The warmest greetings from a beautiful and hospitable country, Samoa! I have been here for 28 days. Thank God, I am very happy here, after my English language study in Ireland and long time waiting for the visa. I have received the missionary cross from the Rector Major in September 2015 and was assigned to the Australia – Pacific Province few months ago. My first impression was the small and nice road on the way to the community from the airport. It is decorated quite simple by white-small rocks and the hedge on two sides, but very beautiful.
I always try to be aware of my life as being born again in a new world, so I try to forget and not compare anything with places I had lived before. I’m trying to participate in the Eucharist, ceremonies, meetings although I do not understand what they are saying in Samoa. I was able to visit some families with our Salesian Fathers and Brothers in order to learn little by little this new culture.
I have started a little bit Samoan language and found some information about culture, food, religion, weather on the internet when I knew I would be sent to Samoa. Now, I am studying Samoan with help of Don Bosco School students and Salesian confreres in our community.
This school year we have in our Educative and Pastoral community 5 priests, 4 practical trainees, 7 pre-novices, 1 volunteer about 180 students. As I know, there are some changes for the next school year (February), we will have 4 priests, 5 temporary professed Salesians and 3 pre-novices. We are happy that our pre-novices will continue to Fiji for their novitiate.
I was deeply impressed by the Samoan lifestyle – way of living – Fa’asamoa. Samoan people are very friendly, simple and hospitable through their way of communication with others. I’m attracted by the way of greeting their guests, specially at meals; by their food, their roads; their houses; their decorations and also by their language.
At the end of this first month in the Pacific Delegation (Samoa – Fiji – New Zealand) i’m happy to be here. But I also strongly feel, that we need more missionaries for two following reasons: (1) For the Pacific Delegation an international – intercultural community is very important, especially in formation houses like Don Bosco Alafua. (2) For the sake of the mission especially in our technical schools.
Please, pray for me, pray for Samoa and for the Pacific Delegation!