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Winter/Spring 2012



Helping Cambodian Flood Victims – See page 18



Leave a Legacy of Love and Hope…

Cards For India . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

And Help Make the World a Better Place.

Notes From the Field: A Conversation With Salesian Lay Missioner, Monica Ellebracht . . . . . . . .10 Salesians in the U.S. and Canada: Diverse Salesian Parishes Bond in Birmingham, Alabama . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 Cambodia: Precious Young Lives Lost In Floods . . . . . . 18 Salesian Snapshots . . . . . . . . . .21 A College Degree for Just One Dollar A Day . . . . . . . . 26

Want to know who we are, where we began, and who inspires our work? Visit us at our website: We’ll send you to over 130 countries where the Salesians are working for the young, the poor and the abandoned. Once you know us, the Salesians offer you a path for partnership in so many ways.

Hope to see you soon!


ne person, like you, can make a significant difference. Your decision to remember Salesian Missions in your Will can bring positive change to the future of thousands of needy children struggling each day just to survive. Our programs around the world are saving these precious lives… and helping to make the world a better place. By including Salesian Missions in your planned giving, your heart and soul are forever part of these good works. So consider leaving a legacy of love and hope that will live on in generations to come.

Please remember Salesian Missions in your Will… 2 LEFEVRE LANE, PO BOX 728 NEW ROCHELLE NY 10802-0728 TEL: (914) 633-8344

SALESIAN • Published Bi-Annually • Since 1950 • Salesian Missions, 2 Lefevre Lane, New Rochelle NY 10801-5710 Issue 265 • Winter/Spring 2012, Volume 64, No. 1 (Issn. 0036-3480)

Letter from the Editor Dear Friend and Partner in Mission! As we begin 2012, I pray for the health and well-being of you and your loved ones. Thanks to caring friends like you, we have been able to continue assisting missionaries around the globe, who so many poor children depend upon. I am aware that times are difficult financially for many people right now, which makes your sacrifices for these children that much more meaningful. Even more needy youngsters will now receive daily, nutritious meals, an education and vital job skills and a safe, clean place to sleep – because you cared! In this current issue you will travel around the globe – to India, Bolivia, Cambodia and back home to the U.S.A. in Birmingham, Alabama. You will read about a special group of students here in Chicago who reached out to our mission kids in India. It’s a wonderful story about the values and spirit of our young people. I had the added pleasure of visiting several of our missions in India recently, seeing first-hand your love and compassion in action. Every time I see the smiles on the faces of children who only know poverty and despair, I realize how comforting it is for them to know that someone cares for them and prays for them. I am grateful for the difference you have made in the lives of countless children, and realize that our life-saving work can’t be accomplished without your help. The stories in this magazine are a testament of your generosity and goodness. I look forward to working with you in the New Year as our continued partnership gives new hope to children and their families here in the U.S.A. and abroad. Please be assured of our prayers for you. God bless you for caring. With sincere gratitude,

Father Mark Hyde, S.D.B.




& receive!


The Salesians showed us how we could have income for life… and help the poor, too!

“They told us how the Salesian Annuity Plan could help poor children the world over. By investing a minimum of $5,000, we would receive a check from them on a regular basis for the rest of our lives! Not only that, but both our initial gift and the interest checks are tax deductible in part! “This gift is more than a lifetime investment – it brings us financial security and the satisfaction that our annuity will help the needy around the world for many lifetimes – long after we’ve been called to God. “Yes, the Salesians pay us a guaranteed rate of income, based on our age. We feel financially secure thanks to the Salesians.” – Salesian Annuity recipient Win/Spr 2012

❏ Yes! Show me how I can help the children and myself!

