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Indian Salesian Appointed Director of Radio Don Bosco, South Sudan

By Chris Valentino
Mumbai, Sep. 9. Indian Salesian Missionary to Sudan, Fr. Shyjan Chemmarappallil takes charge as Director-Radio Don Bosco 91FM in Tonj, South Sudan. Fr Shyjan took over from Nigerian Salesian Fr. Cyril Odia, on August 24, 2011. Radio Don Bosco 91FM, the only radio station for around 200 kms. is part of the Sudan Catholic Radio Network. Fr Shyjan spoke to BIS India in an exclusive.
Speaking of his background and initial formation as a Salesian of Don Bosco, Fr Shyjan said: ''I am from St. Mary's Parish, Mattara, Kannur (Kerala). Post- University Studies, I went to North-East India as a Jesus Youth Volunteer, in 1998. There I felt called to join the Salesians and asked to join the Salesian Province of Dimapur. Novitiate was in Imphal and my immediate post-novitiate was in Divyadaan-Nashik, Maharashtra. It was there that I volunteered my services as a Missionary to Africa. Thanks to the instrumentation of Fr. Anastasio Nygah and Fr George Chalissery, I managed to reach the Province of AFE in the newly constituted Sudan Delegation, in 2006.
Fr Shyjan says ''My immediate appointment as a newly ordained was Administrator and Assistant Pastor in Maridi, South Sudan. I thoroughly enjoyed the interesting and challenging experience of relating to the people, especially youth and children in the days of upheaval and turmoil.''
Prodded on for his views on Radio Don Bosco and his vision, Fr Shyjan says, ''Radio Don Bosco 91FM began broadcasting a year ago. As part of the Sudan Catholic Radio Network, we collaborate with six other Radio Stations. This is a very compelling apostolate, considering the present situation.'' He further reflected ''this is the time, a great opportunity for us to reach out to thousands of youth across the newly born country South Sudan.''
Radio Don Bosco 91FM with Fr Shyjan at its helm has launched YOUTH LINK whereby all the youth friendly programmes are brought under one umbrella. A weekly programme as-of-now, the vision is to make it more frequent with interactive sessions with Youth across the world.
As a parting request Fr Shyjan says ''We need prayers. We need support to put our hands, heads and hearts together to rebuild this nation in PEACE, building up the Kingdom of God.''

South Sudan - the newly carved country on the world map celebrates two months of its existence, officially coming into being on July 09, 2011. BIS India salutes the people, youth and Salesians labouring in South Sudan, especially Indian Salesians on a noble quest.



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