Rickson Fernandes sdb
LONAVLA, NOVEMBER 30, 2009: The Cooperators of the Don Bosco, Lonavla Unit had a unique gathering on the evening of November 28, 2009 to commemorate the 150th year of the congregation.

The programme began with the Eucharistic Celebration presided over by Fr. Thomas D’Costa, the Delegate of the Cooperators. In his homily he spoke of the origin of the Cooperators started by Don Bosco and their needs. Later the aspirants along with the Fathers and Brothers organized Fete Games for the Cooperators and their families. The day ended with a fellowship meal. The programme was fruitful as many members of the families expressed their intention to join the Cooperators unit.


Claudina Pinto
PUNE, NOVEMBER 19, 2009: The second seminar on the Common Identity Card and Common Mission Statement of the Salesian family was held at Don Bosco Youth Centre, Koregaon Park, Pune on November 15, 2009 for the benefit of the members of Salesian Family of Madhya Maharashtra. 65 members of the Salesian Family attended the meeting.

Mrs. Rosy Fernandes welcomed the gathering. Fr. Elias Dias lit the lamp and conducted the prayer service. He then explained the concept of Salesian family. He said that if you really want to know the meaning of Salesian family you have to study the two documents: Common Identity Card and Common Mission of the Salesian family.

Fr. Valerian Pereira spoke in Hindi on Common Identity Card. He highlighted that the grace of communion in the Salesian family is founded on the belief that through the initiative of God and the maternal assistance of the Blessed Mother Don Bosco gave rise to an original, evangelical experience. He spelt out the characteristics traits of the Salesian spirit and what was necessary for the formation of an active fraternity. He urged all to be proud and enthused by the charismatic identity of their own family and called for collaborative ventures in order to reach out to the young in the spirit of Don Bosco.

The document Common Mission Statement of the Salesian family was dealt upon by Fr. Wilfred D’souza. He explained all the articles of the document and focused on the various aspects of the Common Mission. Fr. Bento D’souza displayed a 10 minutes movie on Community Radio. He explained to the members the meaning of it and have its venture in their neighbourhood. The provincial coordinator Mrs. Claudina Pinto put forward the resolution of Chennai Congress of the Co-operators. She told them in order to return to Don Bosco we must know more about Don Bosco. Fr. Elias Dias presided over the con celebrated mass. Mr. Isudas Parmar, from Gujarat proposed the vote of thanks. He thanked the organizers, speakers and the host unit of the Co-operators for their fine hospitality.


Ketan Gala
SHILLONG, NOVEMBER 17, 2009: The National Federation Council meeting of the Don Bosco Alumni, India was held at Bakdil Training Centre, Tura, Meghalaya- Assam from November 9-11, 2009. Mr. Edward Pinto, Mr. Kailash Parekh, Mr. Ketan Gala and Fr. Elias Dias from Mumbai province attended the meeting.

This year the Archdiocese of Shillong is celebrating its platinum jubilee. On this occasion Rector Major Pascoal Chavez visited Guwahati province. Addressing the National Federation Council of the Alumni he said that there are four types of Past Pupils. He explained that it was not on the social, religious, cultural, educational basis. In fact not all the past pupils are on the same level. The first group is those who consider being a past pupil just be default. It happened by chance. For them it is just a memory, nothing more. The second group is those who consider their passing through a Salesian institution a blessing. They consider the Salesian education they received as a moment in which they learnt to be grateful and feel affection towards Don Bosco. The third group is those who consider it not only a blessing but consider being a past pupil a commitment. Hence they feel the need to re- associate themselves with the Salesians. They are willing to commit themselves to this way of life in their social life and they are ready to be present in politics and ready to work for the welfare of all. The fourth group of the past pupils is those who consider a life lived in Don Bosco’s way is a project of life in their family, society, politics and media. Rector major encouraged the past pupils to give the best to those who receive the least.

The inaugural ceremony was held in Don Bosco school complex in Tura. The Provincial delegate of Guwahati Fr. Januarius Sangma welcomed the guests and wished them a pleasant stay in Tura. Fr. K.J. Louis, the national delegate of the past pupil, in his speech said, “The past pupil should fill the whole world with Don Bosco. The chief guest P. A. Sangma, MLA of Tura and an ex- student of Don Bosco welcomed the gathering and said that Don Bosco like Mahatma Gandhi is not a past reality but a reality of the future and the past pupils must work on this.

