Message Dear Confreres, Every General Chapter is an invitation to the entire congregation to take a serious look at itself, see itself today in the mirror of the Gospel and the charism that its founder bequeathed to it; and determine through serious reflection, study and analysis the current faithfulness, or otherwise, to the Gospel values associated with the particular charism. Each of us had our own personal encounter with Jesus at our baptism, an encounter that was made more intense and focused by our own personal decision to commit our lives to him on the day of our religious profession. But with the passage of time, we have witnessed the waning of the intensity of our initial fervor and enthusiasm in the living of our lives as religious. It is within this context that we are invited by our General Chapter to reflect so as to enable us to rediscover for ourselves the fundamental Gospel values and principles. One of the most powerful of personal encounters that Jesus had with a human being during the course of his earthly ministry is the incident of Jesus and the Samaritan woman (Jn. 4: 1-42). I would like to use the Samaritan Woman as the paradigm for us to reflect on the depth and validity of our own lives as religious today. Taking a holistic view of the incident, what emerges as the ultimate result is a totally transformed person: “come and see the man who told me everything I have ever done” (Jn. 4: 29); a person who traversed the road of discovery regarding the identity of the person who wrought the inner transformation within herself from the near scornful “you are a Jew…” (9), to the “could he be the Messiah?” (29); The culmination of the incident has two aspects: the first is to be found in the following - “Many of the Samaritans in that town believed in Jesus because the woman had said, “He told me everything I have ever done.” (Jn. 4: 39) We have here faith and belief as the result of someone else's experience.
My dear confreres, our own individual lives often move on similar lines. Our personal encounters with the Lord as he awaits us along the road of life can take diverse forms. We draw waters from diverse wells that do not satiate our thirst: water of praise to refresh our failing self worth, water of success to keep alive a sense of importance, water of pleasure to delight our senses. Our seeking for the source of living water that will finally slake our thirst is to be found only in the person of Jesus and in our personal encounter with him, as he awaits us beyond the curve on the busy road of our lives. Our life cannot be abundant and fruitful without HIM as the LIVING WATER. “I am the vine and you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will bear much fruit; for you can do nothing without me.” (Jn.15: 5) Religious Life is a journey to be with the LORD and to abide in HIM. As St Augustine has expressed so succinctly, “our hearts are made for Thee oh Lord, and they are not at rest until they rest in THEE!” God alone is our safety and security. 'In You all find their home'. It is precisely here the importance of our own particular brand of spirituality, the Salesian Spirituality of Don Bosco, comes into play. We are to live and transmit our own individual style of spirituality, that is, our own particular brand of encounter with the Lord. Our Salesian spirituality is the synergic mix of prayer and action, where our work becomes our prayer and vice versa. This can be achieved only through a very personal deep encounter with the Lord in constant prayer/work, as did our founder Don Bosco, who epitomized in himself the paradigm of work and prayer union, “constant union with the Lord,” as defined by Pope Pius XI.
Fr. V M Thomas SDB Provincial
BROTHERS’ CONGRESS The Seventh South Asian Salesian Brothers Meet was held at Don Bosco Institute, Kharguli from 30 December to 3 January. The resource persons with their inspiring animation programme helped everyone to appreciate and value the theme for the Congress: “Salesians, Be Holy.” The congress was graced by the presence of three Salesian bishops, the Salesian Regional Councillor Fr. Arokiam Kanaga, 12 Salesian Provincial Superiors from the region as well as Rectors of major formation houses. “The objective of the congress is to re-read Salesian history and get a true picture of oneself from the prism of the whole context of the Salesian Mission” said the Congress Chairman and Convener Br. Angelus Tete, Head of Department at Don Bosco Technical School Maligaon, Guwahati.
STATEMENT OF THE SEVENTH SALESIAN BROTHERS' CONGRESS
We are deeply convinced that God has lovingly called each of us to a life of intimate union with Him as persons dedicated to His sacred project of holiness (cf. 1 Pet 1:16). This is the essence of the call of GC 27, which invites us to be mystics, prophets, and servants. We understand that holiness is a single-minded, grace-enabled God-quest realized through an integral development of the physical, intellectual, social, and spiritual dimensions of our personalities, following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, who grew in wisdom, stature, and favour with God and people (cf. Lk 2:52). We are keenly aware, as our Father Don Bosco has indicated, that “the primary aim of our Society is the sanctification of its members”. We believe that we become saints by our loving, selfless, and intense commitment to our God-given mission, namely, the holistic education of the young, particularly the poor, the needy, and the marginalized. We are convinced of the great need to give more attention to our interior life and to a well-integrated way of living.
