prayers for me, and for the good choice of my successor.1
1 It is believed that these pages were written in September [embr. 1884 before the Holy Father nominated a vicar with succession, therefore it should be modified how much he will do.
Establish the day for the election of the new Rett [or] Major and Fr. 24 give time for those from America and other distant countries to be able to come to grips in case they are not for serious reasons absolutely prevented.
I notice two things of the utmost importance here:
1 ° Capitular deliberations are kept secret, and if you have anything to communicate to others, it is someone who has been appropriately appointed. p. 25 But he is careful not to appoint any member of the 170th Chapter who has given the affirmative or negative vote, or has uttered such a sentence or word.
2) It is considered as a principle never to vary not to keep any property of stable things except the houses and the adjacencies that are necessary for the health of the confreres or the healthiness of the students.
156-165 "As soon as the Rector dies, the Prefect immediately advises the directors of all the houses, who will immediately take care of him, so that the deceased may receive those votes, which are prescribed by the Constitutions. Then invite the same directors to gather for the election of the new Rector "- Constitution SDB, pp. 128-129.
p. 26 The preservation of fruit-bearing buildings is an insult that is done to the divine providence that in a marvelous and prodigious way I will constantly come to the aid.
In allowing for the construction or repair of houses great rigor is used in preventing luxury, magnificence, elegance.
Since it will begin [to] appear comfort in the person, p. 27 in the rooms or in the houses, the decadence of our congregation begins at the same time.
Having made my burial, my vicar understood with the prefect, tell me all my confreres these last thoughts of my mortal life.
176-178 "But it recommends everyone to avoid the construction or purchase of buildings, which are not strictly necessary for our use. Never things to resell; not fields or land, or dwellings to make money from them "- Lett. to Msgr. Giovanni Cagliero, E IV 328.
182-183 «In the form of the buildings, in the choice of materials, in the workforce, in the execution of the works, in the interior ornaments religious poverty is never forgotten. It offends the eyes of honest people by seeing elegance and refinement in the buildings, in the furnishings. and in the preparations of table with whom they usually ask for charity "- Deltberations of the General Chapter ... 1877, OE XXIX 444-445. 184-186 "Read Ecclesiastical History, and you will find endless examples, from which it results that the abundance of temporal goods was always the cause of the loss of entire communities, which, for not having faithfully preserved their first spirit of poverty, fell in the colander of the misfortunes »- MB VI 328-329.
188-222 "Meanwhile, you receive these rules as a testament made for the whole Congregation. You then receive these thoughts that precede them as memories, which I leave you, before leaving for my eternity, to which I realize approaching with great steps. Recommend the salvation of my soul to the Lord, and I will pray constantly for you too, so that with the exact observance of our constitutions we can live happily in time, and for the sake of his infinite mercy he grants us all to one day to enjoy and praise him in blessed eternity "- Rules or Constitutions of the Society of St. Francis de Sales 1875. Introduction, OE XXVII 49-50. - «This is like a Testament that I address to the Directors of the Special Houses. If these notices are put into practice, I die peacefully because I am sure that our Society will be ever more prosperous in the face of men and blessed by the Lord, and will achieve its purpose which is the greater glory of God and the salvation of souls "- Confidential reminders, RSS 3 (1984) , pp. 159-160. «0 my dear children, the time is approaching in which I will have to detach myself from you and leave for my eternity. Therefore I long to leave you, priests, or clerics, or dear young people for that way of the Lord in which he himself desires »Letter from Rome 1884, RSS 3 (1984), pp. 188-191. - "While on the other hand the votes increase in such a way the merit of our works, we must give ourselves the utmost solicitude not to neglect them [... 1. We therefore prepare ourselves well for this heroic consecration, but when the
190 My dear and beloved children in GC
Before leaving for my eternity I must fulfill some duties towards you and thus satisfy a lively desire of my heart. p. 28
First of all, I thank you with the most heartfelt affection for the obedience you have given me, and for what you have worked to support and propagate our congregation.
I leave you here on earth, but only for a while. I hope that the infinite mercy of God will make that we can all find ourselves one day in the blessed eternity. I await you there.
I recommend you not to cry my death. This is a debt p. 29 200 that we must all pay, but afterwards there will be greatly rewarded every effort sustained for our Master's sake our good Jesus.
Instead of crying, make firm and effective resolutions to remain firm in the vocation until death.
205 Watch and make that neither the love of the world, nor the affection for relatives nor the desire for a more affluent life m [u] ovano to the great inappropriateness p. 30 to profane the sacred vows and thus betray the religious profession with which we have consecrated ourselves to the Lord. No one takes up what we have given to God.
210 If you loved me in the past, continue to love me in the future with the exact observance of our constitutions.
Your first Rector is dead. But our true superior [,] Christ Jesus, will not die. He will always be our Master, our guide, our model; but you believe that in his time he himself will be our judge and rewarder of our fidelity in his first service. p. 31 Your Rector is dead, but another will be elected who will take care of you and your eternal salvation. Listen to him, love him, obey him, pray for him, as you did for me.
Goodbye, dear children, goodbye. I await you in heaven. There speak of God, of Mary the mother and support of our congregation; there we will forever bless our congregation, whose observance is Fr. 32 of the rules contributed powerfully and effectively to save us.
210-211 Cf. 15.10 to 14.
Is the name of the Lord from now and forever. At let me not be confounded.
After my burial, the voters gathered and gathered at the appointed place will accomplish the prescribed things both for the deceased Rector's suffrages and for effecting the imminent election and recognition of Fr. 33 new superior of the congregation.
It is good that everything is tostely communicated to the Holy Father and asks for a special blessing over this most important act.
Each then without paying attention to human affection, to hopes of any kind, gives his vote to the one whom he considers most suitable on p. 34 to procure the greater glory of God and the advantage of our pious society. Therefore: 235
1) That he is known for his punctuality in observing our rules.
2 ° Never be mixed in affairs that have compromised him in the face of the civil or ecclesiastical authorities or have made him odious or despicable in the face of the partners of our own 240 companies.
3rd Known for his attachment to the Holy See and for all the Fr. 35 things that somehow refer to that.
Once the election is complete and the new Rector Major is known, all the electors will kiss his hand, then they will put on their knees, they will sing the Te Deum. Then they will give a sensitive sign of submission by renewing the vows as is done at the time of spiritual exercises.
221-222 "From the exact observance of our Constitutions and these deliberations, which are like their practical application, the development and spiritual profit of our pious Society and its members depends for the most" - Deliberations of the second Chapter General ... 1880, OE XXXIII 4.
223 Ps. 113.2.
224 Ps. 31,2 out italics.
236-243 "In order for any one to be elected Rector Major, it is required that he have lived at least ten years in the Congregation, has a thirty-five year task, and has given doubtful proof of an exemplary life and skill and prudence in sending the shops of the Congregation, and finally be perpetually professed "- Const. SDB, pp. 130-113.
The new Rector M [adds]
250 1 ° He will address some words to the voters, he will thank them for the trust placed in him and he will assure them that he wants to be the father of everyone, Fr. 36 the friend, the brother, asks for their cooperation, and, where appropriate [,] their advice.
2 ° He will soon give the news of his election to the Holy Father and offer himself and the Salesian society to the orders, to the councils of the supreme hierarch of the Church.
3) A circular letter will be issued to all the confreres and another to the daughters of Mary Help of Christians.
4th Other letter will write to our benefactors and to our - p. 37 260 co-operators [aunt] from my side of what they did for us while I lived on earth; asking them to continue their help in support of Salesian works. I always in the firm hope of being welcomed in the mercy of the Lord, from there I will pray incessantly for them.
265 But it should be noted, let's say, and always preach that Maria Au [silencer] has always obtained and will get the details thanks, even extraordinary and minor. 38 for those who contribute to giving Christian education to the unsafe youth with works, with advice, with a good example or simply with prayer.
270 Once these first and important duties have been fulfilled, the new Rector should turn with full care to know the financial status of the congregation. Examine whether there are debts and when to pay.
It is good that at least for some time no new ones should be opened. 39 275 homes, nor do new buildings begin, not even new works that are not strictly necessary.
In my particular, then I recommend that the debts left by the deceased Rector be not decimated. This would indicate a mismanagement in the administrators and in the same superior; and would cause some dif [ffidence in public opinion. I 280
259-269 Fr Rua will execute Don Bosco's invitation by sending a circular letter to the "good benefactors" and "good benefactors" on April 23, 1888. The BS of April 1888 announced it as a letter found among the autograph papers of don Bosco "to be sent" after his death. In reality Don Bosco's intervention was limited to the few lines reproduced above, which served as a trace to the true editor, identified by Don Ceria in Don Bonetti (see E IV 393, note). For historical honesty, therefore, the authorship of the quotations from this "testament" should be better attributed to thousands of images, newsletters, newsletters, printed matter distributed throughout the "Salesian world" and others.
If at the election of the new Rett [hours] any member of the Chapter is missing, the Rector uses his right and completes the number with alternate councilors for the time that must run before the six-year period set for the general election of individual councilors or 285 members of the Chapter.
But the important memory and that I consider fundamental is of p. 41 to ensure that no member has any extraneous or unintended duties to the administration of our pious society. On the contrary, I believe that we do not say too much that our congregation will always have a void until the individual members of the Chapter are not exclusively occupied with the things set by the regulation approved in the Chapter deliberations.
It is therefore necessary to overcome many difficulties, but make sacrifices and grant this great benefit to the whole congregation.
The Rector M [read more] read and put into practice the usual warnings to give myself to all the directors of new houses, especially at the time due to rest and! ' to nourishment. 300
The director of each house should have patience and study the people well or better I will examine how much the confreres who work p. 43 below him. Exact what they are capable of and no more.
282-286 "If any one of the Chapter ceases from his office or through death or for any other cause before the six years are completed, the major Rector will entrust his disengagement to the one he will judge best in the Lord; he will then remain in office until the end of the six-year term started by the member who left office "- Constitution SDB, p. 155.
298-300 These are confidential memories, RSS 3 (1984), pp. 125-166.
302-307 "Proxy to share things so that no one is too burdened with duties, but let each one faithfully fulfill those entrusted to him" - Confidential Memories, RSS 3 (1984), p. 158. - "Never command things that you consider superior to the forces of subordinates, or expect not to be obeyed. Make sure to avoid the repugnant commands, on the contrary, take the utmost care to uphold the inclinations of each one, preferably entrusting those Uffizi which to some know each other are more appreciated »- Confidential confidential, RSS 3 (1984), p. 159.
305 It is essential that he knows the regulation that each confrere must practice in the office entrusted to him; therefore everyone has at his disposal at least that part of the rules that concern him.
His solicitude is especially addressed to the moral relations of the masters, assistants among them and with the students entrusted to them. THE
1st I strongly recommend all my children to watch both in speaking and in writing that they never tell or assert that Don Bosco received grace from God or worked miracles in any way. He would make a damaging mistake.