Send me more information about the returns and tax deductions I would receive under the Salesian Missions Annuity Plan. I understand that all personal information you receive about me will be kept absolutely confidential. (Minimum amount for a gift annuity is $5,000 and the minimum age requirement is 55 deferred to age 60, or age 60 for immediate annuity) AMOUNT OF GIFT CONSIDERED $ ___________ FOR SINGLE ANNUITY


(Not available in the state of Washington)





Name __________________________________________ Date of birth ____________________________ Sex_____ Address _____________________________ Apt. #______



MONTH_______ DAY________YEAR ________


City ____________________________________________


State _________________________ Zip ______________


Cards For India

Mr. Jan Wiezorek and his fourth grade class gather outside their school in Chicago. Soon the children’s handmade cards would travel across the globe…

A story featured in our last issue of Salesian Magazine has inspired children from a world away – at St. Matthias School in Chicago – to come up with a way to help. While Mr. Jan Wiezorek and his fourth grade class read the Summer/Fall 2011 edition, they were heartbroken to learn about the plight of displaced children in the Assam region in India. It was hard for them to imagine what it must be like for



children their own age to live in makeshift camps and schools. Upon reading how the Salesians were caring for the children through their CARE Project (Children At Risk Education), the

The Indian children cared for and educated by the Salesians, were thrilled to receive greetings from their American friends!


Winter/Spring 2012

St. Matthias students banned together and sold lemonade to their schoolmates at lunchtime. They were thrilled to raise $65 to help the children in India. Mr. Wiezorek’s students then made greeting cards with their own personal messages for their faraway friends. Fr. Mark, Director of Salesian Missions in New York, was impressed by the children’s compassion and initiative in their fundraising effort. He brought their handmade cards with him on a recent

Father Mark Hyde, (below) Director of Salesian Missions, during his recent visit to India.

trip to visit missionaries in India and personally handed the cards to a group of young students. The photos show just how thrilled the children were with this meaningful act of kindness – and they demonstrate the power that even a small gesture can have in the lives of children who are struggling to overcome poverty, hunger and other overwhelming challenges.

We thank Mr. Wiezorek and his fourth graders at St. Matthias School for teaching such a valuable lesson in giving to those less fortunate. Y



Prayer For the New Year O, God, our heavenly Father, as we enter upon this new year, we commit ourselves to Thy faithful care and keeping. Grant that no chance or change may turn us aside from doing Thy holy will. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Prayer Request Form We will remember your prayer requests at Holy Mass offered in our chapel at Salesian Missions in New Rochelle, NY.

❏ For world peace. ❏ For the health and well-being of the world’s children. ❏ For the healing of an illness. ❏ For an end to terrorism. ❏ For the poor and homeless. ❏ For the sanctity of life. ❏ For a personal problem. ❏ For spiritual growth. ❏ For the victims of civil strife and natural disasters. ❏ For a peaceful death and eternal life with the Lord. ❏ Other: ______________________ _______________________________ WIN/SPR 2012

Please fill in below and return to:

SAleSIAN MISSIONS 2 LEFEVRE LANE • PO BOX 728 NEW ROCHELLE NY 10802-0728 Please print carefully

Name_______________________________________ Address______________________________Apt.____ City ________________________________________ State__________________ Zip __________________ 8

Winter/Spring 2012

What was once mud and straw... Millions of people throughout Africa, Central and South America, India and Asia are celebrating Mass and worshiping God in the most primitive conditions. Salesian missionaries are in desperate need of funds to build simple and decent houses of worship. You can have a Memorial Chapel built in honor of your favorite saint and dedicate it to anyone you wish – living or deceased. What a wonderful way to remember a loved one – and help the Lord’s most impoverished followers.

Is now this! Thanks to generous people like you!


CHAPEL IS A UNIQUE DESIGN THAT REFLECTS THE NEEDS OF THE LOCAL COMMUNITY IT SERVES. You can make an individual gift to build a Memorial Chapel, or groups or organizations can pool their donations. If you wish, you can also specify in your will that a chapel be erected in your honor or for anyone you choose.

WIN/SPR 2012 ❏ Enclosed is my gift of $15,000 to build a Village Memorial Chapel. ❏ Enclosed is my gift of $20,000 to build a Memorial Chapel in a remote and difficult area. ❏ Enclosed is my gift of $25,000 to build a Memorial Chapel in the most far removed & neglected area.