The first session, the minutes and accounts of the last years meeting were read and passed. Fr. K. J. Louis dealt with world statutes and found some discrepancies’ in its formulation. So the assembly asked him to write a letter and clarify the points. 2011 is the centenary of the Past Pupil Association. In this connection they discussed the world congress in Rome in October and the National Congress in the month of December 2011.
The Council visited Nokrek Biospehere Reserve, Horti Hub Rongram and Fr. George Stadler memorial school, Darenggiri and financed by the past pupil of Tura. The closing ceremony was held at Don Bosco School, Tura. The local beat group entertained the guests. Mr. Edward Pinto proposed the vote of thanks.

SALFAM - News Bulletin 2


Claudina Pinto

MUMBAI, OCTOBER 23, 2009: The annual retreat of the Salesian cooperators of Don Bosco Mumbai was held at Vinalaya, Andheri on October 19-20, 2009.

Fr. Isaac Arackaparambil sdb, Director of Amrut Dhara, Gujarat animated the retreat. The retreat began with a welcome address by Fr. Elias Dias, Salesian family delegate of Mumbai province. He welcomed all the cooperators and Fr. Isaac. He especially thanked Fr. Isaac for his availability in spite of the sad demise of his dad last week.

The theme of the retreat was ‘The Discipleship of Our Lady’. The catholic laity faces a lot of flack from other Christian denominations for the importance they give to Our Lady in their prayers and devotion. With a view of affirming their affection for our Blessed Mother and to put to rest their apprehension created by the assaults posed by anti Marian protagonists, Fr. Isaac chose this topic. He based his talks on the book “Quiet Places with Mary” by Rev. Isaias Powers. The purpose was to help the cooperator to develop their relationship with Mary as a model and a partner in their prayer life. The themes portrayed Mary involved in similar situations that cause contemporary Christians pain and stress. Mary’s imaged responses help today’s adult to discover peaceful solutions to heal those in pain and provide practical approaches and ease their stress. Applying the insights of Fr. Powers, Fr. Isaac engaged the retreat- ants in linking their experiences with those of the mother of God in simple, yet practical ways by providing Gospel words and settings to our daily problems, frustrations and hopes. It is consoling to realize quietly that Mary faced the same round of questions. It is strengthening when our questions turn into quiet moments of prayer in the presence of Jesus.

The retreat concluded with the Vote of thanks proposed by Claudina Pinto, Provincial Coordinator. She thanked the preacher for his excellent and practical insights that he shared with the group. She also thanked Fr. Elias for organizing the retreat. It was a very rich experience for the cooperators to know so much more about our Blessed Mother.

SALFAM - Projects of Apostolic Life (Part 2 ) - Regulations

SALFAM - Projects of Apostolic Life (Part 1 ) - Statutes

Past Pupils - Statutes (Part 3)

Past Pupils - Statutes (Part 2)

Past Pupils - Statutes (Part 1)


Natasha Almeida
THE ASSOCIATION OF MARY HELP OF CHRISTIANS (ADMA) was launched on Tuesday, September 8, 2009, at the A.V Hall at the Provincial House, Matunga. The feast day of the Nativity of our Blessed Mother was chosen for this first gathering. The meeting was led by Fr. Wilfred D’souza and Fr. Elias Dias.
Fr. Wilfred in his opening address welcomed the participants and said that as members of ADMA they now become a part of the Salesian Family. The meeting planned to focus mainly on two aspects: what ADMA entails as an association and a look at the Marian feasts in the month of September.
Fr. Elias, the Provincial Delegate of the Salesian Family taking the podium mentioned that starting off ADMA in Mumbai was his dream. “Devotion to Mary Help of Christians and to the Blessed Sacrament is a gift. If we do not make use of these gifts it is useless,” he added. He also made a mention of the up coming programs for the month of October and November for the Salesian Family.
For the benefit of the members Fr. Wilfred explained the origin of the Association and what the Association aims at. Very briefly he explained the nature, goals and the commitments of ADMA. In the second half of the meeting Fr. Wilfred discussed the various Marian feasts in the month of September. The enthusiastic house came up with various suggestions of carrying out the membership of the Association on a day to day basis. Similarly, a very brief sharing and question and answer session got the members involved. The 23 members who attended the first meeting have set the sails going for the ADMA in Mumbai.
The association will meet on the first Saturday of every month at 5.30pm.