315 Though the goodness of God has been generously toward me, I nevertheless have never claimed to know or operate supernatural things. 45 natural. I have done nothing but pray and ask the Lord to ask for graces from good souls. I have always experienced the prayers and communions of our young people.
320 compassionate God and his Mother SS. they came to our aid. This occurred especially whenever we needed to provide for our poor and abandoned youths, and more anchors. 46 when they were in danger of their souls.
308-309 "The masters, the chiefs of art, the assistants must be of known morality. The misleading of one can compromise an educational institute "- The preventive system, OE XXVIII 53-54. - «Realizing that some of them contract a particular friendship with some pupil, or that the office entrusted to him, or his morality is in danger, with great prudence will change his job; if the danger continues, you will soon give notice to your Superior »- Confidential reminders, RSS 3 (1984), p. 153.
311-323 "Don Bosco [...] would be the last of men if he assumed such power. Extraordinary thanks certainly have been granted; but the Holy Virgin has done for the benefit of our works "- MB XV 502. -" For some time we have been saying and also publishing in the newspapers that Don Bosco is working miracles. This is a mistake. Don Bosco has never claimed and never said to work miracles, and none of his children should contribute to propagating this false idea. We say clearly how things are: Don Bosco prays and has his young people pray [...] and God in his infinite goodness most often grants the graces demanded, sometimes even extraordinary and miraculous. But Don Bosco has so little to do that often graces are obtained without his knowing anything about it "- MB XVI 292. - «He preaches to all great and small that they always remember that they are children of Maria SS. Help. That she gathered them here to lead them away from the dangers of the world, so that they might love each other as brothers and give glory to God and to her with their good conduct. What is the Madonna what they provide bread and means of studying with infinite graces and portents »Letter from Rome 1884, RSS 3 (1984), p. 350.
2. The Holy Virgin Mary will certainly continue to protect our congregation [action] and Salesian works, if we continue our trust in her and we will continue to promote her worship. Her feasts, and even more her solemnities, her novenas, her triduums, the month consecrated to her, are always warmly inculcated in public and in p. 47 private; with the leaflets, with the books, with me The gods, with the images, with publishing or simply telling the graces and blessings [ion] that this heavenly benefactor of ours at any moment grants to the suffering [e] er humanity.
3 ° Two sources of grace for us are: to recommend in advance on all the occasions we can use to inculcate to our young students that in honor of Mary they approach saints or to practice at least some works of piety.
Listening with devotion to the Holy Mass, the visit to Jesus Fr. 48 As a matter of fact the frequent sacramental or at least spiritual communion is most pleasing to Mary, and a powerful means to obtain special graces. 340
God called the poor Salesian Congregation to promote ecclesiastical vocations among poor and low-status youth.
Families in general are too mixed in the spirit of the world, from which unfortunately the 345 p. 49 their children The men, who thus lose the principle of vocation that God has placed in their hearts. If this spirit is cultivated, and developed, it comes to maturity and yields abundant fruit. On the contrary, not only the seed of vocation, but often the same vocation already born and begun under good auspices, suffocates or weakens 350 and is lost.
342-343 "Since then there are many and serious dangers to youth, which aspires to the ecclesiastical state, this society will give the utmost care to cultivate in pity those who show special aptitude for study, and would be commendable for good morals" - Const. SDB, pp. 76-77. - «The purpose of our colleges is to form good Christians, and honest citizens; it is not a question, therefore, of straining on the ecclesiastical state those who do not have a vocation to it, but of cultivating it and developing it in young men who gave it clear signs »- Deliberations of the second General Chapter ... 1880, OE XXXIII 65.
The newspapers, the bad books, the comrades and the non-reserved speeches in the family are often fatal reasons for the loss of vocations and not infrequently are the fault I and the misleading of - p. 50 355 those who have already made the choice of the state.
Let us remember that we give a great treasure to the Church when we procure a good vocation: that this vocation or this priest goes to a diocese, to missions or to a religious house does not matter. It is always a great treasure that is given to the Church of 360 GC
But do not give advice to any young man, if he is not sure of preserving the angelic virtue in the degree established by Fr. 51 healthy theology. One moves over the mediocrity of genius, but never about the lack of virtue of which we speak.
Cultivate the work of M [aria] SS. A [usiser] according to the program you already know.
For lack of means you never cease to receive a young man who gives good hope of vocation.
370 Spend all that you have, if you do crafts go to seek, and if after that I find you in need do not worry, for the p. 52 St. Virgin somehow, even prodigiously, will come to her aid.
352-355 «Students should be carefully advised to escape from bad companions and to attend good; to refrain from reading not only bad and dangerous books, but also from useless or less appropriate "- Deliberations of the second General Chapter ... 1880, OE XXXIII 66.
356-360 "The thing that I have warmly recommended to those, who in these days I have been able to write, is the culture of vocations, both of the Salesians and of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians. Study, make plans, pay no attention to expenses, as long as you get some priests to the Church, especially for the Missions "- Letter to Don Luigi Lasagna, E IV 341. 365-372" The work of the Sons of Mary for vocations to the ecclesiastical state. The Chapter recommends that all the Members try to make it known and to promote it, and if they know some young people, who have the requisites of the required program, try to address them to those houses where the appropriate studies are done »- Deliberations of the second General Chapter. .. 1880, OE XXXIII 70. - The The aim of Mary Help of Christians was "to gather young grandchildren [commonly called 'Sons of Mary'] who had a firm will to do literary studies through appropriate courses, to embrace the ecclesiastical state" - Cf. MB XI 529- 535. See also Work of Mary Help of Christians ... 1877, OE XXIX 1-28.
The work, the good and strict conduct of our confreres earn and, as it were, drag their students to follow their examples. 375
Let us make pecuniary and personal sacrifices, but practice the preventive system and we will have vocations in abundance.
p. 53 If they cannot be annihilated, at least let them reduce the number of vacation days as much as possible.
Patience and sweetness, the Christian relationships of the masters with 380 students, will gain many vocations between them. But here too great attention is paid to never accepting among members, much less for the eclectic state, if there is no moral certainty that angelic virtue is preserved.
374-375 "The exemplary, pious, exact life of the Salesians, the charity among them, the beautiful manners and the sweetness with the students are effective means to cultivate vocations to the ecclesiastical state, because, verba movent, exempla trahunt" - Deliberations of the according to General Chapter ... 1880, OE XXXIII 65.
376-381 "And first of all I see it necessary that we treat each other with much charity and sweetness and use the same treatment with all the partners. From this charity and sweetness among us the young would already be very ingagata to our kind of life because it is of the nature of the man and especially of the youth to love and try to embrace that kind of life that leads the one who like and venerate. Then when this sweetness of ours after having shown itself to the confreres pouring over the same pupils themselves, they remain as electrified and we would gain much from their affection and then on their vocation [...] I say therefore and I repeat the sweetness, the charity between we and with them are the most powerful means to educate them well and to cultivate vocations »—ASC Minutes of the 2nd General Chapter ... 1880,
378-379 «For the time of the holidays, according to the notices that are usually distributed printed, the frequency of the SS. Sacraments and assistance to religious functions, and also to hold letters with one's superiors. The necessity of a life withdrawn in time of vacation is persuaded and an attempt is made to diminish their dwelling outside of college, giving convenience to continue the holidays in any of our houses, with the necessary reliefs »- Deliberations of the 2nd General Chapter. .. 1880, OE XXXIII 66-67.
378-401 "How then can we cultivate the seed of the vocation that the Lord has placed in the bosom of many in these times of general corruption? The need to start early and then not lose sight of them was noted first of all; to shorten the holidays as much as possible, and to recommend a lot that even at home they sometimes go to the Sacraments and do not attend bad companies. Don Bosco added: "The seed of the vocation the Lord puts in the hearts of many and we see the youngsters as long as they are good to love and aspire to the ecclesiastical state, but they seem to see the Lord withdrawing when the young man lets himself go to sin and especially when the treasure of chastity is lost "" - ASC Minutes of the 2nd General Chapter ... 1880, Barberis notebook.
385 Then when the director of some of our houses sees a student of simple costumes, I of good character, try to make him a friend. p. 54 He often addresses a few words to him, listens willingly to him in confession, commends himself to his prayers; assure him that he prays for him at Holy Mass; invite him, for example, to perform Holy Communion in 390 honor of the BV or in suffrage of the souls in purgatory, for his relatives, for his studies and the like.
At the end of high school I persuade him to choose that vocation, Fr. 55 that place which he judges most advantageous for his soul and which will console him more on his deathbed.
395 Compare the things of conscience and observe if they went better at home, in time of vacation, or in college etc.
But he studies to prevent the eclectic [vocation] vocation in those who want to embrace it in order to help their family because it was poor. In these cases, I recommend that I embrace something else - p. 56 400 state, another profession, an art, a trade, but not the eclectic state.
For aspirants we here mean those youngsters who wish to form a Christian standard of life that makes them worthy at the time to embrace the Salesian congress [eg] or as ch [i] erici or as coadjutor brothers.
Special diligence is used for them. But those who have the intention of becoming Salesians or at least I are not opposed to it should be kept in this number, when such is the will of God. P. 57
410 Let them have a special conference at least twice a month.
In these conferences it is a question of how a young person should practice or flee to become a good Christian. The 'Young Provveduto' administers the main arguments on this subject.
415 However, they are not told about our rules in particular, nor about the vows, nor about leaving home or relatives; they are things that will come into your heart without reasoning.
Keep the great principle firmly in mind: we must give ourselves to God or sooner Fr. 58 or later, and God calls blessed the one who begins [to] consecrate himself to the Lord in his youth. Beatus homo cum portaverit jugum ab adole- 420 scentia sua.
413-414 G. Bosco, The young man provided for the practice of his duties in the exercises of Christian piety ... Turin 1847. Living Don Bosco came to the 120th edition: OE II 183-532; XXXV 130-684. 418-424 "If we do not leave the world out of love, we will have to leave it by force" - Rules or Constitutions ... 1875, OE XXVII 31. See also the entire paragraph "Promptly follow the vocation" in Rules or Constitutions. .. S. Benigno Canavese 1885, pp. 9-11. See I Jn. 2,16-17.
The world then, with all its flattery, relatives, friends, home, or sooner or later or out of love or by force must abandon everything and leave it forever.
Proven and known aspirants as above can easily be received among the ascribed. Not so of those who [were] living or doing studies outside our homes. For these the rules established by our constitutions for aspirants are faithfully followed. I 430
p. 59 Ascent or novices
The time of real trial or ascription or novitiate for us is like a sieve for knowing good wheat and retaining it if it is convenient. On the contrary, we did not have good grass and then with the volva and the grass we throw out of our garden. 435
Note well that our congregation was not founded for those who had led a worldly life and then wanted to come to us to convert. Our congreg [action] is not made for them. We need secure and proven partners in secular life. They are fools not to perfect their med [esi] but to exercise Christian perfection and to free from the immense and serious dangers in which poor and abandoned children are generally found; p. 60 for those children who were already unhappy victims of human misery or who have already been shipwrecked in terms of religion and in the same customs, they either do not become priests or are sent to formal orders or penitents.
