124 Young Men become SalesiansWritten by Fr Frank Freeman SDB
In our region of the Salesian world, young Salesians make their profession on 24 May, the Feast of Mary Help of Christians, the Patroness of the Salesian Society. May is the month of Mary and the month of professions – especially in Salesian Asia! During the recent month of May, and on 24th, 124 young men in the two Asian Salesian Regions – Southern Asia and East Asia and Oceania – made their first profession and became sons of Don Bosco.
The first novices to make their profession were four young men from the Thailand Province. Among them history was made, for John Bosco Somony and John Bosco Nary Phen became the first two Cambodians to make their religious profession as Salesians.
Pleasing as well and most welcome was the news that, on the eve of the Feast of Mary Help of Christians, nine novices of Myanmar (Burma) made their profession. The young men, all of Burmese nationality, said their “Yes” to the Salesian Congregation in the presence of the Superior of the Vice-Province, Fr Maurice Vallence.
In the Philippines, on Monday 6 May, ten young men made their first religious vows – five from the Northern Filipino Province, three from the Southern Filipino Province and two from China.
While going back a little, 3 novices from Korea were professed on 24 January. In the novitiate in Fiji, Suva, which is also the novitiate for the Australian Province, there would usually be professions on 31 January, but there were no novices in 2012. Instead the house will reopen its doors for a new group of novices who will then presumably make their profession on 31 January 2014.
Also on 24 May, Feast of Mary Help of Christians, 101 novices from the seven Indian novitiates finished their novitiate and pronounced their first vows. They came from the 12 Salesian provinces of India and Sri Lanka which make up the South-Asia Region. Worth noting also that, during the same time, 42 young men from the South American novitiates and 7 from the Africa-Madagascar Region joined the 124 above as Salesians.
The province of Vietnam, which is part of our East Asia-Oceania Region, will profess 19 novices in August of this year.
Religious professions in other regions of the Salesian world usually take place in the latter part of the year, especially on the feasts of Our Lady.
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