Elias Dias sdb
MUMBAI, JANUARY 18, 2011: The annual Salesian Family Day of Mumbai Province was held on January 16, 2011 at Our Lady of Dolorus Church, Wadala from 11am to 4pm. This year we made a change in the time table for the benefit of the out stationed members of the Salesian Family. Hundred and eighty seven members of the different branches of the family participated in the Family Day.
At the outset of the programme Rev. Fr. Elias Dias welcomed Rev Fr. Provincial Fr. Michael Fernandes for the concelebrated Mass. He thanked the Parish Priest and units of cooperators and Past pupils for organizing this programme. He also thank all the members specially those who came from outside Mumbai for their love, enthusiasm and sacrifice.

Fr. Michael Fernandes concelebrated the Holy Eucharist with other priests. In his homily he highlighted the strenna of 2011 Come and See. The call of Jesus is extended to all so that we may be active members in the mission of Jesus. Evangelization and vocation are two inseparable aspects of the strenna. All evangelized are called to become disciples of Jesus. Fr. Provincial drew our attention towards the specific call of the disciples who are called to share experience with others. In his pedagogical direction Fr. Provincial asked the members of the Salesian Family to appreciate their vocation and ask others to come and see the Salesian way of life.
After the Mass the strenna of the Rector Major 2011 was projected in the A.V. Hall. Last year the strenna was “Sir, we want to see Jesus” This year Fr. Chaves makes a heartfelt appeal to the whole Salesian Family to feel the need for vocation ministry. He calls us to feel more strongly than ever the challenges of creating a vocational culture in every setting such that that young people may discover life as a call and all the Salesian Ministry may be truly vocational. Another fundamental element in vocation ministry is a regular personal accompaniment of the young person.
Fr. Wilfred D Souza presented the Pilgrimage of the Casket. This will be an occasion to take up once again in our heads the life of Don Bosco as desired by the Rector Major. The Worldwide Salesian Family will come to pray, before the casket forming a community of faith called by Christ to holiness. A family which desires to sanctify itself following the example of Don Bosco.
This pilgrimage through hundred and twenty countries will conclude in time for the second centenary of the birth of St. John Bosco. The relics of Don Bosco will be in our Province from August 4 to August 16, 2011. It is hoped that the entire event will help our people and us to love, to study, to imitate, to pray and make Don Bosco known.
The presentations were followed by a few entertainment items. Units of Cooperators from Wadala and Borivli entertained the members with their song and dance. Fr. Vincent Rasquinha blessed the food. It was followed by a sort housie game. Fr. Elson Barretto spoke on Don Bosco Development Society. DBDS is a network of partner organizations working across the states of Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan with tribal, rural and urban communities. Their major areas of work are 1. Agricultural and Ecological Department. 2. Promotion of People’ Rights and Good Governance. 3. Skill Developments and Livelihood Promotion 4. Universal Education and 5. Child Protection and Child Rights.

Fr. Ajoy Fernandes developed the concept on MORD and the Youth Ministry. Youth Ministry does the work by imparting SYS training to all in our formation houses and we have well defined project for them. In our parishes we have given a great boost to Altar Servers and a youth movements. We are hoping that through this more involved methodology we will also be able to inspire and motivate boys to join us. Thus youth and vocation ministry are tied together
Fr. Brian Moras spoke on Vocation Ministry and Vocation Guidance which aim at enabling the young person to understand what God wants him to do. Vocation Ministry also focuses on helping young people to understand if God is really calling them to the Priesthood or Religious Life.
Fr. Joaquim Fernandes dealt with the communication aspect in our Province. He said that the Tej- Prasarini is involved disseminating information. To give pastoral formation and finally engaged in production. He said that SPCSA is intending to bring out a movie on Don Bosco.

Sr. Phyllis Fernandes raised the vote of thanks, thus came the end of Salesian Family Day 2011.