420-421 Lam. 3.27.
436-446 "One thing that in acceptances must always be held as a basis and must give rule to all acceptance is that our congregation is not a reformatory of morals: those who have many bad habits and vices and want to convert and do penance can enter in another religious order; for there are many established for this purpose but it is not to be accepted among us. Ours is instituted in a special way to give help to the next [... 1 - ASC Minutes of the 2nd General Chapter ... 1880, Barberis notebook.
In the year of probation, health, morality, and science are well observed, and the exact account is given to the Superior Chapter. But the director of the novitiate is careful to never present for acceptance those 450 novices of whom he was conscientiously not sure of morality. THE
For acceptance, the norms prescribed by the Holy Church, by our constitutions, by the capitulars, are followed, both for acceptance into the novitiate and for the final acceptance of the 455 religious profession.
Let's say pros and cons of each candidate, but the vote is always secret so that one member of the Chapter does not know the vote of the other.
460 In resignation we must imitate the gardener who weeds and throws harmful or simply useless herbs and plants out of his garden.
But mind you that often the meticulous conscience makes us fear - p. 62 of the vocation even when there is no reason to fear. Therefore let us examine the reason or reasons for which the resignation is requested. Nor is it granted unless it is claimed by serious reason: that is, when the abode of the member in the congregation returns to serious spiritual or even temporal damage to himself or to the congreg [action] itself.
470 In such cases it is observed whether a discharge at tempus is sufficient or must be absolute. But in any case, all concerns are used to resign p. 63 and sacrifices are also made so that the member starts with good harmony and friend of the congreg [action]. But in the ordinary way, they should no longer be held with him if not the relations that concern the good Christian. Nor does he offer hospitality except in cases of true and known need 475 and momentan [eamen] you.
447-450 «Before accepting an inscription, make sure information about his previous moral conduct is taken. It will sometimes be possible to compromise on science and material interest, but never around moral qualities "- Deliberations of the General Chapter ... 1877, OE XXIX 420.
451-455 "Upon acceptance of an aspirant, it is to be noted that he is in good health and of good physical constitution; and those who are called to give news to this purpose, seek to have them exact, and in general do not give a vote of acceptance to those candidates who cannot conform to the common life, and perform all the Uffizi and the works that are proper of our Congregation. The sick with three-year grades are not charged to the Congregation, except during the three-year period, after which, if health does not involve continuing, they can be postponed. But the perpetually professed, being effective members of the Congregation, are entirely the responsibility of the same, especially those who worked a lot, or otherwise did good for our Society "- Deliberations of the General Chapter ... 1877, OE XXIX 410- 411.
When you leave us a partner helps you find a job or at least some place where he can earn honest livelihood.
Every effort is made to preserve common life. I - 480 superions command and demand what each one can do and no more.
p. 64 When, however, an ascetic is lacking in health to fulfill the duties our rules prescribe, we cannot accept the religious profession, and if his illness seems to be chronic, it is returned to the paternal family. 485
When it comes to a professed person, he is considered among us and due respect is given to him. But never forget that we are poor and no one claims to be superior to the condition of a person who is consecrated to God with the vow of poverty.
However, very special regards must be used to those who with their 490 labors and otherwise have brought considerable advantage to the congregation. In fact, if they can benefit from the change of climate, food, or go to the native air, this should be done, but always with p. 65 doctor's advice.
But these considerations are limited to the time of sickness and congenescence, and it is to be noted that these considerations do not become a second table. This would be the plague of common life. Therefore, if a convalescent can be returned to the table of the confreres, this should be done, but every time special care should be taken in occupations, nor should he be entrusted with work exceeding his strength. 500
479-481 "Maximum solicitude in promoting common life with words and facts" - Confidential memories, RSS 3 (1984), p. 158. - "Never command things that you consider superior to the forces of the subordinates, or expect not to be obeyed" - Confidential reminders, RSS 3 (1984), p. 159. - "Take care of health. Work, but only when your own strengths lead "- Memories to missionaries, RSS 3 (1984), p. 207. - "Common life is the bond that sustains religious institutions, preserves them in the fervor or observance of their Constitutions. Therefore we must give ourselves care to introduce it perfectly, preserve it and have it observed among us very accurately [...] "- Deliberations of the General Chapter ... 1877, OE XXIX 401.
In this important affair we practice supreme charity, prudence and energy, but in everything always the due discretion, charity and sweetness.
505 In my sermons, in speeches and printed books I have always done what he could to support, defend and propagate Catholic principles.
However, if a few sentences were found in them, some words that even contained only a doubt or were not sufficiently explained the truth, I intend to revise, rectify every thought, or feeling not exact.
In general, then I submit every saying, letter, or press to any decision, correction, or simple advice of the holy mother p. 67 Catholic Church.
As for prints and reprints I recommend more things:
515 1 Some of my operettas were published without my assistance and others against my will, so I recommend to my successor that he make or make a catalog of all my operettas, but of the last edition of each, and if a reprint is traded. .
2 ° Where errors of spelling, chronology, language, or 520 of meaning are found to be corrected for the sake of science and religion.
3 ° If you ever happen to print some of my Italian letters, use great care in the sense and in the doctrine, because most p. 68 part were written hastily and therefore with the danger of many inaccuracies.
525 The French letters can then be burned; but if anyone ever wanted to print them, I recommend that they be read and corrected by some connoisseur of that French language, so that words do not express an unwanted sense and cause the mockery or contempt for religion in whose favor they were written to fall.
504-533 "If anything in my writings or printed matter could be found anything that could or could be interpreted in the least contrary to the holy Catholic, apostolic, Roman Church, I intend to retract it, because I protest to want to live and die in this church which alone preserves the religion of Jesus Christ, the only true, unique saint out of whom no one can save himself. In the event that any of the aforementioned booklets were reprinted after my death, I recommend that this be done using the latest edition. May the Lord God accept my weak efforts in publishing these writings in reparation for the scandal given in life; and his infinite mercy forgives me my sins, and grants me to live and die in his grace by blessing those young people whom divine providence has entrusted to me in some way »- Testament of the sac. Bosco Gioanni, Turin 26 July 1856, ASC 132 Testament. Published in MB X 1332-1333.
p. 69 Who then possessed news or facts held by heart or collected with shorthand, are carefully examined and corrected so that nothing is published that does not exactly conform to the principles of our holy Catholic religion.
p. 117 At mad.me Prat de Marseille
I thank you for your charity. God reward you widely. Our 535 p. 118 sisters and our students of the apostolic work are your children who will pray for you. Help them.
O Mary, please guide this benefactress in the path of paradise.
Pray for my soul
humble servant 540
Turin Abbot J. Bosco
Mr and Mrs The Coast and the Colle Colle Toulon
I wait for you where the good God has prepared for us the grand prize, the eternal happiness
with our dear Louis. I 545
p. 119 Divine mercy will grant it to us. Be forever the support of the Salesian congregation and the help of our missions. God bless you affectionate as son
Turin abbot J. Bosco 550
Mad.11e Rose of Gas - Marseille
May the Virgin Mary protect you forever.
I entrust you with our sisters and our poor orphans. Pray for the soul of
your obligated servant 555
Turin Abbot J. Bosco
p. 120 To Jacques, our mother in JC
God calls me to eternity. I hope that the mercy of God will keep you a place for you in paradise. But continue your broad protection 560 to our sisters and our orphans.
534 Madame Prat: see line 136.
542-543 Monsieur and Madame le Corate and Countess Colle: vedi linee 130-131.
551 Mademoiselle Rose du Gas (other times for Don Bosco du Gaz or Dugaz): see E IV 121, 188.
557 Madame Jacques: see line 136.
May Mary protect you and please pray forever for the poor soul of the poor abbot
Turin Jean Bosco I
Sig.a march. Maria Fassati p. 121
565 I thank you, Mr. [a] marchesa, for the charity you gave me during my mortal life. If God will receive me in his mercy, I will pray so much for you.
Your protection for our orphans will be an extremely effective means of securing your paradise.
Please pray for this ancient but always affez [ionatissi] mo friend of home 570 Fassati
Turin poor sac. Gio. Bosco I
Sig. [ra] Baroness Azeglia Ricci p. 122
Mrs. Azeglia, continue to protect our apostolic work, and you will have many souls saved by our missionaries who will take you to heaven.
575 0 Maria, guide this your daughter and Mr. her husband B. Carlo to enjoy both of them the real reward of their perseverance in the good in heaven one day.
Pray for the time my soul p. 123
Turin sac. Gio. Bosco
580 Sig. Barone Feliciano Ricci
O Mr Baron, you absolutely must save your soul; but you must give all the superfluous to the poor, what the Lord has given you. I pray to God to grant you this extraordinary grace.
I hope we will see each other in the blessed eternity.
585 Pray for the salvation of my soul. p. 124
obbl.mo in G.C.
Turin sac. Gio. Bosco
564 Marchesa Maria Fassati: see line 122.
572 Baroness Azelia Ricci: daughter of the Marquis Domenico Fassati and of the countess Maria De Maistre-Fassati [see line 119] was born in 1846 and died in Turin on 7 September 1921: BS 45 (1921) n. 10, Oct., p. 279. Her husband, Carlo Ricci des Ferres, was born in 1847 and died in 1925: BS 49 (1925) n. 3, March, p. 83.
580 Baron Feliciano Ippolito Ricci, Carlo's father, was born in 1816 and died on 11 November 1893: BS a. XVII, n. 12 December 1893, p. 245.
Mr. Clara Louvet,
I have to leave before you, but I will never fail to pray for your
Blessed eternity. 590
Continue to support our orphans, and our orphans will crown you when the angels will bring you one day to enjoy the glory of paradise.
p. Mary, protect your daughter forever.
Please pray for the eternal rest of my poor soul always obligated servant 595
Turin Abbot J. Bosco
Caro c.te Eugenio De Maistre,
I thank you for the charity with which you have helped our works. Continue your protection.
p. 126 May God make you, your whole family one day all with you, and with your poor friend, who writes you his last words, to enjoy the glory of heaven. So be it.
Please also pray for the rest of my soul
affectionate friend and servant
Turin sac. Gio. Bosco 605
PS O Mary, guide your son Eugene by the way of heaven.
p. 127 Ms C.ssa Carlotta Callori,
O Mary, protect this your daughter, obtain from the divine son Jesus a large reward of charity made in support of the Salesian congregation. Mary will take you to paradise with all your family. 610
Continue to be the support of our works, pray for my poor soul.
To see each other again in eternal life.
obbl.mo in G.C.
Turin sac. Gio. Bosco 615
p. 128 M.me Broquier - Marseille
May God greatly reward your charity and the kindness of your husband; continue to help our works; pray for my poor soul.