Chris Valentino sdb
The Salesian Family of the Mumbai Province celebrated a day of recollection at Auxilium, Pali Hill, Bandra-Mumbai on Sunday, September 6, 2009. At a day dedicated to the theme “My Commitment Today” the Family members gathered in large number, 97 to be precise - to pray, reflect, commit and renew their vocation. They came, they stayed and they went back rejuvenated.

The day began with ‘nashta’ and thereafter proceeded to heavier things as Sr. Teresa Joseph, a renowned speaker, writer and animator-trainer addressed the members with an inspiring power-point programme. She had the members glued to every word she uttered on Don Bosco’s Charism, the joy of belonging to the Salesian family, the Rector Major as the centre of the unity, pastoral charity, Da Mihi Animas, and the key elements of the Preventive System. She said “we are all called to work for the common mission… making the gift of our Charism to the Church and to society and by asking ourselves: What is Don Bosco asking me to do today?”

Later Sr. Phyllis with great experience and acumen expressed her views on what the word “commitment” entailed for us all. In a talk peppered with apt humour and genuine reflection she expounded in a very lucid manner the importance of commitment and what it means to us today, as members of the Salesian Family.

The family then celebrated a well-animated Eucharist, presided over by Fr. Christopher. Speaking during the homily, Fr Christopher dwelt on the Salesian Family as a Movement and drew examples from ordinary life to explain how ours is a movement with a difference. He stressed: “in order to commit ourselves to the mission and dream of Don Bosco we need to know ourselves better, form ourselves together and then work together in peace and harmony.”

Fr. Elias Dias, the Provincial Delegate of the Salesian Family thanked the FMA Sisters of Pali Hill for hosting and animating this recollection pilgrimage, Fr. Christopher for celebrating the Holy Eucharist and his homily and all the members of the Salesian Family present for the occasion, for their love and sacrifice.

After lunch all the members of the Salesian Family walked to Mont Mary’s Basilica singing hymns and reciting the Holy Rosary. In the Basilica they held a short prayer service and then dispersed back to their own hearths with a heart filled with Don Bosco and our Blessed Mother!


Chris Valentino sdb
MUMBAI, AUGUST 17, 2009:
Boscowadi at Uttan-Gorai was converted into a hotspot on Sunday, August 16, 2009 as a 90-strong contingent of the Salesian Family descended on the quiet little camp house to celebrate their first-of-a-kind picnic, commemorating the Birth Anniversary of Don Bosco. It was a spirited potpourri of Co-operators, Past-Pupils, Volunteers, FMAs and Salesians, in varied hues, shapes, ages and from different walks of life, including Fr Michael Fernandes, the Salesian Provincial of Mumbai.
Hitting the tarmac simultaneously, from Matunga and Andheri at 7:00 a.m. and filling up as the journey progressed, the huge buses wound their way into the hinterland of the Mumbai outskirts amidst oohs and aahs, meandering along the refreshingly green and cool foliage before coming to a halt at the intended hotspot. Breakfast was the starting fare, followed by the Eucharistic Meal presided over by Fr Michael Fernandes. Celebrating the occasion, Fr Michael invited the picnickers to become “bread for our brothers and sisters in imitation our Saviour and model Jesus Christ, the bread of life.”

It was then a dash to the roaring sea, which however wasn’t too inviting thanks to the litter and the oil slick… but the enterprising picnickers continued with their fun, frolicking and collecting shells along the shore. It was singing, chatting, mingling around with “old and newer siblings”… a quintessentially picnicky feeling with crooning away, belting out of golden oldies, spontaneous dances, choruses, games, regaling each other with the memories of the ‘good old days’ and a general familial ambient both indoors and out on the refreshingly spirited waterfront.

