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A new start - MISSIONS - East Asia Oceania region

  07:25:00 am, by Klement   , 132 words  

A new start - MISSIONS - East Asia Oceania region

March 28, 2014


From the world wide animation of the MISSIONS to the East Asia Oceania region!

This day changed again the life of some Salesians who were called to serve the Salesian Congregation as Regional councilors. Seven Salesians... and seven regions (one less!).

Coming back again to the beloved EAO 'our region' - I will spend the whole of Sunday with my successor Fr. Guillermo as the new Councilor for the Missions - to facilitate the smooth hand over of the contacts, processes, people and territories, provinces to follow etc.

The 2015 Salesian Mission Day poster is the expression of continuity. Another Salesian missionary in charge to 'foster in the whole Congregation the missionary spirit and commitment'...

Please, pray for us.... 

Suddenly from Cagliero to Versiglia and Caravario...

St. John Bosco, pray for us!

Poor Salesians for the poor Youth (1) No electricity

  04:25:00 pm, by Klement   , 347 words  

Poor Salesians for the poor Youth (1) No electricity


Thanks be to God for the new Rector Major coming from Buenos Aires and for his Vicar, experienced General Councilor for formation. Two happy days with a strong feeling of the presence and guidance of the Holy Spirit.

 Yes, the elections of the 14 general councilors is going on, BUT the main underlining issue of this GC27 - about WITNESS to the RADICAL APPROACH to the GOSPEL - is still an open questions. We need very badly the help of the Holy Spirit - to be his instruments, as daily reminded by Fr. Jose Cristo Rey Garcia Paredes, Claretian!

Just one point about the 'main' commodity of the rich part of the world - electric power! Indeed to be spoilt of some basic comodities is a part of an ordinary poor life in many parts of the world!

Electricity has become so normal in our everyday living that when it goes out we can become iritated, at least I do anyhow.

I can’t read in the dark, cook in the dark, or even find my way to the bathroom.

I can’t even find my candles. So I sit there waiting, praying, “God, please put the electricity back on so I can do something, anything.”

Without electricity I am faced with a serious problem:

life without things to entertain me.

I don’t have my phone charged so I can’t play games.

I can’t read my books. I can’t use the internet.

What do I do now? This is a problem I often faced overseas.

I did learn some things when the power was out though, especially about myself. In many visited African, American or Asian 'mission lands' it's a daily challenge:

Life without electricity is teaching us:

1.   I don’t need electricity to live.

2.   I don’t need ‘stuff’ to entertain me.

3.   I am not entitled to electricity. It’s not a human rights issue.

4.   I let things like the power going out affect me too much.

5.   I can always pray more.

Indeed the 'most prayerful communities are in the Papua New Guinea jungleOR in other electricity-free missions...


What have power out (black out)s taught you?

Witness (7) Martyrs - missionaries March 24

  09:40:00 am, by Klement   , 195 words  

Witness (7) Martyrs - missionaries March 24


Already for last 22 years this day of March 24 we remember the 'MISSIONARIES - MARTYRS' around the world.

Indeed, this is just the top of the iceberg of disciples - missionaries of Jesus killed every year for their faith witness & proclamation in many parts of the world. Since 1980 the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples (Propaganda Fide) counts some 1100+ 'martyrs - pastoral agents' all around the world. In past few years the majority are killed in Latin America and are priests.

However, we know, that at least some 50.000 Christians are killed every year for the confession of their faith and their life-witness to Jesus Christ.

This day of discernment for the new Rector Major of the Salesians, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit we try to select the leader of radical testimony to the Gospel for next 6 years. Under the protection of Mary, Help of Christians (=March 24) and with Her help!

The comment of Pope Francis gives us a good indication to point to the essentials:

'We remember those missionaries who in all simplicity and withouth many noise are working every day for the Gospel and even giving their life every day for Christ' (World Mission Day 2013)

Witness (6) Missionary fire

  01:32:00 pm, by Klement   , 192 words  

Witness (6) Missionary fire

General Chapter of the Salesians - March 20

Today we are voting, correcting the proposals about the radical lifestyle of the Salesians! It's rather slow, not-so-easy process which requirs a lot of patience.

To be always on the way - cammino/ pilgrim attitude.

To be always searching for God, never granted that I know Jesus Christ 'already enough'

To be always open to my brothers and build community - 'casa' with family spirit (in spite of all)!

To be always close to the youth, especially the most poor, trying to be poor too!

These are the pointers of our journey to the future of Salesian Congregation. And we need badly the living witnesses - indicators to this journey.

I know quite well one African missionary, who last year re-entered his homeland (from other African country). But he always on fire to start a new missionary group in any place, he was sent.

On the picture you will find ordinary Salesian school in Congo, RD where they just started under the 'Salesian Mission Day 2014' poster (on the photo!) with the migrant - refugee point (The others are we!) as the starting point for the children and youth missionary group!

Witness (5) Marathon for Mission

  01:19:00 pm, by Klement   , 455 words  

Witness (5) Marathon for Mission

Witness  by Marathon... for Cambodia

Michael the Mission Marathon Man

KOREA: 17 March 2014 
-- In Seoul the forsythia (sunny splashes of bright yellow flowers) are letting us know that spring is budding. As the door is closed on winter, hopes turn to the colours and scents that flowers represent. So too, many youngsters in the springtime of life in Poipet, Cambodia, preparing for a bright future, may have picked up a rather special 'scent', sweaty though it may be: a marathon in Seoul on their behalf.

The protagonist of the story was Fr Michael Chang, head of the Mission Office as well as Provincial Economer. Fr Michael took part in the Seoul International Marathon run by Dong -A Ilbo, a major newspaper in Korea. It's called 1 won for 1m, an appeal to the people to participate in fundraising activities for supporting the missions by depositing 42,195 Won (about 40 USD) per head.

He had already completed the full marathon course four times when he was the principal of Salesian High School in Kwangju. His idea then was to run with his students to help them overcome the difficulties they meet in the marathon of life and help them feel that they were being accompanied by the Salesians. Now he has added a new meaning to it all - to the help the missions. His former high school colleagues who ran with him at that time gladly took up the invitation to join him in this marathon for the missions.

"The Marathon started out as an educational idea, but it seems that the Lord is happy to work through simple means. Don Bosco Youth Center in Poipet, where two Salesian  Korean missionaries are currently working (Fr Gabriel and Fr Mark) until now have been supported by help coming from European countries. Hearing their difficulty in managing things because the economic crisis in Europe has seen a great reduction in aid, I thought of planning this event."

Fr Michael launched a ten day Marathon campaign, from 5 to 15 March, and received a great response, about 500 individuals, who raised 21,000,000 Won (about 20,000 USD). A double success from the project: "I kept running to the end, carrying with me the prayer intentions of benefactors who took part in the campaign. I can tell you there were critical moments when I wanted to give up the race, but I managed to find some big strides, thinking that with this effort I could contribute to the realisation of the dream of many boys in the missions."

Fr Michael ran for six hours non-stop, face drenched in sweat, legs almost conspiring against him. The smile, however, spoke of the unfailing joy of completing a race which plants a seed of hope for young people who do not find it easy to dream.

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