I will pray also for you, and I await you in the blessed eternity,
I hope it is the infinite mercy of God. So is it 620
Turin Abbot J. Bosco
588 Mademoiselle Clara Louvet: see line 144.
597 Count Eugenio de Maistre: see line 119.
607 Countess Carlotta Callori: see line 122.
616 Madame Broquier: see line 136.
C.Ssa Gabriella Corsi p. 71
God bless you, O our good mother in GC and with you bless all your family and help you to lead her constantly on the path to heaven and find her one day all with you gathered in heaven.
May this be the reward of the charity used to me and to all your Salesians. Pray for me that I await you for eternal life.
we act as a child
630 Torino Sac. Gio. Bosco
Requiescat in pace. He flew to eternal life 1887.
The director of a house with his confreres Fr. 73
The director must be a model of patience, of charity with his brothers who depend on him and therefore [:]
635 1 ° Assist them, help them, instruct them on how to fulfill their duties, but never with harsh or offensive words.
2nd Show that he has great confidence in them; treat with affection the affairs that concern them. Never make reproaches, nor give severe warnings in the presence of others. But make sure that you always do this in camera caritatis, that is gently, strictly in private.
3 ° If the reasons for such notices or reproaches were public, it will also be necessary to publicly notify, but both in the church and in special conferences never make personal allusions.
623 Countess Gabriella Corsi: see line 123.
632-645 «Charity and courtesy are the characteristic features of a Director both towards the interior and towards the exterior. [...] When commanding, always use ways and words of charity and meekness. The threats, the anger, much less the violence, are always far from your words and your actions "- Confidential memories, RSS 3 (1984), pp. 156-159. «Charity, patience, sweetness, never humiliating reproaches, never punishments, doing good to those who can, harm to no one. This applies to the Salesians among themselves, among the students, and others, external or internal "- Lett. To Msgr. Giovanni Cagliero, E IV 328. - «The preventive system belongs to us; never penal penalties, never humiliating words, not severe reproaches in the presence of others. But in the classes you can hear the word sweetness, charity and patience [...]. The sweetness in speaking, in the to work, in advising gains everything and everybody "- Letter to Fr. to the congregation (...). Be always the friend, the father, of our Brothers, help them in all you can in spiritual and temporal things "- Lett. To Fr Domenico Tomatis, E IV 337.
638-640 "There are those who wish to punish, etc., etc. The director warns, but never in public, never in the face of young people. It is very easy for you to get them to bend to the will of the Supreme] and to the preventive system "- ASC Minutes of the Third General Chapter ... 1883.
The notices, the reproaches, the allusions made patently p. 75 offend and I do not get the amendment. 645
4 ° Never forget the monthly statement as much as possible; and on that occasion each director becomes the friend, the brother, the father of his employees. Give everyone time and freedom to make their reflections, express their needs and their intentions.
He then for his part opens his heart to all without ever letting anyone know any grudge; not even remember the past faults if
p. 76 not to give paternal warnings, or charitably recall who was negligent to the duty.
5. Make sure that you never treat things related to confession unless the confrere asks for it. In such cases, 655 never take resolutions to be translated into an external forum without being well understood with the partner in question.
6th Mostly the director is the ordinary confessor of the confreres.
646-653 "It is strongly recommended to the Directors that they never neglect to receive similar reports. Every confrere then knows that, if he does them well, with all frankness and humility, he will find a great relief for his heart, and a powerful help to progress in virtue "- Rules or Constitutions ... S. Benigno Canavese 1885. Introduction, p. 39. "Everyone has great confidence in his superior; therefore, it will be of great benefit to the members to render an account of the external life to the superior superiors of the Congregation. Each one manifests with simplicity and promptness the external deficiencies against the rules, and also its profit in the virtues, so that it may receive advice and comfort, and, if it does, also the convenient admonitions "- Constitution SDB, pp. 96-97. - «But now the Superiors are considered as Superiors and no longer as fathers, brothers and friends, so they are feared and unloved. Therefore if we want to make a single heart and a single soul for Jesus' sake we must break that fatal barrier of distrust and submerge in it cordial confidence "- Letter from Rome 1884, RSS 3 (1984), pp. 54-55. - "Go not as a Superior, but as a friend, brother and father" - Letter to Fr Perrot, E III 360. - "We regard our Superiors as brothers, indeed as loving fathers, who desire nothing else but the glory of God , the salvation of souls, our good and the good progress of our Society "- Circular of November 21, 1886, in Circular Letters of Don Bosco and of Fr Rua. Turin, tip. Salesian 1896, p. 41. 654-657 "Keep this in mind: if we want the Salesian institution should be kept as it was conceived. One must know that almost everything depends on the monthly statement made and made to do so in the right way (...). The only obstacle would be to enter into things purely of conscience: we do not enter because what is of conscience must be at all secret and we do not have to know it unless they themselves spontaneously want to talk about it "- ASC Minutes of the 2nd Chapter General ... 1880, Barberis notebook.
658-662 "In our Houses the Director is the Ordinary Confessor, therefore he shows that he willingly listens to each in Confession, but gives them ample freedom to confess to others if they wish" - Confidential reminders, RSS 3 (1984), p. 156. - "For the good progress of the Congregation, in order to preserve the unity of spirit and follow the example of other religious Institutes, a stable confessor is established for those who belong to the Society. The Rector Major is an ordinary confessor in any house of the Congregation he finds himself. In each house the ordinary confessor is the Director, but in particular cases each is free to confess himself to another priest as well "- Deliberations of the General Chapter ... 1877, OE XXIX 402.
But with prudence he tries to give ample freedom to those who need p. 77 660 to confess to another. It remains however understood that these particular confessors must be known and approved by the superior according to our rules.
7th Since then those who go in search of exceptional confessors show little confidence with the director, so it, the director, must open the
665 eyes and to bring particular attention to the observance of the other rules and not to entrust to that I brother certain duties that seem to be: 79 they pulled over the moral or physical forces of him.
NB What I say here is quite foreign to the extraordinary confessors that the superior, director and inspector, will take care to fix at 670 appropriate time.
8th In general, then, the director of a house often and with great familiarity treats with the confreres, insisting on the need for unity. 80 forms observance of the constitutions, and as far as is possible also remember the textual words of the same.
675 9th In cases of illness, observe how much the rules prescribe, and how much they determine the capitular resolutions.
10 ° Let it be easy to forget the sorrows and the personal offenses and with benevolence and with regard to studies you study to win or better to correct the negligent, the def [f] ides and the suspicious ones. Wins in bono malum.
680 To the brothers living in the same house
1 ° All Salesian confreres who live in the same house must form one heart and one soul with their director.
679 Rome. 12.21.
681-682 At. 4.32. "All the members live together only by the bond of fraternal charity and simple vows, which unites them in such a way that they form a single heart and a single soul to love and serve God" - Constitution SDB, pp. 82-83. - «Don Bosco recommended the conferences that according to the established in the previous general chapter are to be done to the members every fifteen days. These conferences are like a second section of union so that confreres and directors can be one body and one soul "- ASC Minutes of the 2nd General Chapter ... 1880, Barberis notebook.
2 ° However, they strongly believe that the worst plague by Fr. Escaping is the murmuring. All possible sacrifices are made, but not criticisms of superiors can ever be tolerated.
3 ° Do not blame the orders given in the family, nor disapprove of the things heard in the sermons, in the conferences or written or printed in the books of some confrere.
p. 82 4 ° Every man [f] raises for the greater glory of God and in penitence 690 of his sins, but for the good of his soul he escapes the criticisms in the things of administration, in the dress, in the food and habitation, etc.
5. Remember, my children, that the union between the director and the subjects, and the agreement between them, forms a true earthly paradise in our homes. 695
p. 83 6th I do not recommend particular penances or mortifications to you, you will make yourself great credit and you will form the glory of the congregation, if you will be able to bear each other's sufferings and the sorrows of life with Christian resignation.
684-692 "Let no one ever blame the dispositions of the Superiors, to criticize their actions, their words, their writings and the like" - Deliberations of the General Chapter ... 1877, OE XXIX 417. - "The thing that much harm in religious communities is the murmuring directly contrary to charity. The whisperer will smear his soul and will be hated by God and by men [...] Therefore, make sure you avoid every word that speaks of murmuring, especially towards your companions and even more towards your superiors "- Rules or Constitutions. .. S. Benigno Canavese 1885. Introduction, p. 31. - "Never make murmurs against the dispositions of the Superiors, but the things that are not of our taste are tolerated, or they are penible or sorry. Every Salesian makes friends with everyone, never try to take revenge; be easy to forgive, but don't recall things once forgiven. The orders of the Superiors are never to be blamed, and each one studies to give and promote the good example "- Lett. To Don Giacomo Costamagna, AND IV 332-333. - "Let us look at ourselves then, my dear children, from falling into the grave defect of the murmuring that is so contrary to charity, hateful to God and harmful to the Community. Let us escape the murmuring concerning any person, let us escape especially from our confreres, especially Superiors "- Circular of November 21, 1886, in Circular Letters of Don Bosco and Fr Rua. Turin, tip. Salesian 1896, p. 42. 693-695 "When in a community this brotherly love reigns, and all the members love each other, and each one enjoys the good of the other, as if it were a proper good, then that house becomes a Paradise "- Rules or Constitutions ... S. Benigno Canavese 1885. Introduction, pp. 30-31.
696-699 "Avoid food austerities. Your mortifications are in the diligence to 'your duties and in bearing the harassment of others "- Confidential reminders, RSS 3 (1984), p. 150. See Gal. 6.2.
700 7th Give good advice whenever an occasion arises, especially when it comes to consoling an afflicted person or helping him overcome some difficulty, or doing some service. 84 either in time that one enjoys health, or that one is in cases of illness.
705 8th Coming to the news that in the house it is imputed thing or blameworthy, especially they were things that could even only be interpreted against the holy law of God, if they respectfully give communication I to the superior. It will be able to use due prudence on p. 85 to promote good and prevent evil.
710 9th Regarding the students, each one should keep to the house regulations and the deliberations taken to preserve the discipline and the morality between the students and the artisans.
10th Each one instead of making observations on I what p. 86 do others, work with all possible solicitude to fulfill the duties that were entrusted to him.
Fundamental memory that is obligation for all those p. 87 who work in the congregation
To all it is strictly commanded and recommended in the face [to] God and in the face of men to take care of morality between Salesians and 720 among those who in any way and under whatever title there were from the divine providence entrusted.
705-709 "The assistants should make themselves a very strict duty of conscience to report to the superiors all those things which they know in any way to be offended by God" - Letter from Rome 1884, RSS 3 (1984), p. 57.