The mood of the day was a passionate mixture of nostalgia, recollectedness, friendly banter, flirty swings and even enterprisingly futuristic planning. The sumptuous platter served up in the noon, only added to the camaraderie. Later in the evening, the ‘Housie’ with animated gusto and punching of numbers gave the siblings an opportunity to engage in a cheerful duel, culminating in the munching of biscuits and sipping of the ever tasty chai. Others of a more pious and divine orientation walked up the stairs to the Shrine atop Bhatte-Bundar, for a darshan. Some others who couldn’t resist the temptation to stay away from the inviting waves of the sea darted down the beach and in to the ‘not-so-clean’ waters anyway, just to get the thrill-feel. Just a little before sun-down the festival party clambered into the house-on-wheels, heading back to husband, wife, children grandchildren and the daily routine of life.

It was a coup of sorts with the entire Family coming together for this venture of togetherness and party-time. It was even more appropriate that this was on the Birth Anniversary of our Father and Founder. Some of the members opined “It is so nice … I feel at home… It would be nice to meet up more often like this… Wow… this is great… Thanks to Fr Elias….” etc, etc, etc. The Salesian Confreres of Don Bosco Matunga, Dominic Savio Andheri and Bosco Boys were specially thanked, appreciated and prayed for, for having made this adventure possible. Perhaps the only dampener was… the scorching heat with water, water everywhere, not a drop that fell… and yet the family’s day was made…!!

First VDB Aspirants for the Mumbai Province

In a simple yet touching ceremony of Prayer and reflection, two youngsters were initiated to the VDB movement by Fr. Michael Fernandes, Provincial on May 30, 2009. Also present for the ceremony was Fr Wilfred D’souza. It was truly a historic day for the VDB Presence in Mumbai. Through a power point presentation Fr. Michael explained their identity, secularity, consecration and Saleisianity. There are so many ways of being “Salesian”, myriad ways of being inspired by the example of Don Bosco. We see how two people are looking for an alternative way of following a “vocation”. The words used can be confusing.

A “Volunteer of Don Bosco” (VDB) is a permanent commitment not to be confused with the many young people who generously work as Salesian volunteers before they begin their careers in life. The Volunteers of Don Bosco is a Secular Institute for women. It was founded in Turin in 1917 by the young women who attended the Salesian Sisters Oratory at Valdocco. Today, there are approximately 1,500 women who are members of the Volunteers of Don Bosco. In India we have only 9 VDB’s. They live the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, but, unlike members of a religious institute, live out their consecration in the world. They do not live in a community and do not wear any indentifying clothing or insignia. They live out their Salesian vocation within the context of daily life and undertake professional activities according to their interests, abilities and training. It is their vocation and mission to bring the message of Jesus to whatever work or life context they encounter. They work in offices, factories, schools, hospitals and many other work places.


Edgar Mascarenhas
MUMBAI, JULY 21, 2009:
The Annual General Meeting of the Mumbai Provincial Federation of Don Bosco Past Pupils was held at Audio Visual Hall of the Provincial House on July 19, 2009, at 6.30 pm. The meeting began with a prayer service conducted by Don Bosco – Kurla Unit, comprising of a bhajan, the past pupils prayer and a soothing audio visual song- Make us an instrument of peace.
Thereafter the Chief Guest, Vice Provincial - Rev Fr. Ajoy Fernandes, Past Pupils Provincial Delegate- Fr. Elias Dias, Fr. Wilfred D’souza and Sr. Santanna were welcomed with floral tributes.
The secretary of the Mumbai Provincial Federation, Mr. Kailash Parekh read the annual report which spelt out the various activities undertaken by the Mumbai Federation during the period April 2008- July 2009. The Annual reports of each unit were read by the individual unit secretaries in detail.
Sister Santanna in her address informed the members that this year was dedicated to the Salesian Family. Requesting the past pupils to spread the Salesian ways of Cheerfulness and Honesty, she called for a closer working environment between the SDB and the FMA past pupils, where common activities could be undertaken. She thanked the Past pupils for inviting the FMA for the AGM and in turn invited the past pupils for THE FMA’s AGM to be held at Panjim- Goa on August 31, 2009. The Treasurer, Mr. Joseph, read the statement of accounts of Mumbai Provincial Federation for the period of April 1, 2008 to March 31, 2009. The Chief Guest Rev Fr. Ajoy commended the past pupils for the various activities undertaken by them. He summarized the contents of the reports of the various units as under:
a) The past pupils reflected tremendous love for Don Bosco.
b) A systematic connection of the association from unit, to province, to national to international levels.
c) The feeling of joy to be with each other.
d) Believing in the growth of individuals and the unit through retreats, recollections and leadership camps.
e) Out reach programmes organized within the school and the world outside.
f) Different levels in the units, the seniors, the juniors and the fresher have yet to be connected.
g) Organizing capabilities of the various units, be it sports or academic competitions.
The Provincial delegate, Fr. Elias Dias in his concluding address informed the members of the forth coming events to be undertaken by the Provincial Federation and requested a healthy participation from all the units. He praised the past pupils for the activities undertaken but also mentioned that the work done was going unnoticed. He therefore requested all the units to put up their activities on BIS or SALFAM. This would in turn help to enlighten many people who are not aware of the past pupils movement and their involvement in promoting the Salesian spirit. Fr. Elias also brought out the issue of publishing a directory of the past pupils in the SALFAM issue of January. He thanked the president Mr. Ketan Gala for his support in rejuvenating the federation. He also appreciated the work done by Mr. Joseph, who worked behind the scenes as the treasurer. He also thanked Mr. Amar and Mr. Dilip Bhatt for their contribution for a smooth running at the province level.
Finally the president concluded the meeting by proposing the Vote of Thanks. Mr. Ketan extended his sincere gratitude to the Vice Provincial, the Provincial Delegate Fr. Elias, Fr. Wilfred, Sr. Santanna , all the office bearers and all the members especially to the two members from Nashik who were present for the AGM. The meeting saw an attendance of 43 members. All the members departed after a sumptuous dinner.