PLEASE CHECK ONE: ❏ IN MEMORY OF: ❏ IN HONOR OF: ❏ DEDICATED TO: NAME: ______________________________________________________________

❏ Please send me more information. (You can also E-mail or phone us, if you wish) ENCLOSE CHECK, MONEY ORDER (PAYABLE TO: SALESIAN MISSIONS) OR CREDIT CARD INFORMATION:




CID# REQUIRED (Last 3 digits on


signature panel on back of card) EXP. DATE (MO/YR)

Name _________________________________________________________________________________________ (PleASe PRINT CleARlY)

Address ______________________________________________________________________________Apt._____ City___________________________________________________________ State _________ Zip ______________

2 LEFEVRE LANE, PO BOX 728 • NEW ROCHELLE NY 10802-0728 TELEPHONE: (914) 633-8344 • Email: SALESIAN


Notes From the Field: A Conversation With Salesian Lay Missioner, Monica Ellebracht “Monica, tell us about the organization and the work you do.” “The Salesian Lay Missioners is a Catholic volunteer organization based in New Rochelle, NY. In the spirit of Saint John Bosco, who devoted his life to helping children and the poor, volunteers like me from the United States are sent to different Salesian Mission sites around the world – to orphanages, rural communities, shelters, and churches to help improve the lives of impoverished youth through education and moral development. The application process includes a five week orientation, normally in July-August, with everyone serving that year. We Monica’s love for children and her fondness of Hispanic culture drew her to Bolivia. meet others, learn more

10 Winter/Spring 2012

about where we will be sent and prepare for this wonderful adventure. My assignment was Hogar Maria Auxiliadora in Bolivia.”

“Why did you choose to go to Bolivia to volunteer?” “Service has always been important to me and I was blessed with a previous service trip through my church. I fell in love with the Hispanic culture, language, and children we worked with there. From this, I knew I needed to do something long term. I looked into a few different programs and found the Salesians to fit perfectly. I felt drawn to orphanage work.”

those conversations I have had with neighbors, shop owners, etc., have been fruitful. They also want to make sure we are enjoying their culture and beautiful country.”

“Would you recommend the Salesian Lay Missioners to others and why?” “Definitely! If you love children and want to spend a year (or more) of your life having a unique experience, I’d say go for it. We serve all ages, all over the world, in all sorts of ways. I enjoyed looking to see all the possibilities and seeing where God was calling me.”

“What impact does this relationship have on society? You? The kids?”

“How long have you been with the Lay Missioners?”

“Bolivians are not used to the idea of working for free, since many must live from dollar to dollar to provide for themselves, and often their children. It can be hard for them to understand why we are here, and I definitely get questioned a lot. However,

“Why did you sign up to go back another year?”

“About a year now.”

“Not only do I love the culture and want to keep working on my Spanish, but there is a greater reason. I realized whether we play and laugh together or the girls SALESIAN 11

Monica assembles a group of eager students for morning classes at Hogar Auxiliadora.

whine and fuss, I love them just the same. I wanted to continue showing them that they deserve love in their lives. Pure, unconditional love is what living life for others is all about.”

“What changes have you seen in yourself and the country?” “Although we cannot change the academic system, we can make changes through education with the children. Many lack motivation, so we try to make learning fun and help them advance in their studies (especially reading,

12 Winter/Spring 2012

math, and English). I have learned a lot of parenting skills (especially being more patient!) and how to think through my decisions a little differently, since they can affect the girls in my care. It is a very different experience living and working with these girls and having to be there for them all the time, not to mention the language and culture differences, but we have adjusted quite well.”

“What can people do to help?” “Donate. Organize a drive. Volunteer a year or two with us! You can donate through

could also get a drive together, but please ask the Salesians before you collect, to learn what their current needs are.

“Anything else you would like to say?” Helping to make learning fun!

to support this volunteer program, or even give to Salesian Missions in general to support more missionaries and their global work for poor youth. You

“If you are at all interested in helping needy children, ask and find out what’s available. Call, write or check out our website for more information on this program and to read personal testimonies of past volunteers.” Y

The Salesian Lay Missioners is a faith-based volunteer program that offers a unique opportunity to serve the poor children of the world. We sponsor domestic and international placements and require a 1 or 2 year commitment.