713-715 "No one neglects his part. The Salesians considered together form a single body, namely the Congregation. If all the members of this body carry out their service, everything will proceed in an orderly and satisfying manner; otherwise disorders, dislocations, breaks, wrecking and finally the ruin of the body itself will occur. Everyone therefore fulfills the office entrusted to him "- Rules or Cost ... 1875. Introduction, OE XXVIII 44. Cf. Mt. 7.3-5. 718-721 "He who has no founded hope of being able, with divine help, to preserve this virtue in words, in works, in thoughts, does not make himself ascribe to this Congregation, because at every step he would be exposed to great dangers" - Const. SDB, pp. 108-109. See also the entire circular letter to the Salesians of 5 February 1874, E Il
In times of spiritual exercises the director of the house and all other superior ordinaries are advised to stop listening to the confessions of their employees, and as far as possible they may use - 725 confessors and extraordinary preachers. If they are not enough, other well-known confessors are called to help. If in some cases there were some exceptions in this case the superior would know how to judge him. THE
p. 89 When a brother goes into collision with the ecclesiastical authorities of a city, place or diocese his superior uses due prudence and the 730 destinies another use.
Similarly, if some confreres encounter rivalry or opposition with his brothers, it is good that he is changed from a family or occupation.
But let him always be amicably warned of his faults and give rules 735 with which to better regulate in the future to avoid disagreements.
With the outside, you have to tolerate a lot, and even bear the damage rather than come to questions.
With civil or ecclesiastical authorities we can say how much we can 740
honestly, but don't come to issues before the lay courts.
Since then, despite the sacrifices and every good will, we must sometimes argue and quarrel so I recommend and recommend that one p. 91 remits the jurisdiction to one or two arbitrators with full powers, remitting the dispute to any of their opinions. 745
In this way the conscience is saved and business ends, which ordinarily are very long and wasteful and in which peace of the heart and Christian charity are hardly maintained.
p. 92 For the good of every member and of our entire congregation no one mixes for money, for employment or for recommendations that have a relationship with relatives and friends.
In presenting himself with grave reasons why he should occupy himself in such affairs, talk to his superior and keep himself strictly to his opinion.
347-349, and lines 84-85, 352-355, 361-364, of this same document.
740-748 "In the case of questions concerning material things, please comply in all you can, even with some damage, as long as you keep away from any quarrel or quarrels that could cause you to lose charity" - Confidential reminders, RSS 3 (1984), p. 156. Cf. Mt. 5.25; I Cor. 6,1-8.
749-751 «No one in the Congregation makes contracts, receives money, makes loans or loans to relatives, friends or others. Neither does anyone keep money or the administration of temporal things without being directly authorized by the Superior. The observance of this article will keep the most fatal plague away from religious congregations "- Confidential reminders, RSS 3 (1984), p. 158.
755 The maxim of never signing is unalterably observed - p. 93 bills of exchange, nor ever become a guarantor for the payments of others. The experience made known that we always have damage and sorrows.
If you can do some service, give yourself some subsidies, but within the recommended limits allowed by the respective superior.
760 Rue Boetie - Paris p. 95
M.me the V.sse de Cessac.
You have protected our orphans and the Virgin Mary will make you rich in eternity. There you will see your parents, your friends; there you will speak of God with them forever.
765 Continue your charity for us homes; pray for my poor soul
Turin. In Paris abbot J. Bosco
[PS] 1886. Rest in peace
You, Lady Baronessa Scoppa, who lives in S. Andrea del Ionio Napolitano, p. 96 770 continue your charity to our missionaries [,] to our orphans and Mary will guide your works, and you will be much consoled in the last moments of your life. Whether you live on this earth or God has already received you among the blessed in heaven, we will pray every day for you, for your relatives and friends.
775 For the daughters or nuns of Mary Help of Christians the Salesians must faithfully observe what was established in the Chapter deliberations.
We must not pay attention either to work or to expenses or to disturbances of any kind in order to regulate our relations as the Church and the same 780 constitutions have established.
In dealing with material affairs, religious men and women are never alone, but they always try to be assisted, or at least from Fr. 98 other views. Numquam solus cum sola loquatur.
761 Madame la Vicecontesse de Cessac: see line 143.
769 The Baroness Maria Enrichetta Scoppa of Badolato was born in S. Andrea sull'Ionio on 4 November 1831. BS described her as "true apostle" for Calabria, as founder and supporter of various male and female institutes. He died in the twenty-second anniversary of Don Bosco's death, January 31, 1910: BS 34 (1910) n. 4, April, p. 126.
775-777 See the entire chapter "General Direction of the Sisters", in Deliberations of the Second General Chapter ... 1880, OE XXXIII 34-35.
In receiving in the Institute of Mary, be careful not to receive those who do not have good health and well-founded hope of true obedience. 785
It is believed that the virtues not acquired in the time of the novitiate are mostly not acquired any more.
No nun after religious profession retain stable funds either for herself or for the religious community to which she belongs. An exception will be made in p. 99 possessions necessary to establish educational houses or gardens to conserve health.
Neither for mockery, nor for hysteria, nor for other reasons or pretexts, say words that serve m [o] to laugh at laughter or procure esteem or benevolence in people of another sex. Let these words be read and understood and explained repeatedly. 795
p. 100 The general superior, the directors of the houses, does not allow any familiarity with secular persons of any kind. Since there is a real need, an assistant intervenes and the requirements of the respective rules are observed.
The same superior does not consider any sum of - 800 p. 101 money if not for specific business and only for the time I need for things to be dealt with.
What the general superior says is to be said of all the directors of the other houses.
In this and similar things each one remits without opposition to the SOS advice and to the orders of the major superior.
We never make constructions or repairs without being well understood with it.
p. 102 1 ° In dealing with matters of some significance in the Superior Chapter or in the General Chapter, both Salesians and Sisters should make efforts to pre-empt or post the things they want to deal with.
2. Everyone is allowed a wide freedom to speak on the arguments for and against as to each one seems better before God, but secret deliberations are used in deliberations. I 815
p. 103 3 ° Put in a small pocket or container of any kind, walnuts or nuts [c] ioli or beans, etc. of different color and each lead a fruit. Black is negative, white is affirmative.
4. But once a majority has been established in some deliberation, it is no longer necessary except with another resolution in which the whole Chapter takes part.
786-787 "What he did not do in the year of testing, he will hardly do it later and, even when he did, would be a momentary effort, above which one cannot calculate ..." - MB XIII 250.
5) Great care should be taken to punctually execute deliberate things; I and all are attentive to the fact that the deliberations are not p. 104 are never in contradiction, one to the other.
825 It is a great error and wasted effort when the things proposed in Chapter and ap [p] rovate, and then put into oblivion are not executed.
Get everyone to avoid the novelties of the proposals in the conferences or in the Chapters; and let it be done so that the things already previously approved by tradition, by the re-glands, or general or particular Chapters are regularly admitted.
If in a country or in some city there is a difficulty on the part of some spiritual or temporal authority, try to do so [to] be able to present you in order to justify how much you have worked.
The personal explanation of your good intentions diminishes greatly and often makes the sinister ideas disappear in the minds of some Fr. 108 can be formed.
If things are guilty even in the face of the laws, if you ask for 840 excuse, or at least give respectful explanation, but if possible, always in personal hearing.
This way of doing things is very conciliatory and often makes the adversaries themselves benevolent.
Cio e altro che not much raccomanda lddio: 1 soft response p. 109 845 shatters anger. Oppure la massima di S. Paolo, our love is kind, patient, etc.
The same rule follows the house directors with their inferiors. Talk to each other, explain yourself, and you will easily understand each other without breaking the Christian charity against the interests of our own 850 congregation.
If you want to get a lot from our students, never show yourself p. 110 offenses against anyone. Tolerate their defects, correct them, but forget them. Show yourself always fond of them, and let them know that all your efforts are directed at doing good to their souls.
844-846 Pv. 15.1; 1 Cor. 13.4.
Love poverty if you want to keep the finances of the congregation in good condition.
Make sure that no one has to say: this furniture does not give a sign of poverty, this table, this habit, this room is not poor. Whoever offers reasonable reasons to make such speeches, he causes a disaster to our congregation, which must always boast of the vow of poverty.
p.112 Woe to us if those from whom we give charity will be able to say that we keep life more comfortable than their life. 865
This is always meant to be rigorously practiced when we are in the normal state of health, because in all cases of illness all the considerations that our rules allow must be used.
Remember that it will always be a good day for you when 870 you can win an enemy with benefits or make a friend.
857-865 "Let us remember, my dear children, that the well-being of our Pious Society and the advantage of our soul largely depend on this observance. Divine Providence, it is true, has helped us so far and we also say it in an extraordinary way in all our needs. We are certain that this help will continue in the future through the intercession of Mary. Help of Christians, who has always been our mother. But this does not change the fact that we must use all our diligence to diminish expenses, wherever we can, as in saving in provisions, in travel, in construction and in general in everything that is not necessary "- Circular dated 21 November 1886, in Circular Letters by D. Bosco and D. Rua. Turin, tip. Salesian 1896, pp. 42-43. - "Let the world know that you are poor in clothes, food, living quarters, and you will be rich in the face of God and you will become masters of the hearts of men" - Memories to missionaries, RSS 3 (1984), p. 207.
866-868 "Economics is done in everything, but absolutely so that the sick are not lacking. Let everyone else notice that we have taken a vow of poverty, so we must not seek, not even wish for comfort in anything. We must love poverty and the companions of poverty. So avoid any expense that is not absolutely necessary in clothes, books, furniture, travel, etc. »Confidential memories, RSS 3 (1984), p. 159.
869-876 "In speaking and in treating used sweetness not only with the Superiors, but with all, and especially with those who have offended you in the past, or who are looking at you badly at present. Charity endures everything; so that those who do not want to tolerate the faults of others will never have true charity [...]. When then it happened that the brother who has offended you came to seek forgiveness, be careful not to receive it with brusque wax or to reply with dead words: but show him indeed beautiful manners, affection and benevolence. If it happened at the meeting that you had offended others, immediately try to placate it and remove every grudge from you from your heart. And, according to the advice of St. Paul: do not let the sun go down without you having forgiven any resentment, and you are reconciled with your brother "- Rules or Constitutions. .. S. Benigno Canavese 1885. Introduction, p. 33.
Never set the sun above your anger, nor ever. 113 the forgiven offenses called to memory, never remember the damage, the forgotten wrong. We always say heartily: Dimitte nobis debita nostra sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris. But with an absolute and definitive 875 forgetfulness of all that in the past has caused us some outrage.
We all love with brotherly love.
These things are exemplarily observed by those who - p. 114 exercise authority over others.
O dear young people, you who have always been the delight of my heart; I commend to you the frequent communion in suffrage of my soul.
With frequent communion you will make yourself dear to God and to the poor, and Mary will grant you the grace to receive the holy sacraments at the end of life. p. 115
You priests, who are Salesian sisters, you relatives and friends of my soul, pray, receive Jesus in the Sacrament in suffrage of my soul so that I may shorten the time of purgatory.