Elias Diaz sdb

When Don Bosco was just a mere lad he was shown in a prophetic dream what his life’s mission would be. A ‘beautiful woman bedecked with stars’ put her hand on his shoulder and stretching out the other said, “Look, this is your field of work”. It was a huge ‘field of work’ and right from the beginning Don Bosco understood that it was not a task he would be able to fulfill alone – the task of turning street urchins into good citizens.

Don Bosco was ordained a priest on June 5, 1841, and in the same year on December 8, he began his work. As years rolled by, thousands of boys flocked to him. To take care of them he looked for helpers and collaborators. He gathered all types of people: rich and poor, young and old, married and unmarried, interns and externs. He called them Salesians. In 1859, he founded the Salesian Congregation to look after these poor boys. In 1874, the Constitution of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians was approved and they worked for the girls under the leadership of Mary Domenica Mazarello. In 1876, he set up a pious union of Salesian Co-operators, a lay association to collaborate with him in his mission. Thus we see in the life of Don Bosco that he gathered religious men, women and lay people to fulfill his mission.

Today Salesian Family refers to an assembly of groups, institutes and association that share Don Boscos charism, spirituality and mission towards the young. These units were either founded directly by Don Bosco or developed after his death by his followers. These groups strive to better the social world like Don Bosco who was concerned with the temporal and spiritual salvation of the youth and the working classes. These groups are means to fulfill the mission of Don Bosco. Today there are 27 groups the world over under the umbrella of the Salesian Family.

The Salesians came to Mumbai in 1928 under the leadership of Fr. Joseph Hauber. On January 31, 1972 Mumbai was officially erected as a Province after the separation of Konkan Province. Mumbai province comprises of states of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. There are 6 branches of Salesian Family working in the province of Mumbai. There are 205 Salesians of Don Bosco working in 26 Presences. 201 Daughters of Mary Help of Christians working in 32 houses. 7 SMI Sisters working in 2 Presences. The association of the Salesian Cooperators that started in 1974 have 16 centers and 154 active members. The Provincial Federation of the Past Pupils of Don Bosco which was established in 1968 under the leadership of Fr. Alfred Mariotta has 1636 life members in 9 centers. The Past Pupils of Daughters of Mary Help of Christians are enthusiastic about their membership in the Salesian Family. There are 2 Volunteers of Don Bosco who are under formation. 3 brothers ‘The Disciples’ founded by Fr. Joe D’souza working in our institute in Gujarat.

In the past we worked separately for the Cooperators and the past pupils except on the occasion of the Salesian Family day. On this day we have Holy Eucharist, variety entertainment and fellowship dinner in common.