If you would like more information about this life-changing program, please write to:

Salesian Lay Missioners Attn: Adam Rudin 2 Lefevre Lane New Rochelle NY 10801-5710 Or visit our website at: or email us at: slm@ SALESIAN 13

Tools for Schools…

$10= $100

Many of our Trade Schools are using old and worn tools or are improvising for tools they don’t even have. These tools are vital in teaching poor youngsters a trade … the skills to find gainful employment. We have currently established relationships with individuals and organizations that are willing to donate literally thousands of slightly used and brand new tools to us … but we must pay the cost of packing, shipping and distribution to our various trade schools around the world. BECAUSE THE TOOLS ARE FREE, WE CAN SUPPLY $100 WORTH OF TOOLS TO OUR SCHOOLS FOR EVERY $10 YOU GIVE! Please help us take advantage of this wonderful opportunity and give our students better and safer tools to use.

❏ Yes!

Tools for Schools

WIN/SPR 2012

I want to help give poor youngsters better and safer tools to use in your Trade Schools. Enclosed is my gift of ❏$10 ❏$15 ❏$25 ❏$ ________ ENCLOSE CHECK, MONEY ORDER (PAYABLE TO: SALESIAN MISSIONS) OR CREDIT CARD INFORMATION:




CID# REQUIRED (Last 3 digits on


signature panel on back of card) EXP. DATE (MO/YR)

Name___________________________________ Address________________________________________Apt. ____ City___________________________________________________________ State _________ Zip ______________

MAIL TO: 14 Winter/Spring 2012 Summer/Fall 2010


Salesians In the U.S. And Canada 1897, the first Salesian missionaries set foot in California. The Ingoing was tough and slow – but the spirit of Don Bosco was with them and work progressed. Today over 335 Salesians are present and working with the young throughout the United States and Canada. 2009 saw the merging of the Salesian Eastern U.S. and Canadian Provinces. The hope of the Salesians in both countries is that this union, based in New Rochelle, New York will provide a more effective means of expanding Salesian works for the young and needy in North America.

Diverse Salesian Parishes Bond in Birmingham, Alabama


t’s the tale of two vastly different Salesian parishes in Birmingham, Alabama. But the bond they share adds enrichment to the lives of those in their respective communities.

Since 1955, Holy Rosary parish has been the oasis in a neighborhood plagued by drugs, crime, violence and poverty. Most of the parishioners are hard-working


people, struggling to provide better lives for their children. The Holy Rosary Youth Center offers a place where their kids can play and have fun in a safe environment, and receive both academic and spiritual guidance. While at the Center, children are in the loving care of Sr. Rita, who dedicates herself fully to the well-being of the young, poor and needy. It’s a labor of love and dedication for which she is greatly admired. In addition to providing support for young people, Holy Rosary distributes food and clothes to the needy three times a week and whenever anyone has an urgent need. It’s a place where neighbors can turn for a helping hand. Whenever Holy Rosary needs a helping hand, however, they know they can rely on their friends at St. Theresa’s parish. St. Theresa’s is blessed with a more affluent and rapidly increasing base of parishioners. The church opened in 2000 and has grown today to more than 450 families. The parish serves as a neighborhood focal point for families wanting to raise their children in a

16 Winter/Spring 2012

caring environment that promotes moral values and compassion for those less fortunate. An active Parish Council meets once a month to stay in-tune with the needs of the community. The Mom’s Group provides an important support network for mothers. And the religious education program teaches children how to lead their lives in a caring, kind and responsible way. These meaningful values are what inspire the families of St. Theresa’s to show their support and generosity to the needy families of Holy Rosary. It’s a cherished bond that provides fulfillment to those who give as well as those who receive. Y

St. Theresa Church in Birmingham, Alabama.

Both parishes bring families together throughout the year with special religious and social functions.

At St. Theresa’s, young people are given the opportunity to live and work side-by-side for a week in a program called “Gospel Roads.” The program combines a retreat and community service where participants help their neighbors – here they are shown doing repairs after a tornado caused extensive damage to the area.

Children gather together for supervised activities organized by the parishes.



Precious Young Lives Lost In Floods

n 2011, as flood waters rose to levels never before Iseen, hundreds of thousands of Cambodian families

found themselves in sudden peril. Without boats, impoverished families living along river banks rushed to cut down banana trees and bamboo in order to build make-shift rafts. Others were forced to swim in frantic attempts to reach safe ground. 18 Winter/Spring 2012

Travel through flooded areas is difficult at best and impossible in certain areas.

