January 13, 2013 marked the opening of a new community for the Salesian Sisters in Samoa. On the main island of Upolo, above the capital city of Apia there is a growing community of people seeking safety from the sea and the constant threat of a tsunami, those looking for a cooler place to live in an era of climate change and those seeking to find a home for extended families.
This was the theme of Sr Faâ€™asifo Semi, who made her first profession as a Salesian Sister on Saturday December 8th in the Parish Church of St John Bosco in Engadine, NSW. Faâ€™asifo is the youngest of 6 children and two of them, her sister Leticia and her brother Faâ€™avale were able to join her for this special occasion. Her mother Malie is ready to welcome her home after Christmas. Faâ€™asifoâ€™s father passed away a few years ago.
I visited Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, in early December 2012 and carried away with me many positive impressions.
A country of great natural beauty, it has been described by Aung San Suu Kyi as â€śA golden land favoured by natureâ€¦ an extremely beautiful land, peopled by many different races.â€ť Myanmar borders China, Thailand, India, Laos and Bangladesh. Its civilisation is more than 2500 years old. The nation has developed along the banks of the Ayeyarwady River.
Skills for life and life changing skills
In the words of Fr Joseph Cong Thanh (Rector and Principal), the Don Bosco at Tetere in the Solomon Islands is more than a rural training centre.
â€śThe 120 young men and women enrolled in courses learn skills for life as well as how to change their lives,â€ť Fr Joseph said. â€śIt is our aim to provide them with the opportunity, through their training, to learn and develop themselves intellectually, spirituality and physically â€“ to give up bad habits and become better human beings. â€śWe are blessed that this work has been generously supported by an Australian Rotary Club,â€ť he added.
On Saturday, 9th February, members of the Salesian Family and friends of Don Bosco in New Zealand gathered in St Malachiâ€™s, Ranui, to solemnly celebrate the Feast of Don Bosco, and a wonderful celebration it was. All those who attended the celebration were loud in their praises of Don Bosco and grateful to the organisers.
The Cagliero Project office in January was full of excitement as we were preparing to send four new volunteers overseas to work for young people. The formation retreat in January at Lysterfield brought together volunteers from previous years and a wide group of guest speakers, whose presentations were extremely inspiring.
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