The Co-operators have their AGM, pilgrimage at Mount Mary, Bandra in the month of September, annual retreat, outreach programs to any destitute home and Lenten recollection in the month of April. During summer vacation sometimes picnics are organized. This April they attended the South Asian Congress of the Salesian Co-operators in Chennai.

The Provincial Federation of the Past Pupils of Don Bosco had an animation programme at a provincial level. They had their AGM during which elections were held. A leadership seminar organized by them at Kurla and ‘A day with God’ held at Andheri on March 22, 2009. In the month of December, 2008 the past pupils attended 9th Asia-Australia Congress held in Philippines.

This year being the year of the Salesian Family the Salesian Commission is at its large. It has got 11 members representing all the branches working in the province of Mumbai. Special Salesian Family meeting held on March 15, 2009 decided to have some common venture for the Salesian Family. They decided to have two days seminar on identity and common mission on Salesian Family on July 4 and 5 in 2009 and repeat it again in the month of November for the benefit of others who did not take part in the first meet. Aug 9 is scheduled as a picnic day for the entire Salesian Family. It will be organized by the past pupils. The month of September, recollection cum walking pilgrimage of all Salesian familia will be held in Bandra. On December 18 the whole Salesian Family of Mumbai province will renew their vows or promises. On January 17, 2010 the Salesian Family day will be celebrated at Kurla. Besides all these programs each branch will have their own programs at their own centers.

Today the Salesian Family is considered a vast movement that works with Don Bosco in his mission. It must grow numerically and spiritually. It must grow numerically because of the vast field of apostolate in need of collaborators. It must grow spiritually because Don Bosco has started his family for the salvation of souls. No one can give unless one has it. The members of the family should have spiritual life in order to spiritualize the world. Therefore, the spiritual programs and animation programs are very necessary in the Salesian Family. We must make an effort to grow – to revive the dormant units and start new units in all our institutions. Each branch of the Salesian Family has a responsibility to help the others to increase and grow. We have to increase the number of the Cooperators, past pupils, volunteers of Don Bosco and start a new branch of Salesian Family ADMA- devout clients for Mary Help of Christians. It is a branch which Don Bosco himself started at the completion of his Basilica of Mary Help of Christians in Turin in 1868. We have ample opportunities and facilities to launch this project in our province. What we need is a bit of good will and enthusiasm in the movement.

The Salesian Family is a vibrant reality. To keep it alive we the Salesian Family has to change our mentality. We need to shift our emphasis for excessive autonomy to synergy of a vast movement of persons. We need to underline not the autonomy of the individual groups but the synergy of the whole family. We have to stress on the culture of communion rather than individualism. This change of mentality must start with Salesians.


NASHIK, JULY 16, 2009: The Past Pupils of Don Bosco, Nashik under the guidance of Rev. Fr. Diego Nunes organized an inter house GK quiz on July 8, 2009. Consisting of two groups namely std V – VII and Std VIII – X, the quiz in all had nine rounds on the fields of Literature, Sports, Politics, History, Bollywood, Mathematics, Spellings etc., ensuring all round knowledge of the young participants. In the junior section, Savio House won the quiz and the in senior section it was the Bosco House which took the honors. The chief guest Mr. Ketan Gala, Provincial President of Don Bosco Alumni in his address said education is imparted not only in classrooms but also by such activities. He congratulated the Past Pupils and the Principal Fr. Diego Nunes for organizing this programme and reviving the Past Pupils Unit. The guest of honor Mr. Remeth Fernandes, President of the Andheri Unit also commended the efforts of the Past Pupils. The prizes were given by the Rector Fr. Ivo Coelho. The event was followed by a meeting of the Past Pupils and the Provincial President , wherein they were guided as how to become life members of the federation and how to ensure further growth of their Unit.

