|Project||50 Years of salesian work in Odessa|
For Salesians in Odessa this year is very special. It is the 50th anniversary of Salesian presence. In 1958 Fr Taddeus Hoppe arrived in Odessa on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. For many years, up until 1991 he was the only Roman Catholic priest in that aprt of Ukraine. Working there for 33 years, alone, Fr Taddeus kept the flame of faith alive. Thanks to him not only the parish but also the diocese now exists.
1. St PETER'S PARISH
The story of this church began in 1904, when the first stone was laid. The church, called by Odessa inhabitants the “French church” was built by French sailors, as well as Italians and Spanish and was consecrated in 1913, 22 September. Communism resulted in repression of Christian churches, including the Catholic Church. Preists in particular were persecuted. The Second World War brought Odessa into the hands of the Romanians – German allies. The Romaenians allowed the diocese to start up again and let priests get on with their ministry. In 1942 the Parish Priest of St Peter's was Fr Peter Leoni. He had been imprisoned by the Soviets. Despite all this St Peter's remained the only parish in existence. On 8 December 1958 Fr Taddesu Hoppe arrived in Odessa... a spiritual son of Don Bosco.
2. THE “NARNIA” INFANTS SCHOOL.
The Infants School has been running since 2006. There are 55 children split into 3 groups from 3 - 5 years. There are 5 teachers and 12 other people involved. The chilcren can remain at school throughout the day. There is time for catechetics too.
3. JUVENILE PRISON SERVICE
From January 2007 Salesians and lay helpers have been following some 60 young prisoners. The educational activity is carried out by people who can offer their time for spiritual, scholastic and sporting activities. Last year a new area was set up in the prison for a chapel, to improve this aspect. There is also cooperation with Protestants in the prison ministry, especially for common prayer.
4. “DON BOSCO” SPORTS SOCIETY.
The sports group is for football, for boys born between 1993 and 1996. There are around 40 of them. The team has competed in regional championships and various other competitions. There are also regular meetings with a priest. A good relationship with the parents has also been set up.
5. FORMATION OF PERSONNEL
All personnel belonging to the Youth Centre take part in formation meetings in the educative and Pastoral Community. This year saw the 2nd Seminar on “Educating as Christians” involving Salesian Cooperators.
6. OTHER ACTIVITIES
There are activities for younger children in the Centre. This includes out of school activities for the 7 -14 year olds, from 4-6 pm. They are always active: videoclub, music, ethics discussions, games and tournaments. Summer holidays are happy times, with games, prayer and discussions. In September 2008 the Oratory was improved in terms of space for the kids.
7. SALESIAN YOUTH CENTRE IN ODESSA AND MASS MEDIA
You are invited to look at our web site. Centre activities have been published in Italian, Polish and Ukrainian,. Articles are published too in the “Parish Gazzette”, in the Salesian Bulletin “Don Bosco” and in the Polish Gazette “Kontakt”.
|Tel:||(38) (0482) 37-49-22|