890 Thus expressed the thoughts of a father to his beloved children now Fr. 267 I turn to myself to invoke the Lord's mercy upon me in the last hours of my life.
I intend to live and die in the holy Catholic religion which has as its head the Roman pontiff, vicar of Jesus Christ above the earth.
871 Eph. 4.26.
873-874 Mt. 6.12. See Col. 3,12-13.
877 See 1 Gv. 4.21.
878-879 Cf. Gv. 13,14.
881 "My dear ones, I love you with all my heart, and it is enough that you are young, because I love you very much" - The Young Provvedito (1885), OE XXXV 135. - "You are really my delight and my consolation .. . "- Letter to the students of Turin, Em I 508. 884-886" My only desire is; that of seeing you happy in time and eternity "- Letter from Rome 1884, RSS 3 (1984), p. 337.
893-897 "... I protest that I want to live and die in this Church which alone preserves the religion of Jesus Christ, the only true, only saint out of whom ninth can be saved" - Testament of the sac. Bosco Giovanni. Turin, 26 July 1856, ASC 132 Testament (MB X 1332).
I believe and profess all the truths of faith that God has revealed to the holy Church.
By giving to God humbly forgiveness of all my sins p. 268 especially of every scandal I have given to my neighbor in all my actions, in all the words uttered at the wrong time; then, in a particular way, excuses me of the excessive concerns used around myself with the specious pretext of preserving health.
I must apologize, however, if someone observed that I made too short a preparation or too short a thanks to S [an] ta p. 269 Mass. In a way I was forced to do so by the crowd of people who surrounded me in the sacristy and took away from me the possibility of praying both before and after Holy Mass.
I know that you, beloved children, love me, and this love, this affection is not limited to crying after my death; but pray for the eternal rest of my soul. 910
I recommend making prayers, works of charity, mortifications, holy communion and these to repair the negligence committed in doing good and preventing evil.
p. 270 Your prayers should be with a special end to heaven, so that I may find mercy and forgiveness at the first moment I will present myself to the tremendous majesty of my creator.
Our congregation has before it a happy future prepared by the divine provence, and its glory will be lasting so long as our rules are observed. 920
When comfort or convenience begins between us, our pious society has completed its course.
p. 272 The world will always receive us with pleasure until such a time that our concerns will be directed to the savages, the poorest children, 925 most dangerous of society. This is for us the true comfort that no one will envy and no one will rapture us.
Don't go to found houses if you don't have the necessary staff p. 273 for the management of the same.
Not many neighboring houses. If one is distant from the other the dangers are 930 much less.
Having started a mission abroad, continue with energy and sacrifice. The effort should always be to make and establish schools and raise some vocation for the ecclesiastical state, or some nun among the girls.
935 In time our missions will be brought to China and - p. 274 precisely in Beijing. But let us not forget that we go to poor and abandoned children. There between unknown and ignorant peoples of the true God we will see the marvels so far not believed, but I who God - p. 275 powerful will make it clear to the world.
940 Stable properties should not be kept outside the homes we need.
When in some religious enterprise the financial means fail us, they suspend, but the works begun as soon as our economies are continued, the sacrifices will allow it.
945 When it happens that a Salesian succumbs and ceases to live working for souls, then you will say that our congregation has brought a great triumph and the p.276 blessings of heaven will descend abundantly above it.
918-920 "The observance of the Rule is the only means, so that a Congregation can last" - MB XII 81. - "If the Salesians [...] do not expect to improve their constitutions, they will study them regularly, the Their Congregation will be more and more flourishing "- Rules or Constitutions ... 1875. Introduction, OE XXVIII 43. -" From the exact observance of your Deliberations, which are like its practical application, depends to a large extent the development of your pious Institute and the spiritual profit of its members "- Deliberations of the second General Chapter of the FMA ... 1880. Presentation of Don Bosco, OE XXXVI 151-152.
921-926 See lines 857-865.
932-934 "Let everyone be inculturated and be constantly advised to promote the religious vocations of both the Sisters and the confreres" - Letter to Don Giacomo Costamagna, E IV 333.
945-948 "We work very, therefore, in all ways, from all sides, endeavor to preserve what is good in the peoples and in the youngsters [...] In the mischievous world we cannot oppose neither paternostri and nemanco miracles: there they want works: many young people must be gathered »- ASC Minutes of the 2nd General Chapter ... 1880, Barberis notebook.
Founder of a religious congregation that included missionary activity among its purposes, Don Bosco did not have the opportunity to go to the so-called "mission lands". Perhaps for this reason too he nurtured a very special affection towards the Salesian missionaries of Latin America who in the last years of his life went to realize that dream that he had long caressed. In his heart and in his mind he felt them as creators of his deepest aspirations, he perceived them as a part of himself, he projected himself into them. The immense admiration and the particular tenderness of which his letters overflow to overseas missionaries would thus find a suasiva explanation.
Thousands of miles away Don Bosco continued to be their "father" and, as such, he wanted to know the moral state of each and every one: he answered their questions, he directed their doubts, he worried about their health, he invited them to practicing the "Salesian" virtues (charity, temperance, industriousness ...), he followed them safe and constant word as if they had a special place in his heart. "" Friend of the soul "gave himself thought to their loyalty to the vocation with intimate recommendations and exciting advice: he praised his work, he appreciated the sacrifices, he made them feel the object of his care and his prayers.
But Don Bosco also felt himself to be the Superior of a congregation and while leaving room for personal initiatives he did not fail to intervene to observe the constitutions and the Chapter deliberations and above all because religious and missionary life was a credible witness in the eyes of civil and religious authorities. of the place as well as of the high Vatican spheres. He wished to be constantly informed of the activities in progress, the progress of the works, apostolic successes and failed operations, so that he could be jointly responsible from Turin through a courageous confrontation with the local reality known thanks to an uninterrupted correspondence.
In the last years of his life Don Bosco was aware that what the congregation needed most of all, both in Italy where he was already present
has long felt, both in Latin America where he was transplanting, it was not only the unity and stability of the structures. The guarantee of the future, and of a Salesian future, was in the hands of the confreres and collaborators as long as they remained faithful to the spirit of the origins, that is to say the method and educational style that had characterized the life of the Oratory of Valdocco.
If with the «letter from Rome» of 1884 he had responded to a particular educational situation that had come to be created under his own eyes in Turin, the following year a similar and unequivocal circumstance was at the base of the editorial, in the short turn 10 days, with three more letters to missionaries from America, which can be listed among the most important of his correspondence for the purpose of understanding and deepening the educational system and the Salesian spirit.
From Argentina, some members of the Superior Chapter had received alarming rumors indicating that in some houses of America, and especially in the house of Almagro (Buenos Aires), severity and rigid discipline tended to displace familiarity and loving kindness so much dear to Don Bosco and essential to his system. And as if this were not enough, the existence of deep lacerations among the confreres of the aforementioned house was insinuated.
The one who sent the serious report was Don Antonio Riccardi, 2 secretary of Monsignor Giovanni Cagliero. As Visitator of the American Houses and waiting to take possession of his mission as Apostolic Vicar of Patagonia, Monsignor Cagliero spent some months in the house of Almagro and with him his secretary, whom he had therefore been able to observe and then report to Turin what was happening there before his eyes.
A little over a month after his arrival in America he had already written to Don Rua that Almagro's house "was poor in spirit and money." 3 But it was only a warning. The authentic "bomb" would have broken out in the Superior Chapter only a few weeks later with its explosive communications to Don Lazzero, Fr Durando, Fr Barberis and Fr Rua. In particular, writing confidently to Fr Rua on 6 June Fr Riccardi thus stigmatized the situation: «[... 1 in this college of Almagro the Director does not exist but by name, never being in contact with young people either for confessions or for advice nor for any other need, except for no more than 10 minutes in the morning, after meditation.
1 Cfr. RSS 3 (1984) 295-374.
2 Born in Porto Maurizio (Imperia) in 1853, at the age of 10 he entered the Valdocco Oratory, where 6 years later he received the cassock and in 1875 he was ordained a priest. Having left for Latin America in 1885 as secretary of the newly appointed Apostolic Vicar of Patagonia, Mons. Cagliero, later worked as a missionary in Peru, Jamaica and Mexico, where he also held the post of Provincial for a time. He spent the last years of his life in Italy, where he died on 15 May 1924. See BS 48 (1924) n. 8, August, p. 223, which served as a source for the Salesian Biographical Dictionary, edited by E. VALENTINI-A. RODINÒ, Turin, Salesian Press Office 1969, p. 237.
3 Letter from Fr Riccardi to Fr Rua dated 9 May 1885; ASC 9.126 Rua.
He spends almost the whole day with the sisters, for the schools and for other ». And after presenting the super work to which Fr. Vespignani, Fr. Cassini and Fr. Paseri were subjected, he continued: "Therefore the young remain very neglected, and it is no wonder that they do not attend Holy Communion and are very unruly. The assistants without support, and unfortunately with the eyes, under the eyes, the dry and sometimes rude character of the Director, inexperienced, to get a little order and discipline know no other method than to beat so that every day, at every hour, you hear nothing but shout the ouch in every corner of the house [...] Monsignor spoke first privately, he already gave three lectures to all the confreres gathered inculcating the practice of the preventive system [...] but everything up to now is without effect. They say that if Don Bosco was here, would do like them !!! And the Director supports them, telling Monsignor that with little ones you can't do otherwise ". Nor did Don Riccardi conclude his letter at this point. For various other pages he recounted regrettable circumstances of which he had witnessed, before addressing an attentive appeal to Fr Rua: "It would be most assured, however, that VS [...] generally invited all the Salesians of America: 1 ° To consider themselves as brothers, children of one Father Don Bosco [...] 2 ° To practice and not only read the preventive method [...] 3 ° To not depart from the customs of the Oratory in terms of practices of piety and frequency of the Holy Sacraments . 4 ° To consider that the name is not enough to be a Salesian, if the gentleness, patience and charity of St. Francis de Sales is not practiced.
Incredulous of the news they received, the various recipients of the letters replied to Riccardi who had perhaps exaggerated in his "denunciation" that his letters had been written "by passion" and that someone had misinterpreted his correspondence with various persons of the Chapter.
4 Photo copy in ASC 9.126 Rua. The roles held by the aforementioned members of the Superior Chapter were as follows: don Michele Rua, prefect; don Giuseppe Lazzero, councilor, director of the Mother house (artisans section); don Celestino Durando, school counselor; don Giulio Barberis, deputy spiritual director. Mgr. Cagliero. We are not surprised by the frequency of Riccardi's correspondence with the Superiors of Turin and particularly with Don Lazzero. In addition to knowing them all personally for having lived next to them for many years, leaving Italy had been told that Don Lazzero was in charge of the American correspondence. On the other hand, in their replies everyone expressed their appreciation for his letters and invited him to continue his correspondence.