The 7th Salesian Brothers' Congress of South Asia was held at Don Bosco Institute, Guwahati (Assam, India), from 30 December 2013 to 3 January 2014. A total of 110 Brothers (perpetually professed and temporarily professed) and 22 priests participated in it. The Congress was officially inaugurated by Rev. Fr. Maria Arokiam Kanaga, the Regional Councillor for South Asia. It had as its theme the call of the Rector Major: 'Salesians, be holy' (AGC 379). In reflecting on this theme, we were amply assisted by the results of a regional survey on the Salesian Brother, the qualified inputs of 5 resource persons, and the enlightening discussion in groups and in the general assembly.
ORDINATIONS TO PRIESTHOOD The Lord has blessed our Province with the gift of five new Priests in 2014.
Fr. Jeremias Tirkey: The priestly ordination of Fr. Jeremias Tirkey took place on Sunday 12 January 2014 at Rowta Parish, Assam. Rt. Rev. Akasius Toppo D.D ordained him a priest in the presence of more than 40 priests and many religious and faithful who gathered to witness the great event. The celebration was solemn and devoutly conducted, befitting the occasion.
After having listened to one another and reflected together for 4 days, in an atmosphere of joyful prayer and characteristically Salesian community life, we the participants of the 7th Salesian Brothers' Congress of South Asia resolve to do the following during the next 5 years: 1. To pay great attention to regular personal and community prayer, using the Word of God as a springboard to our renewal and growth. 2. To grow deeper in the knowledge of Christ Jesus our Lord and of his sacred project for us by regular reflective reading of the Church's recent teachings on Consecrated Life and significant literature on the spirituality of Don Bosco.
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3. To commit ourselves to a personal plan of integral growth in the area of spiritual, intellectual, socio-emotional balance, physical development and of the cultivation of skills that serve our apostolic commitments.
4. To explore creative and relevant ways of striving for personal holiness and for promoting others' holiness through the apostolic work we are engaged in, thus making our apostolate the means of our sanctification. 5. To promote a culture of holiness in our settings, especially by personal witness, proposing holiness more explicitly, consciously encouraging those who strive to be holy, and being joyfully present among the young. We hope to realize this our project with the help and support of our Blessed Mother and the assistance of Don Bosco and the Salesian saints.
The new priest was accompanied by his relatives from his village to the Parish. The entrance procession was accompanied by a beautiful dance. The bishop in his sermon exhorted the newly ordained to be committed to his priestly office and in the practice of the religious vows. He asked the newly ordained to develop love for the people of God and work towards establishing God's kingdom on earth. The felicitation function that followed the Holy Mass was well attended. Everyone appreciated the way the ordination ceremony and the felicitation programme were organized. There was, obviously, much team work and cooperation among the santhal, bodo and Adivasi communities who are part of the Christians community of Rowta. Motto: â€œI have called you by name, you are mineâ€? (Is 43:1)
Fr. Ranjit Xalxo: The Catholic Church Tainser, Jharkhand, on 17 January 2014 was in a festive mood as one of her sons, Fr. Ranjit Xalxo, was ordained a priest. Rt Rev. Vincent Barwa DD, The Bishop of Simdega conferred the rite of ordination on Fr. Ranjit. A good number of priests, religious and large number of faithful were present for the ordination even though the weather was freezing cold. The Holy Mass was well organized and the Parish Priest and the parish community worked hard to make this ordination one of the most memorable events in the life of the Christians. After the Holy Mass, there was a short felicitation to congratulate the newly ordained. The felicitation programme was accompanied by dances and the beating of the drums as a sign of great joy to the Lord for giving to the Church a priest to serve the people of God.
