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GC27 animation in Guwahati Province

By Fr. Bivan Mukhim
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Guwahati, Jun. 18. On Saturday 14 June, 31 Salesian confreres of the province of Guwahati (Guwahati Region) gathered at Don Bosco Technical School, Maligaon for an animation on the recent concluded 27 General Chapter of the congregation. Fr. VM Thomas SDB, the provincial animated the session for the confreres. The opening prayer was led by the octogenarian priest Fr. Porcu Mario SDB.  
In the opening session Fr. Provincial presented the statistics of the Salesians in the world. From the light of the discussion various points were brought forth which included the great responsibilities that the Salesians in India have to play for the future of the congregation. Therefore, 'communities should prepare responsible leaders.'

Fr. Solomon Denis said that the quality of a leader in community is to prepare the successor or disciple for the future. The statement is in line with the thought of Fr. Provincial who requested the leaders of community to help young confreres to prepare themselves to take up future challenges. Fr. T. O Jose, Parish Priest of St. Joseph's co-cathedral in his deliberation suggested that 'numerical growth as well as the quality of the individual should be emphasized in the choice of vocation,' he said. An intervention from the vocation promoter Fr. Thadeus Kujur SDB rightly summed up the responsibility of every Salesians. He said, 'vocation is a mystery. All of us are vocation promoters and so we need to guide young people to identify their calling and motivate them.' Fr. Mario encouraged those present to 'choose boys from good environment and good family background.'

In the second hour of the discussion Fr. Provincial said that the expectation of the GC27 is visibility, credibility and fruitfulness. The discussion was in tune with the message of Pope Francis who recommended to the Salesian six mantras:

1. Need to prepare the young to work in society according to the spirit of the Gospel.
2. Strengthen the motto 'Da mihi animas, cetera tolle' with two other elements: work and temperance.
3. Every Salesian must be inspired by the poverty of Don Bosco and Mama Margaret in living an austere and transparent life.
4. Going out to marginalized youngsters with courage, maturity and much prayer.
5. To live in community and not as isolated individuals.
6. Care of vocations to be given utmost importance.

The Rapporteur of each community presented the results of their work after the group study. Fr. Provincial also introduced the final document of the General Chapter on the theme 'Witnesses to the Radical Approach of the Gospel' and asked the members present to discuss on the three important aspects of Mystics in the Spirit, Prophets of Fraternity and Servants of the Young. From the final document, each community is asked to take up various lines of actions to be practiced in communities during the coming years.

Fr. Lukose Cheruvalel SDB, the Director of Snehalaya presented the Child Protection Policy to the members. He implored all to give top priority to the implementation of the policy in communities.

Fr. Provincial concluded the session by recommending all communities to read the final document of the General Chapter during the spiritual reading and evaluate the community based on the document. Earlier, the Don Bosco Maligaon students performed various items to welcome the provincial and the confreres.
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