Tragically, many of the youngest victims in harms way could not escape because they did not know how to swim. Of the precious lives claimed by the disaster, half were children. In total, 1.6 million people have been affected by the catastrophic flooding, including 800,000 children. Many have been left with nothing – not even food. The devastation is severe and widespread, impacting 18 out of 24 provinces in the country. Wells have been filled with floodwater, rendering them unsafe for drinking.

As flooding recedes, stagnant water combined with poor sanitation breeds diseases to which the children are vulnerable. Some areas have been completely shut off to the outside world, as washed out roadways have made it impossible to reach stranded victims. The loss of homes, farmland and income will likely force children to find work to help provide for their families. These desperate actions not only prevent children from attending school, they put them at much greater risk of exploitation and human trafficking.


Although some houses in floodprone areas are built above ground, recent storms have made travel for food and supplies almost impossible.

Amidst the darkness of the destruction and despair, there is a glimmer of hope. The Don Bosco Children Fund (DBCF) in Cambodia was specifically created to support, educate and feed needy children and offer aid to areas affected by natural disaster. For the past 20 years, thousands of Cambodian children and young adults have

20 Winter/Spring 2012

received medical care and job training through this program, which offers precious support and opportunities to the underprivileged. As families rebuild their homes, farms, schools, communities and lives, the DBCF will play a critical role in their efforts and ultimate recovery. It will take time and investment to reach all those that have been impacted and to resurrect all that has been lost. Numerous schools are submerged and will remain closed for quite a while. In many instances, food and water can only be delivered by boat. With your help, we can overcome these obstacles. We will continue to supply food, water, medical care and aid in the reconstruction. We will repair and rebuild damaged schools so children can resume their education. And we will restore a sense of hope and security that will enable Cambodian families to move forward with their lives. Y

Salesian Snapshots ... a scrapbook of stories from around the Salesian world SierrA Leone: 25 Years Teaching Children The Salesians have just celebrated their 25th anniversary in Sierra Leone, Africa – a presence that has had a remarkable impact in the lives of needy children for an entire generation. The Salesians first arrived Since 1986, the Salesians have been offering hope in 1986 at Lungi, and then to homeless boys and girls in Sierra Leone. opened a center for street children in Freetown eight years an alternative to life on the streets later. Since that time, the program by providing them with a safe place has grown into a major outreach to gather while at the same time effort catering to homeless and educating them to become responabandoned kids. Today, the center sible members of their community. operates “Don Bosco Mobile,� a The official 25th anniversary residential program for reuniting event held in Sierra Leone was a families; a hostel for girls; an emerjoyful event attended by many famgency crisis hotline; a youth center; ilies and Salesians. Special activia parish and an oratory. ties included a radio marathon at The Salesians offer the children Freetown involving 5 stations that


devoted 5 hours each promoting Sales. This is the work which is the work of Don Bosco and raising being undertaken in a professional awareness about the plight and manner by the Salesians and an the rights of children. In addition, immense group of lay co-workers.” there was an open forum for young people, students, teachers and social workers on the subject of the Preventive System and building a new Sierra Leone; and a Press Conference involving 10 newspapers and 10 radio stations including the BBC. The Salesians are reaching out In his address, the Salesian to the Q’eqchí Indians – descenProvincial of West Africa said: “We dants of the Maya – by offering varare grateful to the pioneers who ious retreats that will enable them were the first to spread the Salesian to further cultivate their rich spiricharism in Sierra Leone, and to the tual culture. local people who welcomed the Salesians with open hearts and to the many benefactors who have helped to bring Don Bosco’s dream to life… Much has been done so far, but the road ahead of us is steep. We have to listen to the cries of the children. Our mission is more than offering them shelter, food, clothes and education. Our mission is to work for the salvation of the children and the young, to bring the little ones to Jesus, with the loving Devoted lay people work with the Salesians to kindness of Saint Francis of reach out to the local Q’eqchí Indian population.

