Focus 2008

Topinos - ICP15-09-2008

Project: Turin Chaplaincy to Filipino's (10th anniversary 2008)
Date: From 06-09-1998
Place: Turin, Italy
Province: ICP

The Chaplaincy

Situated at the heart of the city and located within the grounds of San Giovanni Evangelista Church (run by the Salesians) and next to the Oratory of San Luigi (2nd oratory founded by Don Bosco), the Filipino Chaplaincy has been the home of hospitality to all the Filipinos in Turin since its foundation on the 6th of September 1998 when the celebration of the first Holy Mass in Filipino was heard.

The Filipinos themselves have shared in its realization but worthy of mention is the unrivalled effort of Fr Giovanni Benna SDB, who has put all of himself at the service of the Filipinos in Turin.

Organizational aspects

The chaplaincy has a Pastoral Council, led by the chaplain and the leaders of the different groups as members. The Pastoral Council regularly plans and spearheads each activity year-round. Practically it caters to all the various needs of every Filipino who comes. At a practical level, it facilitates the finding of jobs especially for those who have just arrived and helps them to cope with the language through the Italian course it offers. More importantly however, is the pastoral care and spiritual nourishment that it provides to the Filipinos young and old alike.

The chaplain administers and makes the sacraments available for those who need them. In his absence, the Salesian community lends a helping hand. On a daily basis, Masses and novenas are celebrated and are frequented by those who are able. On Sundays, the Holy Mass is celebrated in Filipino and an average of 450 persons attends the celebration. Occasionally, baptisms and weddings are celebrated.

Since it is only on Sundays that everyone is more or less free from work and other responsibilities, feast days both religious and cultural are also celebrated on this day. Saturdays offer an organized sharing of the Word of God for the adults and young catechists. On Sundays, an hour before the Holy Mass, catechism is given to the youngsters who are classified according to their age-group. Recollections and seminars are offered on special occasions for the different church groups and organizations. Finally, a weekly family ministry is done by bringing the image of the Blessed Virgin Mary to different homes and by praying the Holy Rosary together with the family.

The youth

There exist two distinct groups amongst the Filipino youth. One group is composed of those who were born in Italy and the other is composed of those who were brought to Italy by their parents. Youth belonging to the first group have an advantage in terms of living up to the culture and to the way of life that the society demands whereas the latter must adjust to the new environment: language, lifestyle and the pervading culture. Parents are often absent for work-related and other reasons.

The absence of the parents leads to negative repercussions in the life of their children because it also means the absence of guidance and formation. Part of the task of the chaplaincy is to do what it can to substitute for this lack.

Address: Cappellania dei Filippini
Tel: (0039) 011.659.06.09
Fax: (0039) 011.659.06.22