Fr. Ranjit Xalxo
Fr. Pojit D. Marak
Motto: “I can do all things in Him who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13)
Fr. Albert T. Sangma & Fr. Pojit D. Marak: It was a double joy for the Christians of Mary Help of Christian Church, Satgoan, Asssam as 02 February 2014 was a day when the Parish witnessed the ordinations of two Salesians Fr. Albert Sangma and Fr. Pojit Philip Marak. The podium for the occasion was packed with people coming from nearby Parishes to witness this great event. Rt. Rev Andrew Marak, the Bishop of Tura ordained the new priests in the presence of Rt. Rev Paul Mattekatt, the Bishop of Diphu. During his sermon the bishop stressed on the importance of priesthood and the need to pray for more vocations to priesthood and religious life. He also said that to be an effective priest one has to prepare the daily sermon and homily “Priests of today are considered as internet priests… they only download the sermon from the internet, what is needed is that the sermon should be prepared after a personal reflection and personal conviction.” Bishop Andrew said. The singing and the ceremony was well conducted and was appreciated by those who attended the ordination. The parents, near and dear ones of the newly ordained priests were obviously moved to witness such a solemn ceremony. The Holy Mass which began at 10:00 am was followed by felicitation programme, to congratulate the newly ordained priests. Motto: “To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (Mic 6:8) “I am the Good Shepherd, who is willing to die for the sheep.” (Jn 10:11)
Fr. Albert T. Sangma
Fr. Bivan R. Mukhim
Fr. Bivan Rodriques Mukhim: Coinciding with the Platinum Jubilee year of the coming of the Catholic faith the Parish of Mawlai was proud to have the ordination of a Salesian Priest from the Parish. Fr. Bivan Rodriques Mukhim was ordained a priest of God by Most Rev. Dominic Jala SDB DD, the Bishop of Shillong on February 16, 2014 at St. Dominic Savio Parish, Mawlai. He was accompanied to the altar by his mother and relatives amidst thousands of faithful who gathered to witness this solemn occasion of ordination. Around 85 priests concelebrated in the Holy Mass. Many religious too participated in the ordination mass. During the sermon, Archbishop Dominic Jala encouraged parents to be generous in nurturing their children to join priestly and religious life. He also exhorted the new priest to be always faithful, obedient and above all a man of prayer. In his vote of thanks, the new Priest expressing his gratitude to God for the gift of Priestly vocation, affirmed that he was a priest today because of the graciousness of the God of impossibilities who translate impossibilities into possibilities. He recalled, with a sense of gratitude, all who were instrumental in his reaching the altar. The emotional content of Fr. Bivan's thanksgiving speech was evident in the spontaneous tears that trickled down the cheeks both of the speaker and the hearers. In the afternoon, there was the Annual Eucharistic procession and the adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in gratitude towards God for the priestly gift of Fr. Bivan. Motto: “I can do all things in Him who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13)
Fr. Jeremias Tirkey
APOSTOLIC ASSIGNMENTS OF NEW PRIESTS Fr. Jeremias Tirkey Asst. Parish Priest, Shallang Fr. Ranjit Xalxo Asst. Headmaster Don Bosco School, Tura Fr. Albert T. Sangma Asst. Parish Priest, Garobadha Fr. Pojit D. Marak Rome to complete his studies
NEW PRIESTS’ DAY
Fr. Bivan Rodriques Mukhim Associate Director, DBI, Ghy and In-charge- Social Communication
& FR. PROVINCIAL'S BIRTHDAY The New Priests' Day of Guwahati Province was held on 18 February 2014 at the Salesian Provincial House, Guwahati. The day was also the birthday of Rev Fr. V. M. Thomas, our beloved Provincial. The Holy Eucharist, celebrated by Fr. Provincial and concelebrated by four new priests and joined by 50 other priests, was the highlight of the day. The main celebrant welcomed the priests who came together to thank God for the gift of life given to him and the gift of five new priests to the province.
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Fr. Bivan R. Mukhim, newly ordained, shared in his sermon that the new priests were grateful to God for the gift of priesthood bestowed on them. He said it was a privilege for him to be a member of the Guwahati province as the province 'forges ahead in its mission with a vision', a vision to fulfill Don Bosco's dream. Fr. Albert Sangma, proposed the vote of thanks, expressing sincerest gratitude of the new priests to the Salesians who were instrumental in guiding them in their formation years.
At the get-together that followed the Eucharist, various communities and confreres felicitated the provincial on his birthday and the new priests. Fr. T. O Jose, Parish Priest of St. Joseph's co-cathedral spoke on behalf of the Salesians of the province extending a Happy Birthday wishes to the provincial. He also wished God's blessing in abundance to the five newly ordained priests. Fr. Thomas Lakra, the Vice Provincial thanked all those responsible for the success of the celebrations and exhorted the confreres to support the new priests will prayers.
FEAST DAY OF DON BOSCO CELEBRATED PROVINCIAL HOUSE: The religious Communities around Don Bosco Provincial House joined together for the Holy Mass celebrated by Archbishop of Guwahati Rev. John Moolachira to pay homage to the father of the young. The Archbishop in his sermon shared the life of Don Bosco from his childhood to his priesthood and the challenges he had to face during his entire life while working with the youth. He presented “Don Bosco” as the model for all people. He wished that the Sons and Daughters of Don Bosco imbibe the spirit of the founder. The Holy Mass was followed by get-together and dinner attended by number of priests and religious, Salesian co-operators, past pupils and hosts of government officials. Fr. Mario Porcu, a celebrated pioneer missionary, spoke on the dreams of Don Bosco and how his dreams had been realized through his priests and sisters. He encouraged the Salesians to work hard for the young especially the poor and the abandoned.