GuATemALA – Peoples’ missions Among the Q’eqchí indians

22 Winter/Spring 2012

The Q’eqchí Indians are among the poorest groups in Guatemala. Their parish has about 250,000 inhabitants spread among 350 villages. However, there is a severe shortage of priests – only six of them – to adequately meet the needs of the people. The Salesians in San Pedro Carchá responded by funding a special initiative Hundreds joined in the run to raise funds called the “Peoples’ Missions” to aid thousands affected by drought and to help fill the void. The profamine in the Horn of Africa. gram will rely on the involvement of 70 dedicated lay people ect supported the work of the who will act as coordinators in the Salesians in the Horn of Africa – villages and ensure that the aiming to help the thousands of Q’eqchí Indians can pursue their inhabitants there affected by spirituality in a fulfilling way. drought, famine and political unrest. Salesians serve more than 80,000 people in refugee camps in the Horn of Africa. The “Saints Run” helped raise urgently needed funds to assist with the repair and The 4th Annual “Saints Run” maintenance of existing wells, promoted by the “Don Bosco in the drilling of new wells, water distriWorld” foundation, took place in bution and emergency food aid. Rome this past November, 2011. The event began with a Mass Hundreds of youngsters from at the Altar of the Confession in Salesian facilities around Italy took St. Peter’s Basilica. The Mass was part, together with a large number concelebrated by about a hunof professional athletes. This projdred Italian Salesian priests and

iTALY – “Saints run” To Aid Horn of Africa


attended by almost a thousand youngsters and adults. At the end of the Mass on a lovely mild day, the run began. There were two separate courses, one of 10.5 km for the serious competitors, and one of 3 km for the amateurs. This year over 2,700 runners took part to support the Salesians in their humanitarian efforts.

moroCCo – “Becoming a Trusted Friend”

Eager students welcome the educational opportunities available at the Salesian Training School in Kenitra, Morocco.

In a country that is officially Muslim, the Salesians are gaining the trust of the Moroccan people by creating relationships based on friendship and goodwill. The greatest testament to the well-meaning intentions of the Salesians is our Vocational Training School in Kenitra. It provides valuable opportunities for young people of all religions. “The school already has an excellent reputation,” explains Fr. Isidore Mbokola. “We are known and appreciated for a serious approach to work, for the bilingual

24 Winter/Spring 2012

French-Arabic education and our various projects.” The warm acceptance and impressive success of the Salesians in Morocco is credited to a basic, fundamental approach. Simply stated, the Salesians inspire confidence in the students by reinforcing that they are genuine, honest people – and by providing them with an excellent education. As for the religious differences, Fr. Isidore takes it in stride by saying, “We give them some idea of our religion through good example, kindness and goodness, and strive to foster close relationships with all – Muslim and Christian alike.” Y

Haiti: A Progress Report Thanks to you this devastated country is recovering and the future is bright! The tragic earthquake in Haiti on January 12, 2010 still haunts the hearts and minds of these unfortunate people. There is still much to be done, but thanks to your generosity, the Salesians have been able to make remarkable progress. Here are just a few examples of Salesian projects that are renewing the hopes and lives of the people in Haiti:

Support for the Agricultural School of the Vincent Foundation: This project consists of a three year commitment to educate and feed 140 students. The main objective is to teach self-sustaining farming and livestock raising techniques.

Le Petites Ecoles du Pere Bohnen: The “Little Schools of Father Bohnen” are back in operation and last year provided more than 21,000 children with nutritious meals and a valuable education.

Rebuilding the Salesian University Network: Hundreds of computers destroyed by the earthquake were replaced, the network was reconnected and back-up batteries installed. Now hundreds of students have the tools to further their education.

Warehouse Project: The Salesians have constructed a large warehouse and refrigeration room for long-term food storage for distribution to children and families in the event of any future emergencies.