SALFAM - Common Mission Statement

The Salesian Family - Mumbai Province


Chris Valentino sdb MUMBAI, JULY 6, 2007: It was one big gathering of enthused family members at Don Bosco Provincial House, Mumbai, when eighty-seven people belonging to the Salesian Family assembled for the “Seminar on Common Identity Card and Common Mission Statement of the Salesian Family.” The gathering had representatives from the Salesians, Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Salesian Co-operators, Past Pupils, Volunteers of Don Bosco and Sisters of Mary Immaculate along with their unit delegates.The seminar commenced with an audio-visual prayer moment animated by the very resourceful Fr. Glenn Lowe. This was followed by the official welcome to all the participants by Fr. Michael Fernandes, Provincial of the Mumbai Province. In his address Fr. Michael said, “All of us belong to one family… this is our family… hence we must feel open and welcome to come together, work together for the development of the society, especially the welfare of youngsters.” He invited the participants to a day of fruitful and reflective workshop on the need to think, act and be one family as Don Bosco envisioned his society to be.Fr. Elias Diaz then presented the historical perspective of the development of the Salesian Family from its inception by Don Bosco till date, with a well developed Power Point show.The first part of the seminar, “Common Identity Card of the Salesian Family’ was then spelt out with great lucidity and vivacity by Fr. Valerian Pereira, Professor of Salesianity at Divyadaan, Salesian Institute of Philosophy, Nashik. In his exposition Fr. Valerian said, “Don Bosco’s vision and life were shaped by the initial experiences he had as a youngster… he later wished to be a friend and father to the poor and the deprived… and thus began a movement of persons who would be his collaborators in his expedition to create good and honest, upright citizens. We all belong to this family of Don Bosco, drawing inspiration from him, and this is what he gives us our common identity…”The afternoon session was geared to the part of the seminar; ‘Common Mission Statement of the Salesian Family’ dwelt upon by Fr. Wifred D’Souza. He focused on the various aspects of the mission entrusted to the Salesian Family as a unit. He explained all the articles of the document.It was one big memorable family affair with great camaraderie, joviality and enthusiasm as the members interacted with each other and partook of the delicious goodies laid out at table. The Delegate for the Salesian Family, Fr. Elias Diaz, remarked with great joy… “I didn’t expect so many to turn up… they have overshot my estimation by over thirty-five…” He thanked Fr. Provincial for his encouragement and enthusiasm, the Provincial House community and especially Fr. Bernard their hospitality. He also thanked the speakers and all the member of the Salesian Family for their participation despite the heavy rains.


Claudina Pinto MUMBAI, JUNE 29, 2009: The Annual General Body Meeting of the Salesian Cooperators of the Mumbai Province was held on June 28, 2009 in the AV hall at the Provincial House, Mumbai.

53 Cooperators from all over Mumbai were present for the same. The meeting started with a con-celebrated mass. The main celebrant was Reverend Fr. Provincial Michael Fernandes. In his homily he spoke on laity and their rightful place and functions in the church. He mentioned that there are two states in the church: Clerical state and Lay state. Further he explained these states. They have fundamental equality but functional inequality. We can see in the church as Pyramidical Structure or Collaborative Structure. In the Collaborative Structure there is lot of scope for the Laity in the Church. He encouraged the co operators to collaborate in the activities of the church.

After the mass Fr. Eliaz Dias in his power point presentation explained the identity of the cooperators, their history and the different activities of the co operatives in the province of Mumbai.

Minutes of the previous AGM and the activities of the co operators were read out by Mrs. Philomena Mendes. Mr. Christopher Gomes read out the statement of accounts for the year 2008-09. With some clarifications the accounts were passed.

Fr. Eliaz Dias appraised the co operators about the forth coming activities in the province which would include seminars, recollections, picnics, retreats, out reach programmes and joint meetings of the Salesian Family. He invited the co operators to take active part in the programmes organized for the Salesian Family this year.

Mrs. Claudina Pinto proposed the Vote of Thanks. She thanked Fr. Provincial for celebrating mass, Fr. Dias and Sr. Phyllis Fernandes fma, for their encouragement and all the co operators for their presence. The meeting ended at 7. 30 p.m.


