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Veteran Missionaries address Chapter Members


By Fr. Pulinthanath Joseph
Fr. Sylvanus Sngi addresses the Chapter Members of INS
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Shillong, May. 10. Fr. Sylvanus Sngi, senior missionary and scholar of Northeast India, and Archbishop emeritus Thomas Menamparampil of Guwahati urged fellow Salesians of Silchar province to be mystics, prophets and servants of the young in a radical manner. They were addressing the Chapter members during the Eucharistic celebrations on the second and third day of the Chapter respectively.
Quoting the example of St. Paul whose encounter with the divine changed his life radically, Fr. Sngi, the oldest Salesian of Silchar Province said that he wished his confreres had mystical experiences whose 'impact lasted a lifetime'.

Archbishop Menamparampil exhorted the Chapter members to be like Don Bosco whose mysticism consisted in the intensity of his encounter with the Lord rather than on the length of time he spent in prayer.

The Provincial, on behalf of the province, presented a memento of appreciation to Archbishop Menamparampil for his long years of service to the region as a Salesian and as a priest.

The First Chapter of Silchar Province is currently underway at Pastoral Centre, Shillong.

The discussions, divided between the theme of the General Chapter and the Concerns of the province were vigorous, fraternal and enlightening.

Discussions on the theme of the Chapter 'Witnessing to the radical approach of the Gospel' also included examining the vocation of the Salesian as mystics, prophets and servants of the young.

Besides the discussions held in the general assembly, much work was done in previously-formed groups. It gave members ample opportunity to participate in discussions.

The Chapter members displayed admirable degree of fraternal life both during the Chapter proceedings and also at other times. A strong desire for radical change characterized the entire Chapter.

At the invitation of the Chapter, Bro. Sunny Joseph of Dimapur province gave a presentation on the successful story of DB Tech skill training in Dimapur province to the Chapter members.

Issues related to skill training in the province of Silchar were discussed and the importance of enhancing the number and quality of skill training centres were emphasized.

The Chapter also set aside considerable amount of time for looking into the 'concerns of the province'. The concerns were listed, prioritized, discussed and voted upon.

Financial transparency at all levels of administration became a much-discussed issue of the Chapter. The Body was unanimous that the province should streamline administration and ensure greater financial transparency among confreres and institutions.

In this regard, it was said that the practice of poverty and financial and administrative matters would be the focus of the next provincial visitation of the houses.

An efficient secretariat, often working overtime, ensured that the day's proceedings were minutely documented and presented each morning in the form of minutes.
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