He replied to them Riccardi in the following months. He denied exaggerating in the account of the facts and in the tone of his saying, he justified his writing to various members of the Superior Chapter, and by reiterating the information given he bore the names of witnesses who would be able to add further details to prove his previous afflictions relations.' Riccardi was certainly not immune to the disparaging and regretful spirit of the "small ancient world" of the early Valdocco period; ° but his j'accuse was substantially true and the same deputy director of the house of Almagro, don Giuseppe Vespignani, albeit with gritted teeth, will have to admit it. '
5 On 19 August to Don Lazzero: "In a few words, in my opinion, I would define things like this: I. Absolute concentration of all authority in the Director, so that if he is absent, the house remains headless ... II. Exercise of supreme authority in the Director with harsh, provocative and humiliating and degrading ways ... III. Lack of a continuous free correspondence of the Confreres with Don Bosco, and with the Superiors of his Chapter ... And we cannot give blind faith to all the relationships that were sent in Turin in the past years. ... Cloths that in the reports of the past years talk too much about the beauty and the good that should be in the mother house of Almagro and never hint at the evil and ugliness that is actually found there ... they were poetic leaps and in my antecedents I believe I have sufficiently demonstrated the bitter disillusion mine and Monsignor's. Upon our arrival the complaints, the long repressed grudges in the hearts of many confreres were revealed and sometimes even publicly and in the presence of us, with certain scenes happening, which is nice to be silent ... ». To Don Lazzero again on September 3: "... I have other negative, but eloquent arguments in my hands. Before leaving, Monsignor was recommended to be given frequent information about the houses, the confreres, the nuns, etc. Those of Colón, those of Paysandu do it ... but from Almagro they come only letters of d. Costamagna, reading which Monsignor cannot let escape certain expressions ... but then he laughs saying that - He is a man of the ancient creed, that there -! ": ASC 275 Riccardi. And to Don Durando the following 27 October: "I believe, dear Mr. d. Durando, that I never wrote anything out of passion, nor under the impression of it, indeed very little was what I wrote in comparison with that very much more than I could and perhaps ought to have written. Suffice it to say that there was (before our arrival) those who did not hesitate to publicly pronounce that in terms of educating young people, Don Bosco and those who are with him in Turin, do not mean a fig tree ... But it is enough »: ASC 275 Riccardi.
6 In his letters we often meet explicit references to "ancient Turin, at least 20 years ago, when the Oratory was the house, not the college, and Don Bosco the father not the Rector or Director of his children": aforementioned letter of 19 August.
7 Se ne vedano alcune testimonianze in C. BRUNO, The Salesians and the daughters of Marta Auxiliadora in Argentina. Vol. 1. Buenos Aires, Salesian Institute of Graphic Arts 1981, pp. 152-154; JE BELZA, Luis Lasagna, the missionary bishop. Buenos Aires, Editorial Don Bosco 1970, p. 195, n. 7. Evidently non potevano mancare alcune pagine sull'intera vicenda in RA ENTRAIGAS, The Salesians in Argentina. Buenos Aires, Editorial Plus ultra. Vol. IV (years 1884-1885) 1972. Vedi pp. 261-265.
In any case, Don Riccardi's letters did not pass in vain through the corridors of the Mother House in Turin. Don Rua gave them immediate credit and already at the end of June he wrote to Msgr. Cagliero: "In your moral account you also favor if these directors, in their way of dealing and working, retain the spirit of St. Francis de Sales, that is, the charity, sweetness and long-suffering that our beloved Father Don Bosco always recommends and which it produces good effects in all both internal and external. We have understood that the Salesian colleges and houses are not all run with the gentleness and with the preventive system, but in some sites it is rather the use of the repressive system. You will be able to examine things better in the place and make the necessary remedy, where needed ".8
Monsignor Cagliero then intervened directly both with the Inspector-Director Fr. Costamagna strongly recommending him "to follow throughout the preventive system" and with the Salesian personnel with "conferences on sweetness, charity, affability". 10 Subsequent to the received instructions he gave an account to Fr Rua, who in turn passed it on to Don Bosco who lived in Mathi's house in those days. "
In this way Don Bosco, who from the Riccardi 12 and from the same members of the Superior Council had perhaps been kept in the dark until then, for reasons of prudence and respect, of the real situation of the houses of America became aware of it and simultaneously intervened at Mons. Cagliero (6 August), Don Costamagna (10 August), Fr. Tomatis (14 August).
8 ASC 9.131 Rua: letter dated 30 June 1885. While the first part is by the hand of a secretary of Fr Rua, the second part (We intended ...) is an autograph addition of the same general prefect of the congregation.
9 Letter cited 3 September 1885.
11 On 10 August this was what don Rua wrote to Msgr. Cagliero: «I sent the letter to our dear Don Bosco to Mathi. We will hear what he thinks of it ": ASC 9.131 Rua. Note the coincidences: on 10 August Fr Rua had already sent the letter of Msgr. Cagliero to Don Bosco. On 6 August Don Bosco wrote his reply to the bishop also announcing that he was preparing a letter for Don Costamagna. The date 10 August. Four days later it will be the turn of that to Don Tomatis.
12 He himself will confess to Don Bosco in his letter of 2 January 1886: "You certainly have every reason to be against me in disgust because I never or almost never wrote to you about my departure from Turin and the arrival in America. I did so not to increase the occupations ... ": ASC 126.2 Riccardi. Indeed the ASC preserves various letters sent by Don Riccardi to Don Bosco during 1885. But perhaps Don Bosco also expected confidential letters from Riccardi, and not only those as secretary of Msgr. Cagliero.
This is the context and the immediate circumstances of the three letters which, as they did not go unnoticed among the individual recipients, "did not escape the attention - especially the second - of the scholars of the educational system of Don Bosco and his spiritual and religious pedagogy. 14
The ASC keeps all three autographs: the first and the third at position 131.01 Original letters, mc. respectively 11 B 10 - C 1 and 53 B 1-3; the second, recently received, is still in a definitive placement stage.
13 See eg the outcome of the letter to Fr Costamagna in C. BRUNO, Los salesianos ..., p. 155 and RA ENTRAIGAS, Los Salesianos ... IV, pp. 264-265.
14 SG Bosco, Writings on the Preventive System in Youth Education, by P. Braido. Brescia, La Scuola 1965, pp. 346-348 for the letter to Msgr. Cagliero, and pp. 348-350 for that to Don Costamagna; G. Bosco, Spiritual writings. Vol. 2, edited by J. Aubry. Rome, Città Nuova Editrice 1976, pp. 258-265 (to Mons. Cagliero), pp. 260-262 (to Don Costamagna). pp. 264-265 (to Don Tomatis). Needless to say, they are reproduced in MB XVII 626631 in E IV 327-329, 332-333, 336-337 and in many other volumes of Salesian history.
My dear Monsig. Cagliero
Your letter has given me great pleasure, and although my vision has become very weak, I wanted to read it myself from beginning to end, despite that calligraphy which you say you learned from me, but which degenerated from the primitive form. The things of administration 5 will answer others for me. On my side I'll tell you the following.
In writing to the Propag [action] of the Faith, keep the Work of the Holy Child calculating everything that the Salesians have done in different times. I believe you have the modules you need to use in exposing our things to these Presidents, who also willingly receive the Italian writings if they had difficulties in the French language. If one is not enough, write even more letters about the trips of D.Fagnano, D. Milanesio, D. Beauvoir etc.
1 Born in 1838 and welcomed by Don Bosco in 1851, Giovanni Cagliero was ordained a priest in 1862 and consecrated bishop on 7 December 1884. Head of the first Salesian missionary expedition in 1875, he was then recalled by Don Bosco to Turin, where he remained until to the new departure for Latin America as Vicar Apostolic of PAtagonia, departure which took place in early February 1885. Only in the following July he left Buenos Aires for his apostolic mission on the banks of the Rio Negro. Cardinal in 1915, he died in Rome on 28 February 1926. Cfr. Profiles of Salesian missionaries and daughters of Mary Help of Christians, edited by E. VALENTINI. Rome, LAS 1975, pp. 1-8.
2 Your letter: this is the letter of June 29, 1885 (ASC 126.2 Cagliero; mc. 1466 D 10 - 1466 E 6) and not that of July 30, 1885, as MB (XVII 626) incorrectly asserted. Both are then addressed to Don Bosco and not to Fr Rua.
6 others: namely the members of the Superior Chapter, and in particular the prefect general Fr Rua.
7-18 Don Bosco for his part did the same. A few days before, and exactly 27 July, having received the sum of 1,000 francs from the Central Council of the Opera of the Holy Childhood to be donated to the Patagonia missions, he immediately thanked the secretary and took the opportunity to underline further apostolic developments. in those lands: unpublished letter in French, with the handwritten signature of Don Bosco, Archive of the Opera della S. Infanzia at the Propaganda Fide Archive - Rome.
12-13 D. Fagnano, d. Milanesio, d. Beauvoir: see the short biographical portrait in Profiles of missionaries ... pp. 12, 42, 64.
Note particularly [the number of] the baptized, confirmed, instructed, hospitalized in the past or present 15. Consider that in the Propaganda exhibition everything is said, but in general. For the Propagation of the Faith, travel, commerce and discoveries; for the Holy Childhood, what is relative to the children, to the maidens, to the Sisters or to the Salesians is minutely said.
If by chance you are missing models to trace these reports, 20 tell me and we will send you. There is a great propensity to come to our aid. It is good, however, that from here I know at least on the whole, what you write from there, because I can be questioned at every moment.
With regard to the Bishops Coad [iutori] I need to have some positive requests and at this moment I hope to succeed in something. 25 The practice for a Purple to the Archbishop was very well initiated by Cardinal Nina; but now for our misfortune it has passed to eternity. I have already touched another singer, and I will give you a nod in due course.
I prepare a letter for Fr. Costamagna, and by your law I will be particularly interested in the Salesian Spirit that we want to introduce in the houses of America.
Charity, patience, sweetness, never humiliating reproaches, never punishments, doing good to those who can, harm to no one. This applies to the Salesians among themselves, among the students, and others, external or internal. For the relationships with our Sisters, use a lot of patience, but rigor in observing their rules. 35
20-22 See lines 7-18.
23-27 In his letter of June 29, Msgr. Cagliero reported that the archbishop of Buenos Aires, Msgr. Leone Federico Aneiros had written directly to the pontiff to ask that his two vicars general, Antonio Espinosa and Juan Agustín Boneo, be named his auxiliary bishops. But having once again failed in his intent - the negotiations had been underway for several years with the Roman authorities - he asked for Don Bosco's mediation. Curiously, it will instead be the turn of Don Bosco's "son", to Msgr. Cagliero, to overcome the last Roman resistances and thus favor their promotion in the years 1892-1893.