The Salesians have served in Haiti since 1935 and plan to continue their life-saving work well into the future. May God bless you for helping to heal these broken lives. Please visit our Haiti Newswire for the latest updates at:

Thanks For Your Patience… As some of you know, this year we finally disconnected our 30 year old computer system and installed something newer. We are still learning how to use it, so please bear with us if our letters are delayed or if there are errors in your name or address. Also, the U.S. Postal Service has recently announced that their service levels need to be decreased due to financial restraints. This means they won’t be delivering the mail as fast as they used to. So with the new computer system and the Postal Service problems, we have some difficult days ahead of us. Please contact us if you are seeing mistakes or experiencing delays in the mail you receive from us. God bless you for understanding – please remember us in your prayers. – Fr. Mark

A College Degree For Just One Dollar A Day Don Bosco College, Dharmapuri, India

Don Bosco College – serving young people and still growing! Expansion to serve the ever-growing student population is an on-going project.


uition of just one dollar a day is enabling some of the poorest students in South India to pursue what was once unthinkable – a college education.

Since opening its doors four years ago, the Don Bosco College in Dharmapuri is opening up new opportunities for impoverished young people to break free from poverty. Already, the college has proven to be a godsend for a region plagued by some of the worst human condi-

26 Winter/Spring 2012

Students are encouraged to help out in the school and therefore contribute to their own education. Here a young girl organizes a store room.

tions on earth. More than half of the population is illiterate, drugs and crime are rampant, and many children have been abandoned by their parents and are alone, fending for themselves. In its first year, Don Bosco College consisted of 250 students and 10 staff members. Since that time, it has grown ten-fold and today boasts a student body of 2,460 and a staff of 110. While progress has been significant, the young college is still in the developing stage and in need of funding to support its continued growth and ability to serve more impoverished young people. The return on this investment is enormous, as measured by the personal stories of the impressive young people who are benefiting from this life-changing experience. Here are just three compelling examples:

“I am Kavitha, 17 years old. My mother works for a meager wage of Rs 110 ($2) a day. When I was 14, my father was implicated in a murder and is in jail for life. My mother made many sacrifices to support me for my school education. She planned to send me for some manual work and then get me married. But I cried and cried, begging her to send me for studies. One day I met a nun who took me to Don Bosco College. I was promised a scholarship to pursue my studies. My sponsor is a past pupil of another Don Bosco institution. Now I am able to study well without the worry of trying to pay for my schooling.


When I am employed I am going to help a student to study in Don Bosco College.” “I am Saravanan, 18 years old. One day the physical education director from Don Bosco College came to our school. He saw me play volleyball and invited me to join the college after finishing high school. I told him I Building mind, body and soul. Sports are a vital part had no money to pay of a well-rounded education. the tuition fees and that my parents wanted me to ($300) a month. Don Bosco has work to support my 3 brothers shown me the way to a secure life.” and 2 sisters. But the physical edu“I am Viji. My mother died cation director convinced me to when I was just 9 years old. My visit the college. The principal father is a truck driver but he has promised to give me admission no permanent work. He was planand he would find a sponsor to ning to get me married as soon as pay my fees. I attended the college I completed my school. I met a lady and was captain of the volleyball whose son was a student of Don team and we won many tournaBosco. Knowing my family backments. In the final year of my studground, she asked her son who ies, I attended a selection camp for works in a pharmaceutical comthe police department and I was pany to support my education. overjoyed when hired. Today I am I am at present studying a graduate and earn Rs 15,000

28 Winter/Spring 2012

Students gather for an assembly. (above) A friendly game of volleyball. (right)

Mathematics for my graduation. I am at the top of my class. I hope to do my post graduate studies and work as a college lecturer to help poor students have a good education. The valuable education classes in the college have given me much enthusiasm to support the poor in society.”

But Don Bosco College still needs to grow… Currently in its fifth year, the college is growing to serve even more students. The first graduates

are proud of their university certificate and spread the good word in their villages about their future prospects. Caring people like you have helped make these young people’s dreams come true – and Don Bosco College will continue to enrich more young lives in South India. Y


Count Your Blessings - Grant a Wish! The Salesians work in over 130 countries. Just imagine, then, how many of our missionaries write to tell us of their hopes and dreams, trials and successes. Maybe, as you count your blessings, you could grant a wish. God bless you! Fr. Mark

Wishes of the Month • Assam, India: Continued help is needed to supply food, housing and education for the many children and families still displaced by past years of ethnic violence in this region of India. See pg. 5.

• Our Salesian Lay Missioners program, is in need of funds to support the volunteers during their 1 - 2 year commitment to help improve the lives of poor youth in our global missions. See pg. 10.

