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First South Asia Seminar of Salesian History Lovers lauded as scholarly

By Gilbert Choondal SDB
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Bangalore, Nov. 18. The Three-day seminar on Salesian Identity and History in India organised by ACSSA  (Association of Salesian History Lovers) under the able leadership of Fr. Mathew Kapplikunnel concluded on 17 November 2013 on a successful note.
The highlight of the seminar was the visit to the United Thelogoical College where they visited the archives and library.  \\\\''This has created an awareness in us with regard to the conservation of our past. Visit to the library and archives of UTC was very fruitful and informative\\\\'', said Fr Mahimai Das, Professor of Church History at Kristu Jyoti College, one of the participants of the seminar. ''With over 100 years of Salesian presence in India, this seminar was long overdue. Implanting Salesian charism in a non-Christian context there is a lot we can, or, we have contributed to the charism. It is high time that Indian colours shine brightly in the Salesian rainbow,'' insisted Sr Philomena FMA, another participant at the seminar.

Almost of all the participants appreciated the organization, resources and topics of the seminar. Kudos to Fr. Matthew Kapplikunnel who was the mastermind behind the entire ACSSA programme.  The seminar helped many participatns to love and appreciate the rich heritage of the Salesian history. Besides being informative, it also created an interest in loving the past and preserving and conserving it for future generations. Encountering and listening to the eminent historians has given further motivation to love and appreciate the past and honour the significant contributions made by the founders of Salesian heritage.  ''It has increased our appreciation for our Salesian patrimony and convinced us of our duty to preserve it\\\\'', said Sr Cecily Thomas FMA from Bangalore.

The presence of Fr. Stanislaw Zimniak SDB from Rome added more scholarliness to the entire seminar. Earlier on the last day of the seminar, Fr. Thomas Anchukandam, the provincial of Bangalore, distributed certificate of honour to the participants. He also thanked Fr. Mathew Kapplikunnel in the name of all the participants for organizing such a seminar for the first time in South Asia.

The Participants felt that the seminar was scholarly, informative and well organised. However, it witnessed the absence of complete representation of South Asia. The organisers felt that there should have been adequate representation of the SDB provinces. However the FMA provinces were well represented.



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