The bishop of Montevideo, Msgr. Innocenzo Maria Yeregui had put forward in Rome the candidacy of his vicar general as auxiliary bishop and hoped for an intervention by Don Bosco. Note the great trust that Msgr. Cagliero (and with him the two South American bishops) in Don Bosco's authority in the high Vatican hierarchies. He certainly could not forget Don Bosco's numerous mediations for the appointment of Italian bishops whom he had witnessed many times.
25-27 The archbishop mentioned is Msgr. Aneiros (see above) for whose promotion Cardinal Don Bosco had already taken steps at the Prefect of the Sacred Congregation of the Council, card. Lorenzo Nina. Having passed away a few days earlier, Don Bosco communicated to Msgr. Cagliero, who had just heard the news of the cardinal's death, immediately contacted other members of the curia.
In general then in our straits we will make every sacrifice to help you; but advises everyone to avoid the construction or purchase of buildings that are not strictly necessary for our use. Never things to resell; not fields or land, or dwellings to make money from it. 40
Try to help us in this regard. Do what you can to have vocations for both Sisters and Salesians, but do not engage in too many jobs. Anyone who wants too much tightens and spoils everything.
Having the opportunity to speak with the Archbishop, with Monsig. Espinosa or other similar characters, you will say that they are entirely for their service especially with regard to things of Rome.
You will tell my niece Rosina that she has a lot about health, that she is careful not to go alone to Heaven. Go there, yes, but accompanied by many souls saved by you.
God bless all our Salesian children, our Sisters and Daughters of Mary Help of Christians. Give everyone health, holiness and perseverance on the path to Heaven.
Morning and evening we will pray for you all at the altar of Mary; and you also pray for this poor half-blind that you will always be in GC
Affectionate friend 55
Sac. Gio. Bosco
Turin 6 August] 885
PS. - An innumerable multitude demand to be named to you and pay their respects.
47 Rosina: born in Castelnuovo d'Asti on 23 July 1868, she was actually a great-grandson of Don Bosco as the daughter of Francesco Bosco, the saint's nephew. Postulant and then novice in the home of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians in Nizza Monferrato, with the missionary expedition of 1885 he left for America. As soon as she arrived there, she fell ill, so that Msgr. Cagliero in his letter to Don Bosco on June 29 wrote: "Sister Rosina is always cheerful, although not completely cured". He died in Viedma on 21 January 1892, at the age of 23.
Dear and always loved D. Costamagna
The epoch of our spiritual exercises is approaching, and I who see myself at an aging age would like to be able to have all my children and our sisters in America with me. Since this is not possible, I have decided to write to you a letter that can normally be used by you, by other confreres of ours to become true Salesians in your exercises which are not much done by our distant ones.
First of all we must bless and thank the Lord that with his wisdom and power he has helped us to overcome many and serious difficulties that we alone were really incapable of. Te Deum, Ave Maria.
I would then like to preach to everyone myself or rather a lecture on the Salesian spirit that must animate and guide our actions and our every speech. The preventive system is just 15 us. Never criminal penalties; never humiliating words, not severe reproaches in the presence of others. But in the classes the word sweetness, charity and patience are heard. Never biting words, never a serious or light slap. We use negative punishments, and always so that those who are warned, become our friends more than before, and 20 never depart dejected by us.
We never make murmurs against the provisions of superiors, but things that are not to our taste, or are penitent or sorry are tolerated. Every Salesian makes friends with everyone, never seek revenge; be easy to forgive, but don't recall the 25 things once forgiven.
1 Don Giacomo Costamagna was born in Caramagna di Piemonte on March 23, 1846. He entered the Valdocco Oratory at the age of 12 and was ordained a priest in 1868. In 1877 he left with the third missionary expedition to Latin America where he was appointed director in 1880 of the house of Almagro and inspector of the houses of Argentina. While still living, Don Bosco founded the first Salesian house in Chile and visited various countries in South America in view of possible foundations. Elected titular bishop of Cologne and Apostolic Vicar of Méndez and Gualaquiza (Ecuador) in 1895, only in 1912 will he obtain the permission of the local government to settle definitively in his mission. Author of liturgical, ascetic and musical works, he was spiritual director of various religious communities, especially of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, at whose service he worked both in Italy and in America. He died in Bernal (Argentina) on 9 September 1921. Cfr. Profiles of missionaries ... pp. 38-42.
Superiors' orders are never blamed, and everyone studies giving and promoting good examples. We inculcate ourselves to everyone and constantly recommend ourselves to promote religious vocations both of the sisters and of the confreres.
The sweetness in speaking, in working, in warning, earns everyone and everyone.
This would be your and others' tracks that will be part of the next preaching of the exercises.
Give everyone a lot of freedom and confidence. Anyone wishing to write to his superior, or to receive any letter from him, is not absolutely read by anyone, except the one who receives it, such as he wishes. In the most difficult points I strongly recommend the inspectors and the directors to make appropriate conferences. Indeed I recommend that Fr Vespignani be very clear about these things and explain them to his novices or candidates with due prudence. 40
As much as I can I wish to leave the congregation without embarrassment. Therefore I have in mind to establish one of my Vicar General who is an alter ego for Europe, and another for America. But in this regard you will receive timely instructions.
It is very opportune that you sometimes gather the heads of your Province to suggest the practical rules indicated above. Read and inculcate reading and knowledge of our rules, especially the leader who talks about the practices of piety, the introduction I made to our own rules and the deliberations taken in our general or general chapters. 50
You see that my words would demand a lot of explanation, but you are certainly able to understand and where it is necessary to communicate to our brothers.
As soon as you can present to M. Arciv., Mr. [E] spinosa, to his
39 Don Giuseppe Vespignani: born in Lugo di Romagna in 1854, he became a Salesian after his priestly ordination in 1876. In 1877 he was sent, with the third missionary expedition, as novice master in the house of Almagro. In 1880 he was also deputy director of the same house, and later succeeded Don Costa-magna, then appointed bishop, as director and inspector. In 1922 the XII General Chapter elected him professional and agricultural councilor, a position he held for 10 years. He died on January 15, 1932 and his body was transferred to Buenos Aires in 1948. See Profiles of Missionaries ... pp. 48-53.
41-43 The Vicar General will be Don Michele Rua, and Mgr. Cagliero, whose appointment will be announced a few weeks later. See MB XVII 620.
54-55 For Msgr. Archbishop, Msgr. Espinosa and the Vicar General of Buenos Aires see notes to the previous letter. Edoardo Carranza was the general president of the conferences of St. Vincent in Buenos Aires. Dr. Terrero, or, better, don Juan Nepomuceno Terrero (and not Ferrero, as it was probably written probably after Don Berto's bad transcription) had studied theology in Rome and had been in contact with Don Bosco for some time. He will then become bishop of La Plata.
55 Vic. Generali, D. Carranza, Dott. Terrero and other friends and you will make everyone and everyone humble and affectionate respects as if I were speaking to one person.
God bless you, dear Dar Costamagna, and bless you and keep all our brothers and sisters in good health, and Mary Help of Christians guide you all on the path to heaven. Amen.
Pray for me all.
Your affectionate friend in GC
Sac. Gio. Bosco
Torino 10 ag. 85
64 Turin: more precisely, Mathi should have written, a town a few kilometers from Turin, where Don Bosco had moved from mid-July to avoid the sultry heat of the city.
My dear D. Tomatis,
Receiving so few of your letters makes me judge that you have much to do; I believe it; but to give your news to your dear Fr Bosco certainly deserves to be one of the things not to be overlooked. What to write? you will tell me. Write about your health and the health of our 5 confreres; if the rules of the congregation are faithfully observed; if you do and how to do a good death exercise. Number of students and hopes that give you success. Do you do something to cultivate vocations, do you have any hope? Is Mons. Ceccarelli always a friend of the Salesians? I await these answers with great pleasure.
Since my life is taking a big step towards its end, so the things I want to write to you in this letter are those that I would recommend to you in the last days of exile: my will for you.
Dear D. Tomatis: keep in mind that you became Salesian 15 to save yourself; preach and recommend to all our confreres the same truth. Remember that it is not enough to know things but to practice them. God help us that the words of the Savior are not for us: Dicunt enim et non faciunt.
Try to see your business with your eyes. When someone 20 fails, or careless, promptly warn him without waiting for evils to be multiplied.
With your exemplary way of living, with charity in speaking, in commanding, in bearing the faults of others, many will be gained to the congregation. 25
He constantly recommends the frequency of the sacraments of confession and communion.
The virtues that will make you happy in time and in eternity are: humility and charity.
Always be the friend, the father, of our confreres; help them in everything 30 what you can in spiritual and temporal things; but know how to use them in all that can benefit the greater glory of God.
1 Don Domenico Tomatis was born in Trinità (Cuneo) in 1849. He entered Valdocco at a very young age, received priestly ordination in 1875. Don Bosco included him among the departing members of the first missionary expedition, when he had been in Va-Razze for a few months. fifth gymnasium professor. For several years he was director of the college of S. NicoMs de los Arroyos in Argentina and of Santiago in Chile.
9-10 Mons. Pietro Bartolomeo Ceccarelli: parish priest of S. NicoMs de los Arroyos, one of the main supporters of the Salesian journey to Argentina.
Every thought I express in this paper needs to be somewhat explained. You can do this for yourself and for others.
35 God bless you, or always my dear Fr. Tomatis; makes a very cordial greeting to all our confreres, friends and benefactors. Say that every morning in the holy Mass I pray for them, and I humbly commend myself to everyone's prayers.
God grant that we can still see ourselves in this dead exile -40, but that we can then one day praise the holy name of Jesus and Mary in the blessed eternity. Amen.
In a short time I'll write to you or I'll write other things of some importance.
Mary keep us all still and guide us on the path to heaven. Amen.
45 Your affection in GC
Sac. Gio. Bosco
Mathi 14 August 1885 +
33-34 Every thought ... the others: see previous letter, lines 32-33.
+ Fr. Dominic Tomatis replied November 5, 1885 with a wide letter, in which he neatly found all the questions posed by Don Bosco: health, the Rules, the exercise of a good death, vocations, Msgr. Ceccarelli. He finished by thanking with singular affection and great concreteness of commitment: "I do not know how to thank her enough for the very precious memories that you give me in your letter, and leave me as your testament. I really don't like hearing anything about a testament, but I think she wanted to do the opposite of what many do, waiting to say their last will, when they can't talk anymore. Your Fatherhood wanted to take things from afar, and leave us long before those memories that you wish were practiced by us later. Meanwhile,
I wrote his memories in a sheet, which I added to the book of our Rules, to have them more often under the eyes; and so the Lord help me not to forget them with works, as I will have present them in thought.
Every evening, after having thanked the Lord for having created me, made a Christian and a priest, I bless Him for having made me a Salesian, and I pray to the Holy Trinity, for my beloved Father Don Bosco, for the dearest confreres and for the growth of our Society " (D. TOMATIS, Epistolario (1874-1903). Critical Edition edited by J. Borrego, Rome, LAS 1992, pp. 188-191).