Focus 2008

La Corsa dei Santi - RMG15-11-2008

Project: Saints Marathon
Date: November 1st, 2008
Place: St Peter's Square
Province: RMG, Don Bosco in the World Foundation

First 'Saints Marathon'

On 1st November, in Rome, we saw the first  "Saints Marathon",  organised by Prime Time Promotions and supported by the Don Bosco in the World Foundation of the Salesian Congregation.  The event saw more than two thousand people take part, including athletes and others. The most meaningful aspect of this non-competitive race was the involvement of the Roman Mayor, Gianni Alemanno,  who actually finished the race to show that his presence was more than a symbolic one.
Many who took part, including the Mayor himself along with the Salesian Rector Major, Fr Pascual Chávez, and other authorities, then stayed on in St Peter's Square for the Holy Father's Blessing.  He made reference to the Saints' Marathon,  indicating an analogy between the foot race, with its sacrifices and triumphs, and the 'race' to holiness that every Christian is called upon to undertake.

For Street kids in Congo

While we recall that the “Saints Marathon” was aimed at supporting the Mamma Margaret Work for street children in Lubumbashi in Congo,  we are happy to tell you that there will be a second such event next year, of the "Saints Marathon" and we hope that it will be even more attrative and involve even more people.
The "Mamma Margaret Work" is a group of Salesian communities taking in "street kids" in Lubumbashi in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where this sad phenomenon became so apparent a dozen or so years ago and has been on the increase.
The constant increase in numbers of street kids in Lubumbashi and the uncoordinated efforts of so many individuals in responding, led the Salesian Family to combine forces in an effort to remedy the situation.
More than ten years experience at it has allowed the Mamma Margaret Work to tackle the problem of street children today far more concretely. The real purpose of the Work is to rebuild families.
The Mamma Margaret Work aims not only to offer children chance to learn a trade but also to guide them towards self-direction. A young person has to be able to carry out his or her own choices in in an independent fashion.

Holy Father's Message to those who took part.

“I greet our pilgrims, especially the thousands from all across Italy who took part in the first Saints Marathon promoted by the Salesian Congregation, and who are here together with the Mayor of Rome, Gianni Alemanno. Dear friends, you started off from and returned here to St Peter's, running via St John Lateran's, St Paul Outside the Walls and St Mary Major's. I am very happy about this new initiative, which expresses the joy and also the effort in running for holiness as well. May our entire life be a race for faith and love, encouraged by the great witnesses to the Gospel! Happy All Saints Day to you all!”

Address: Don Bosco nel Mondo
Via della Pisana 1111,
00163 Roma
Tel: (+39) 06.656.12.663
Fax: (+39) 06.656.12.679
Web site: donbosconelmondo