Fr Mario Yamanouchi the vice provincial of Japan was the tour guide as 18 confreres made their pilgrimage to the Salesian places in France and Italy. They started on the 18th of August and they returned on the 29th. This 10-day pilgrimage includes Annecy- the place of St Francis de Sales, Valdocco-Turin and Castelnuovo with other nearby towns. Then Rome, of course, where the 10th successor of Don Bosco, Fr Angel Fernandez Artime, SDB is at work.
On August 29, they had toured the Vatican and other Roman sites. Before going to the airport, their last 5 hours were spent in the Generalate where they met the Rector Major, had their photo sessions and then lunch.
They had a short conference where they arranged the chairs in a circle. Fr Urata translated the Rector Major’s talks while Fr Mario would add some comments from time to time. During this session, it was impressive to note that the Rector Major was so interested to hear from the confreres, both young and old. At two different occasions he asked for comments and listened to their reactions.
One of the significant messages of the Rector Major was that during the GC27, we Salesians have discerned where we should be going to, and we have become aware again that, like Don Bosco, we go where we are needed by the young, to those who are poor and marginalized (in the periphery).
When a province does not expect to change, when they want to remain self-contented, even if they are already a bit far from the spirit of Don Bosco, then that province is going down.
It is good that we are feeling sensitive about following Christ radically like Don Bosco; questioning ourselves about it always. So, share it with other confreres. Talk about it in your province. But be tranquil in your ways for change, and continue to have a courageous heart, without being discouraged because of the slow changes.
You Salesians of Japan should have a face of Don Bosco with a Japanese style, but should also have the oratorian heart, Valdocco style.
Source: The AustraLasia