1) 25th June 2009 – Salesian Family Commission Meeting
2) 28th June 2009 – AGM for Cooperators
3) 4th & 5th July 2009 – Seminar on Common Identity Card of the Salesian Family and
Common Mission Statement of the Salesian Family
4) 19th July 2009 – AGM for Past Pupils
5) 9th August 2009 – Picnic for the Salesian Family
6) 6th September 2009 – Recollection at Pali Hill for the Salesian Family
7) 18th October 2009 – Retreat for Cooperators
8) 1st November 2009 – Get together for the parents of the Salesians
9) 2nd November 2009 – Commemoration of Holy Souls at Sewri Cemetry
10) 14th & 15th November 2009 – Seminar on Common Identity Card of the Salesian Family
and Common Mission Statement of the Salesian Family and Joint Meeting of the
Salesian Family
11) 3rd December 2009 – Feast of St. Francis Xavier – Province Feast
12) 18th December 2009 – Renewals of Vows of the Salesian Family
13) 17th January 2010 – Salesian Family Day.
14) 21st February 2010 - Outreach programme for the Cooperators
15) 28th February 2010 - Outreach programme for the Past Pupils
16) 21st March 2010 - Day with God for the Past Pupils


Dear Members of the Salesian Family,
There was an advertisement in the newspaper inviting people forthe post of Assistant Manager in a firm. Many applied but in thefinal interview only four were chosen. The Manager gave them atest to transfer boxes from one room to another. The first one cameand said he had applied for the post of Assistant Manager and notto transfer boxes, so he left the job. The second one tried his bestbut he could not finish the work. The third one hired people but theyalso did not finish the work. Finally, the fourth one asked theManager to give him help. “What help do you need?” asked theManager. He said, “I need 50 men to work on this job”. TheManager gave him 50 men and he finished the job and he wasselected for the post of Assistant Manager.Johnny Bosco at the age of 9 had a dream which made a deep impression on his life. He saw aplayground full of street children. They were fighting, swearing and using abusive language. Amajestic person told him to put order. “But how can I?”, asked Johnny. “I am a poor boy ofBecchi. I need help”. The majestic person gave him his own mother. Our Blessed Mother puther hand on his shoulder and taught him how to go about his mission.In 1841, Don Bosco began his work in a little chapel of St. Francis of Assisi at ConvittoEcclesiastico. By 1865 he had all types of people helping him in his mission. Some wereinterns and some externs. He called them his family.What is a Salesian Family? Salesian Family refers to an Assembly of Groups, Institutions andAssociations that share Don Bosco's charism, spirituality and mission towards the young.These units were either founded directly by Don Bosco or developed after his death. Thesegroups strive to better the social world like Don Bosco who was concerned with the temporaland spiritual salvation of humanity especially its youth and working classes. These groupsmake a closely knit vast movement in the society. They have common identity card andcommon mission statement.Salfam is a link that unites all the members of the Salesian Family. The purpose of thispublication is to create a fresh communication, to foster a wider knowledge of the variousbranches of the Salesian Family and thus to enthuse apostolic involvement and collaborationin the Salesian mission. It brings to us relevant Salesian events; confront us with heroic boldSalesian ventures in the Salesian Family of the Bombay Province to work together towardsbuilding the new kingdom proclaimed by Jesus Christ.
With love and prayers,
Yours in Don Bosco
Fr. Elias Diaz
Delegate for the Salesian Family


Dear Members of the Salesian Family,
The Salfam magazine is back in your hands! Congrats to Fr. Elias Diaz and his team of helpers. At one of our meetings a collective decision was taken to revive it. It is a need to know
more about each other and the happenings in each unit. Now it is your duty to keep the magazine going with contributions by way of articles and news items. This year we are also revamping the Salesian Family office at the provincial house. I have assigned Fr. Wilfred D'Souza to assist Fr. Diaz. The Salesian Family Council has been enlarged and they are going to give us more direction in our works. They have planned some common meetings and activities. So it is going to be fun meeting, learning and working together. I am also happy to note that there is growth in some of the units. There are new members and younger ones too. Kudos to those who have worked towards this growth. Two young ladies have come forward and want to be enrolled as Volunteers of Don Bosco. So this is another branch of our family, which we have not had in our province so far. I am happy to welcome them to the Salesian Family. Many of our units and family members are doing a lot of good work. But most of these are not known to the others. At times we work in our own units or settings and do not have a common project to sponsor. Hence this year we have taken Project Karjat. We are starting a new institution for Street Kids and will need a number of household items. The Fathers from Karjat will prepare a list and accordingly you can make contributions from your units for this project. I wish you the very best in this year and let us keep the Salesian Family flag flying high always. Let us learn from each other, support one another, work together and grow together into one big Salesian family.
Yours affectionately,
Fr. Michael Fernandes, sdb

SALFAM - News Bulletin 1