DB SCHOOL, KOKRAJHAR: Come January and the staff and students of Don Bosco School, Kokrajhar are all abuzz with preparations for the feast of our Father and Founder, Don Bosco. The celebration of Don Bosco's feast this year like in other years was marked by a novelty. A short skit on Don Bosco was put up to make the school students and the parents understand the beginning of the work of Don Bosco. In order to spread devotion to the Father and Teacher of Youth, the school community organised floral tribute to Don Bosco. The feast was opened out to a wide spectrum of people, including the parents. In the morning there was a special programme organized in the school campus. A food fest and housie game was organized on this occasion to raised money for the ongoing construction of the primary section. Pricey prizes were given to the winners of the housie game which included the students and the parents. ADBU AZARA: The Assam Don Bosco University started off its patron's day – Don Bosco's Feast day – with a solemn Eucharistic celebration at the University chapel at 7 am. Some of the faculty and students joined the celebration, accompanying the singing on keyboard and guitar. The feast day morning assembly was a joint one for both Schools of Technology and School of Social Sciences in celebrating 6th annual Don Bosco Feast Day at its Azara campus. There was an hour long homage program held at the atrium. The Campus Minister Dr Francis Fernandez and his team organized it. Besides messages from the Vice Chancellor Dr Stephen Mavely and Dr Manoranjan Kalita, Principal
of Don Bosco College of Engineering & Technology, there were short movies on the life of Don Bosco and the activities of the Salesians in northeast India. Students and faculty of the MSW Department vied with each other to honour Don Bosco with songs and dances. The Don Bosco University Volunteers running the Swastyayan program of free tuition class for senior high school children of the locality organized a 45-minute Don Bosco Divas (DB Day) at 4.00 pm under the leadership of Mr Victor Narzary and his collaborators. DBI: The young people at the Don Bosco Institute, Kharghuli had a taste of the celebrating spirit of the feast of Don Bosco which was held on the 31 January at the institute. The celebration of the feast included a religious prayer function, homage paid to the educator saint and friend of the youth and a cultural extravaganza in the evening. During the homage to Don Bosco, the Chief Guest Rev Fr. Thomas Lakra SDB, the Vice Provincial of the Province of Guwahati said that Don Bosco was a man of dream. “Through his dreams, he was able to convert it into reality and today Don Bosco's Society is spread over 134 countries of the world, giving quality education and helping young people to achieve the dreams they have for the future,” Fr. Thomas said. He encouraged those present at the programme to dream for a better future. He also wished the students to grab the maximum of the opportunity they received at the institute. During the sharing, number of students and staff members shared their experiences at various Don Bosco Institutions. Some even said that what they
Don Bosco, Kokrajhar
were today was because of the knowledge and guidance received from the Don Bosco fathers who dedicated their lives to spreading the charism of Don Bosco to many countries of the world. Santosh Murmu, a final year management student in his talk said that he left his village to study in a Don Bosco Institute at a very young age and even today he is still part and parcel of a Don Bosco organization. “In my life I have come across many Don Bosco's fathers, their hard work and spirit of sacrifice has really inspired me,” he said. The day had begun with prayers at the institute's amphitheatre and was attended by all the students and the teachers of the institute. The evening extravaganza and celebration of the feast of the father of the young was filled with games, dances, singing and a DJ programme for the young people at the institute.
Announcing th NATIONAL CONFERENCE
Confronting Challenges Facing 21st Century Education
May 21 - 23, 2014 For detail information, please contact +91 9085354331: Conference Secretary email: firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Last date of Registration: April 30, 2014
DB SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT MISSION (DBSIM) The Don Bosco School Improvement Mission (DBSIM) facilitated a two-day retreat for all DB Principals in the province on 21-22 January 2014. 21 schools from the province were represented. The Provincial, Fr. V M Thomas who inaugurated the session stressed on the need to offer the highest quality education to the young people particularly in the rural schools. DBSIM Programme Advisor Mr. George Kolath and Shashipur Principal Fr. M C George SDB facilitated the 2-day sessions.
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Most of the Principals present acknowledged the most promising outcome of the meeting was “a general consensus on the need of maintaining Don Bosco Brand in order to strengthen the network of DB Schools.”
“This calls for coordinated effort to upgrade all our schools to a minimum set of quality indicators by 2016 to offer competitive education to children and young people, very specially, the rural youth,” said Fr. Johnson Parackal, Director DBSIM. “DBSIM is aiming to work on the synergy of Don Bosco institutions through technical collaboration and self-funded resource mechanism. DB Principals have pledged on seed funding and annual contribution of 1% of total receipts at the school. The success and sustainability of DBSIM lies in participatory shared leadership,” said, Mr. Kolath. While DBSIM is working on a comprehensive school excellence programme including professional
Most principals have requested DBSIM to emphasise on teacher improvement in the classrooms and teaching methods as a priority considering that 50% of the current teachers in DB Schools do not have necessary qualifications to be effective teachers. The DBSIM Management Committee has also been formed which will be responsible for participatory leadership of various components of DBSIM. The Managing Committee consists of Fr. Johnson Parackal (Chair), Fr. JanuariusSangma (Co-Chair), Fr. M C George (Infrastructure), Br. Benjamin Rosant (Co-Curricular), Fr Damian Basumatary (Teacher Coordination), Fr. Sebastian Mathew (Budgetting/ Resource Mobilisation), and Fr. P D Johny (Curriculum/Teacher Training). DBSIM Secretariat confirmed that some of the immediate activities planned include teacher surveys, an institutional audit of all DB Schools in partnership with Assam Don Bosco University (ADBU), and DB Teachers Meet 2014.
