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Leadership Development and Training Programme for the Leaders of the Salesian Province of Mumbai

By Father Joaquim Fernandes
The Provincial, Fr. Godfrey D`Souza along with the Provincial Council and Salesians
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Mumbai, Jun. 20. The Salesian Province of Mumbai had their Leadership and Development programme for all the Leaders of the Salesian Communities at Don Bosco Provincial House,Matunga, Mumbai from 19th-20th June, 2018. Father  Savio Silveria,Vice Provincial  welcomed the  Forty Five Salesians for introspection and animation and to strengthen the charism of our Founder Don Bosco.  
Father Godfrey D'Souza, Provincial, addressed the august audience and highlighted the key focus areas and concerns of the Province and briefed the Salesians of the important programmes for the year ahead, namely: The 13th National  BOSCOREE , a gathering of  Scouts and Guides from across India which will be held at the Don Bosco Campus, Nasik from 29th December to 3rd January 2019, The visit of the Rector Major in the month of March 2019 and the Provincial Chapter 2019. He thanked the Rectors who completed their term of office and welcomed the new Rectors as they took on new responsibilities to be Leaders in the various communities.  He stressed the need to be caring to our conferers and  to keep the charism of Don Bosco and the mission to serve the young with the heart of Christ.

Mr. Conrad Saldanha, Principal Advisor, Don Bosco College Learning, Kurla and Principal Researcher presented the  Survey findings of the Mumbai Province, as part of the All India Research Project related to the Re-visioning and Re-Signification of the Salesian Mission in Asia  The Survey was done in 2016/17 for the Salesian Provincial Conference of India (SPCSA).  

The Survey evaluated the Salesians' perceptions of themselves,  the perceptions of the collaborators like the Parents/Parishioners/Faculty/Staff of the Salesians and lastly the perceptions of the beneficiaries (Youth) of Salesians. The main areas covered were the Identity of the SDB, the focus on the youth, the services offered to them, and Formation.

In Mumbai a total of 777 respondents were covered comprising of 124 Salesians, 181 Parents and Parishioners, 278 Faculty and Staff, and 194 youth.  

Some of the key highlights of the findings pertaining to the Mumbai Province were the following :

a.   The Salesians need to increase their emphasis on the poorest of the poor youth.
b.   The beneficiaries feel that Salesians are providing quality education, holistic growth and that the Preventive system is good and is a differentiating factor of the Salesians.
c. There needs to be more emphasis on Community life. In fact Formation needs to emphasise Community more than just individual development.
d.   The gap between Formation and Mission needs to be reduced.
e.   The Salesians need to become more authentic God centred persons.
f.   There is a great need felt in giving guidance to the young in the use of social media.
g.    Accompaniment of the youth needs to increase.
h.   Salesians need to become collaborative empowerers.  
i.    The Salesians need to be transformational in their approach and not just incremental.
j.    The beneficiaries are much more positive in their perceptions of the Salesians than the Salesians are of themselves.

The findings were looked at in the context of the Letter of the Rector Major convoking the 28th General Chapter.

Father Manuel Murzello, Provincial Economer spoke about administrative and financial matters of the Province and recommended that the Salesians keep all the documents of their respective institutions up to date.   He congratulated Father Elson Baretto, Former Economer, for his initiative for commencing the process and obtaining the Property  card for the Don Bosco , Matunga property for perpetuity.

Father Joaquim Fernandes presented The 13th National BOSCOREE Fundrasing campaign and explained the offline and online digital campaign through the to raise funds to host the programme.

Father Savio Silvera briefed the gathering on the various animation programmes for the academic year and the need to better care for our younger Salesians.

The Theme of the 28th GENERAL CHAPTER- The title of the General Chapter will be: ''What kind of Salesians for the youth of today''? With this theme, we would like to study and deepen the following points: The profile of today's Salesian, and also of the Salesian of tomorrow, so that he will be able to offer the best possible answer to today's young people, especially the poorer and the ones most in need of help. Obviously it is a mission we do not carry on by ourselves, but a mission shared between Salesians and lay people.

Father Wyman Gonsalves, Moderator of the Provincial Chapter, Mumbai Province introduced the Provincial Chapter 2019 and attempted to understand the mind of the Salesian Superior General and his council. This was done through a PowerPoint presentation with direct quotes from Fr. Angel's letter convoking General Chapter 28.

The preparation process for Provincial Chapter 2019 was illustrated within a timeframe. The pre-Capitular commission consisting of Fathers Anthony Pinto, Bernard Fernandes, Lester Fernandes, Banzelao Tixeira and Brother Royston will facilitate the preparatory process.

Father Ajoy Fernandes, Director, Prafulta Psychological Services  introduced this group to the Myers-Briggs Type indicator - a very effective tool for self-understanding and getting insights into our personality types. Father Ajoy described the Myers-Briggs programme as a well accepted psychological tool used by top MNCs and corporates in their recruitment and assessment criteria.  Through a series of exercises and group sharing he lead the group to understanding personality types and styles of functioning.  The group actively participated in this Jungian exercise. The sessions were very appreciated.



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