• Birmingham, Alabama: Local parishes need your help to continue the many projects and services offered to this diverse community. See pg. 15.

• Cambodia: Recent floods have left 1.6 million people devastated. The clean-up, aid and reconstruction is a long-term commitment by the Salesians. See pg. 18.

• Dharmapuri,

India: The Salesian Don Bosco College, functioning but still under construction, offers a lifeline to students plagued by some of the worst living conditions on earth. See pg. 26.

Grant a Wish Reply Form

WIN/SPR 2012

YES, I want to help make a wish come true for Salesians and the children and families they serve. I am enclosing my donation of:

❏ $7 ❏ $10 ❏ $25 ❏ Other $_________ for the life-saving works featured in this magazine and all the other Salesian programs that benefit the poor and needy. ENCLOSE CHECK, MONEY ORDER (PAYABLE TO: SALESIAN MISSIONS) OR CREDIT CARD INFORMATION:




CID# REQUIRED (Last 3 digits on


signature panel on back of card) EXP. DATE (MO/YR)

Name___________________ Address ______________________________________________________Apt._____ City___________________________________________________________ State _________ Zip ______________

30 Summer/Fall 2011




Mass Vestments as Memorials or Gifts What better way to honor the memory of a deceased loved one, to honor a new priest, or to help a mission chapel. The vestments come in the liturgical colors of white, red, green, and purple. The suggested offering for each vestment is $135 and a matching set of four is $540. For an additional offering of $10 each, the vestments can be embroidered with a name in memory of or in honor of a loved one.


■ $135 for one vestment. ■ $540 for a set of all four vestments. ■ $10 each for embroidery of vestment.

Win/Spr 2012

Please Check One: ■ DONATE THIS ITEM TO SALESIAN MISSIONS ■ I WISH THIS ITEM TO BE SENT TO MY HOME. (Allow 6-8 weeks for delivery)

Special Instructions for EmbrOIdEry on vestment: ■ IN LOVING MEMORY ■ IN HONOR OF

_________________________________ _________________________________ ■



Enclosed is my offering of:


■ Charge my credit card account number: CID # REQUIRED: (LAST 3 DIGITS ON SIGNATURE PANEL ON BACK OF CARD) EXP. DATE (MO/YR)

Signature X __________________________________________ Name ____________________________________ Address _________________________ Apt.#____ City _______________________State___Zip_____ Telephone # (________) _____________________ MAIL TO: 2 LEFEVRE LANE, PO BOX 728 NEW ROCHELLE NY 10802-0728 TEL: 914-633-8344


WE RESPECT YOUR PRIVACY… In our efforts to raise additional funds to support our worldwide work for the poor and needy, we periodically make your name and address available to other mailers. These include similar charitable and humanitarian organizations and also companies which offer services and products that we think you may be interested in. We are extremely selective in choosing the organizations and companies we associate with in this way. If you prefer not to have your name and address made available for this purpose and/or you want to modify any mailing preferences, please call, write or email your request to: Attn: Donor Relations SALESIAN MISSIONS 2 LEFEVRE LANE, PO BOX 728 NEW ROCHELLE NY 10802-0728 TEL: 914-633-8344 Email:



Suggested offering for each throw is











Win/Spr 2012

City ____________________________State ____Zip _______

Visit us on-line at:

Non-Profit Org. U.S. Postage P A I D Salesian Missions


Address __________________________________ Apt.#____

Signature X ________________________________________ Name _____________________________________________ SALESIAN MISSIONS




Please allow 2 weeks for delivery



If you receive duplicate copies, or your name or address is incorrect, please notify us. Thank you.


Designed especially for Salesian Missions, it prominently features our mission logo. This throw measures a generous 50” x 60” and is knitted of extraheavy, machine washable acrylic. Available in nAvy or burgunDy. (Please specify on request form).


Snuggle up in our

Salesian Magazine - Winter/Spring 2012 edition  

Our magazine features in-depth stories of children who are turning their lives around, missionaries who are performing extraordinary work, a...

Salesian Magazine - Winter/Spring 2012 edition  

Our magazine features in-depth stories of children who are turning their lives around, missionaries who are performing extraordinary work, a...