ASSAM DON BOSCO UNIVERSITY NEWS ADBU hosts International Conference on Education The Assam Don Bosco University in collaboration with Guwahati University and its global partners hosted an International Conference on Education, from 24 to 26 February 2014 at its Azara Campus. Over 70 scholars and academicians from 26 university colleges participated at the conference including participants from Ireland, and the Republic of Maldives.
Gracing the inaugural function were Vice Chancellors of Don Bosco and Guwahati Universities along with keynote speaker Dr Garret Campbell CEO of Global Schoolroom and Coconvener Dr. Gayatree Goswamee, Head of Education Department, Guwahati University. The teaching to learning conference seeks reconceptualization of higher education within the emerging environment of ICT: a reference to Northeast India.â€? It is designed with three purposes says Conference Convener Dr. Paul Pudussery, Head of Education Department, Assam Don Bosco University. First, to understand the present scenario of our education system - a fundamental reconceptualization of what curriculum is, how it functions, and how it might function in emancipatory ways. Second, to re-conceptualize higher education within the emerging environment of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Third, to understand the developing trend of education - its implications in classroom teaching and learning. Some 40 scholarly papers were presented under nine thrust areas to give ample time for discussions and deliberations. The nine technical sessions include: Teaching to Learning; ICT as a Subject and as a Tool; ICT in Pedagogy; Emerging Environment of ICT and its Impact; Education and Psychology; Education & Northeast India; Teacher Education and Northeast India; Education for 21st Century and Theories of Learning. The organizers say, â€œthis conference is envisaged for academicians to understand the emerging educational reality, to gauge its demands, and to
leadership development, infrastructure, institutional policy and system development, it will initially focus on staff professional development in 2014.
address these challenges.” Besides offering an opportunity to explore policies, laws, leadership styles, values, social change, philosophy, technology, pedagogies and ethnic diversity from an educational perspective, the Conference will challenge participants to critically examine the conceptual, organizational, political, social, legal, managerial, interpersonal, and technical dimensions of current and future educational system. Underlining the role of education today, the Vice Chancellor Dr. Stephen Mavely insists, “creation of an enabling environment is one of most pressing demands made on educational institutions today, an environment that would be conducive for the formation of dependable human persons - thoughtful citizens, competent parents, faithful friends, capable workers, generous neighbors and lifelong learners.”
Students stay fit with health checkup at ADBU A university in northeast India ensures that its students stay healthy while pursuing their academic studies. The Assam Don Bosco University (ADBU) has been conducting health check up for all its staff and students from its inception five years ago. ADBU “could be the only university in India having such programme,” says Dr Shantanu Kumar Das founder director of Project Child, a Guwahati-based Non Governmental Organization which provides emergency, preventive, promotive and curative aspect of Health Care while addressing all health related needs.
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During the week-long session, all students, both graduates and undergraduates and faculty undergo routine health check up. Last month, the entire university community had taken vaccination to prevent Japanese Encephalitis common in Assam.
“This is a great help to ensure my health. I am happy that my eyesight is good,” says Rituja Saikia of Electronic Communication Engineering 3rd year student who is happy that she need not increase the power of her glasses. Every student has a Health Record Book which contains the details of health condition over the years. The 12-year-old Project “CHILD” an initiative of Society for Promotion of Student Health (SPSH) is the oldest and most compressive School Health Programme of Assam. It has a group of 29 doctors, all specialists in their respective fields like Eye, ENT, Dental, Lifestyle specialist, Internal medicine,
Surgery, Gynecologist, Pediatrician and General Practitioner who provide complete health solution. Female students are counseled by a lady gynecologist on how to notice abnormalities in their body and when to report it to medical experts. The Ambulance placed in the university provides for prompt and safe transfer of the student or faculty to his or her house or to the hospital during any medical emergency. Both male and female nurses are provided under the program in the campus and look after all medical cases with the support and advice from the emergency medical doctor. For program`s Hospital tie-up, all major hospitals including both private and government in the city are empanelled to provide prompt attention to any student coming through the program. In all hospitals nodal doctors are also enrolled and they act as the primary attending doctor. The program also provides an amount of money sufficient for the initial management of the cases. The infirmary at the university is monitored by doctors by the use of Telemedicine, where any medical emergency is managed under the guidance of a doctor who can see the patient and have a personal interaction with the patient via the use of telemedicine. The group also won a national E-Health Award for the innovative use of technology for health.
Leadership education through Music In a novel workshop held at Assam Don Bosco University's School of Technology, a professional violinist and her collaborators imparted lessons in creativity and leadership through music. Acclaimed Assamese violinist Ms. Sunita Bhuyan from Mumbai gave a two hour presentation to the students and faculty on 22 January.
DON BOSCO TEZPUR The foundation stone for Don Bosco Social Institute, Tezpur was laid by Bishop Robert Kerketta SDB on 8th December, 2013. It is an initiative taken by the Salesian Province of Guwahati to skill rural youth. “It has been our dream, over 40 years now, to start something for skills training of rural unemployed youth in Tezpur where Salesian pioneer missionaries established missions before 1970s,” said Fr V.M. Thomas, Salesian Provincial of Guwahati. Among other dignitaries present at the colourful foundation stone laying ceremony were Vice Chancellor of Tezpur University, Dr Mihir Kanti Chaudhuri, Vice Chancellor of Assam Don Bosco University, Dr Stephen Mavely, and former Salesian Provincial of Guwahati, Dr Joseph Almeida. The proposed institute will offer training programme in Office Management, Hospitality, Youth Leadership, Teachers and Principals Training
program to ensure quality education. The institute will also be engaged in advocacy, research and publication. Speaking about the Don Bosco group at the occasion Dr Chaudhuri said, “If they (Salesians) wish and they have decided to do something, God is there, and it will happen.” He insisted on training the youth of the region in, ``attitude, aptitude and skill development,`` as the most important role of the new institution. To make his wish concrete, Tezpur University Vice Chancellor pledged support not only financially but also offering Tezpur University`s School of Technology, both labs and faculty, at the new institute`s disposal. Over 500 people participated at the event which was laced with cultural program from youth groups of neighboring institutions, including a spirited and enthralling Assamese bihu dance by local cultural troupe.
She uses music as a tool for holistic development for corporate, social and academic groups and has presented music led programs at various forums in India and abroad. A recipient of the Indira Gandhi Priyadarshini award for Music, Bhuyan was accompanied by her mother and guru, veteran violinist Minoti Khaund. After the invocation song, Bhuyan explained the two essential element in music as sur (melody) and tal(rhythm) which comes out of the mind of the artist through sound waves and reaches the audience evoking musical experiences. She also told about the healing and therapeutic properties of music which can help slow down human system and bring down high blood pressure and fight stress.
Just like sur and tal, and the seven musical notes need to be highly disciplined to produce musical harmony, she emphasized that leaders complement team members to achieve success. Bhuyan also played a Bihu tune from her latest folk fusion album ``Bihu Strings`` which happens to be the only Bihu album on violin.
She encouraged some 1,200 students and faculty to “deepen the depth of their area of expertise” so that “the depth of domain could help widen their flexibility to tackle demanding situations.”
VOCATION CAMPS The Salesian Vocation camps for classes VI &VII boys was conducted at four regions of the Salesian province of Guwahati – Dec 27 – 30 at Don Bosco Barpeta Road, Jan 2 – 5, 2014 at Bosco Mount Rongkhon, Jan 9 – 12 at Don Bosco Centre Sirajuli, and Jan 15 – 19 at Don Bosco Sojong. The vocation camps were successful in spite of bandhs and inconveniences. Altogether, about 60 boys joined for the camps and 35 boys were selected who will be joining Don Bosco Apostolic School Barpeta Road Assam. We support them through our encouragement and prayers.
Dr. Martin Kasper visits Guwahati Province Dr. Martin Kasper, Managing Director of Child Aid Network, Germany and a friend and benefactor visited the province in March 2014. He visited the CARE schools, Snehalaya centres and the outreach centres of the province. Dr. Kasper has been instrumental in facilitating two volunteers from Accenture – Germany who will be assisting Don Bosco Maligaon for three weeks.
MESSAGE FROM THE VOCATION PROMOTER
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Every Salesian or religious is a vocation promoter. If, we really love our own vocation and mission then surely we have every reason to look for and encourage the boys who show some interest and signs of priesthood and religious life. Finding vocation is like selecting a small sapling for plantation which will bear fruit after many years. In the same way every boy who joins us will bear fruit after long awaiting and preparation. However we need to have patience and help the person to grow through our encouragement and accompaniment. For us as human being, vocation is a mystery. We often make mistake of taking the best boys and at the end make them zeros while God takes a hopeless persons and makes them heroes as we see in the Holy Bible – Heroes of God's making – Abraham was too old, Jacob was a liar, Moses stuttered and ran away from the palace out of fear, Noah was drunk and misbehaved with his own daughters, David was unfaithful and treacherously killed his faithful soldiers, Solomon was pompous and rich, Amos was just a farmer, Hosea suffered his wife's unfaithfulness, Jeremiah was depressed, suicidal and at times he cursed his own birth, Elijah was doubtful and fled from his mission out of fear, Gideon was a coward and doubtful, Johan ran away from God and could not stand God's forgiving love, Naomi was a widow, Elizabeth was barren, Peter was timid and impatient, Paul was a persecutor and a religious bigot, Mathew was a tax collector and social misfit, Thomas was hesitating to believe, Martha was workaholic, Mark was often homesick and rejected by Paul, Timothy had ulcers, Barnabas was partial, Johnny Bosco was a semi orphan and poor. But they gave in generously to God's shaping hands. God realized his project through their strength and weaknesses.
I am ever grateful to all those who lend their helping hand all through the vocation camps. Their Salesian presence and availability contributed a lot for the smooth running of the program. I am also grateful to all the Rectors and Parish Priests of different houses and parishes especially wherever the camps were being conducted for their welcoming, helping hand, encouragement and prayerful supports. I appreciate the lay persons and religious / Salesians who take interest and encourage the boys who want to be a religious and priest to continue the mission of Christ. If you come in contact with some young people who have some interest to join us, then do inform the person concern. Fr. Thadeus Kujur sdb Vocation Promoter firstname.lastname@example.org 9859938434
Season of Grace
The iBreviary app now offers Salesian `proper` liturgies for the IOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch). It will soon be made available for smart phones and other Android devices. A brainchild of Fr Paolo Padrini - parish priest of San Giorgio in Stazzano, the app is promoted by the Custodia Terrae Sanctae and the Pro Terra Sancta Association in association with the Social Communications department. Either by downloading or updating iBreviary, one can activate Salesian Proper Liturgies during the setting up of the app. On the appropriate days in the Salesian liturgical calendar, the app provides special texts for the Liturgy of the Hours and the Eucharist. It is available from the Apple Store and on sdd.org with user instructions, in Italian, English and French. Fr Filiberto Gonzalez (General Councillor for Social Communications) says: “The commitment of the Department, especially ANS, to produce an app with Salesian Proper Liturgies arises from a conviction based on faith and our charism: celebrating the presence of God in human history, seeking to follow the Son of God who became flesh to make present the love of the Father, and offering young people an experience of prayer which is intimate, simple and joyous as they communicate daily with God.” Fr Paolo Padrini, has been associated with the Pope2You project of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications and is a Church Communications consultant. The project has been pioneered as part of the preparations for the bicentenary of Don Bosco`s birth. A young Salesian says ``this is the way forward. it will also perhaps eliminate having an additional book.`` Another iPhone-totting Salesian says “I`ve not yet tried it out, but it sure sounds fantastic.`` Yet another exclaims excitedly ``I don`t have an iPhone or iPod, but I`m waiting for the Android app. It will be of tremendous use at camps.”
Now, it is not out of sheer coincidence that the Church's liturgical season of Lent coincides with nature's season of Spring that marks a transition of deprivation to fullness of life in nature. The real aim of Lent is to prepare Christians for the celebration of the resurrection of Christ, renewing in us the power of redemption and appropriating its effects for us. We can effectively relive the mystery only with purified mind and heart. For Lent to bear fruits in us, it is essential to meditate on the positive element of growth in virtue and to resolutely take on exercises of piety and the works of charity throughout this season. How about, thus, on a positive note, besides (instead of) the conventional denial of food and material abstinence, letting go of our undue attachment to things to fasten our hearts unto Christ as did Zacchaeus of the Gospels, trading humility for pride with the publican of Jesus' parable as the model, refraining from merciless judgments of others to appreciate the richness that differences bequeaths, essaying a benevolent option on behalf of the needy and the poor to feel the pain of the less privileged, investing an extra hour closing in on a serious reflection on a book of religious substance? I express my wish that all may spend this precious time rekindling the faith in Jesus Christ, so as to enter with him into the dynamic of love for the Father and for every brother and sister that we encounter in our lives.” Fr. Bivan Rodriques Mukhim
Salesian ‘proper’ liturgies now on iBreviary
Seated rather comfily over a cup of coffee at the dining, sneaking a look through the window at the mighty Brahmaputra, I chanced upon a couple of Mango trees festooned with white fuzzy buds blooming to life anew. The first greens are treat-full of life, vitality and freshness of Spring. The very trees which just a couple of weeks ago bore a withered look and drooping spirit bereaved of their dressing are yet again budding with the hope of renewed and rejuvenated freshness. One’s heart can't but flutter in the breeze of renewal and regrowth of these trees standing tall bearing a resurrected story having weathered bravely the frost and snow of the biting cold winter. Wonder how and why this rapid, visible, spectacular and apparently indecipherable makeover in the nature around us! Oh yeah! Nature is silently heralding the magnificent Spring - one of the four conventional temperate seasons, following winter and preceding summer - wherein trees decked with flowers and peppered with fresh green leaves toss about their heads swaying gently yet proudly to the warm waves invading from lower latitudes.
CENTENARY CELEBRATIONS AT ROMAN MARJONG VILLAGE The Centenary celebration of the coming of the Catholic faith to Roman Marjong Village of Umswai Parish was held on 15 – 16 February 2014. Six Karbis of Roman Marjong Village were baptized at Umtyrkhang on 25 January 1914. Their resolute faith and perseverance sowed the seeds of Catholic faith and spread to the entire Karbi Anglong and N.C.Hills. Our Lady of the Rosary Church and a monument were set up to commemorate the occasion. Looking back at the past 100 years one cannot but exclaim with the psalmist, “This is the work of God!”
NEWSLINE, GUWAHATI PROVINCE
Reaching out to the marginalized in the Don Bosco's Way, the CARE school initiated by DBI is taking a step forward by venturing into new areas with the programme. This year CARE school is extending the service to 60 schools in the remotest areas of BTAD. The CARE school programme was the initiative of Fr. V M Thomas, provincial and the founder of DBI to look after the children who are deprived of schooling. CARE schools also initiated Community Development Programme in villages through Self Help Groups and Women Empowerment Programmes. Currently the CARE schools are serving 5000 children offering them a privilege place in the society through education.
Blessing of Don Bosco Girl's Hostel, Amguri Don Bosco Amguri celebrated on 11 Feb 2014 when a new Girl's Hostel and Immaculate Conception Convent was Blessed by Fr. VM Thomas, Provincial and inaugurated by Mr. Kampa Borgoyary, Deputy Chief, BTAD. A number of priests and religious and representative from the government and nongovernment organization added charm to the whole ceremony. The upgraded dormitory and the general environment is a marked improvement of habitat for some of the most underprivileged children affected by community clashes. During the programme, the children thanked the Salesians and the benefactors for giving them opportunities to succeed through education.
Blessing cum Inauguration of Don Bosco Church, Sashipur There was added joy for the Catholics of Sashipur, Kumarikatta Parish when on the Feast Day of St. John Bosco a Church dedicated to the Father of the young was blessed by Fr. VM Thomas, Provincial and inaugurated by Fr. MC George, Principal, Don Bosco School, Sashipur. Fr. Johnson Parackal, the Director of DBI, Fr. Cornelius Panna, Fr. Bhaskar Raj and Fr. Paul Vadakumpadan were also present for the blessing of the new church.
The message of Fr Carlo Melis to the Chapter In the past weekend some of the Chapter members went to visit Fr Carlo Melis, SDB, a man who had helped in the formation of generations of Salesians, including some who are now part of the General Council. Fr. Melis had ?a valuable suggestion for his past pupils who were participating in the 27th General Chapter. Sunday, 2 March, marked the watershed between the preparatory phase of the Chapter and the Chapter itself. The retreat ended at lunchtime and the Chapter members had the rest of the day free. Three of them decided to visit Fr Melis in hospital The three were Fr Fabio Attard, Councillor for Youth Ministry, Fr VĂctor Pichardo, Provincial of the Antilles, and Fr Michael Pace, Delegate from the United States East. Fr Melis had been one of their formators during their time as students of Theology. As usually happens when people meet
again after a long time, they reminisced with Fr Melis about the time they spent together. They were thankful for the important role he had played in their spiritual growth and their journey to priesthood. Before they took leave, they exchanged blessings and recited a Hail Mary together. There was just enough time for Fr Melis to give some significant advice regarding one of the most important tasks of the Chapter, the election of a new Rector Major, who will be the tenth successor of Don Bosco. These were his words: "Be sure to elect a new Rector Major who has the heart of Don Bosco, a man who is fatherly and who will guide the confreres well, with a deep spirituality. Do not worry too much about the administration ... it is of secondary importance. Choose a Rector Major with the heart of a father." Source: (ANS - Rome)
The official logo of the Bicentenary of the birth of Don Bosco was released on 8th December, 2013. It will accompany all the commemorative celebrations of the year, scheduled to last from 16 August 2014 to 16 August 2015. The theme will be: â€œThe Mission of Don Bosco with and for young people.â€? The icon designed by a graphic artist, Emigli Fabrizio depicts the impact of the figure of Don Bosco and that of young people and the Salesian Family. This logo suggests that 200 years after the birth of Don Bosco, the Salesian Family the vast movement founded by him - is united along the way he has shown us, in joy, in fidelity to the Gospel and to the Church and to the charism.
Don Bosco Provincial House Panbazar, Guwahati - 781001, Assam, India Tel: 0361 - 2510458 n www.donboscoguwahati.org Chief Editor : Fr. Bivan R. Mukhim n Associate Editor : Fr. Zacharias Varickasseril n DTP : DBI, Guwahati Email: email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org