EAO provincials 2018 - Day 3,
Dedicated to the exploration of Timor
Dili, Timor Leste, 8 March 2018 -- Every year the EAO provincials come together in a different province. Every year our group of 11 provincials and 6 delegates deepen mutual relationship, get deeper inside in the charismatic dynamics of the Congregation and also can experience another expressions of Salesian charism in other culture and religion environment.
Third day of the EAO provincials meeting was also this dedicated to touch with Timor Leste reality, history, culture and Salesian family. From the meditation at 6 AM and Eucharist concelebrated in the Postnovitiate chapel with a moving homily of Fr. Charles Saw (MYM), until the lunch time the whole group spent in the compound of Don Bosco - Comoro (Dili) with 3 SDB communities around (Provincial House, VTC and Postnovitiate) with more than 50 confreres around.
Morning program was moderated by Br. Raymond Callo with a focus on the Formation sector. Personal and community accompaniment of the confreres was the first topic and during the common discussion emerged again that a deep emphatic listening is already an important way of accompaniment. Formation as life-long process and formation of formators were another two themes presented and commented by the participants. Br. Mon also presented the 2017 EAO Formation delegates resolutions and the 'Joint SDB and Lay people formation plan' point attracted much attention. In a lively discussion the provincials shared their available resources for the formation of different groups of our lay mission partners.
Before lunch was held a short encounter (brain-storming) of provicial delegates-superiors about their needs in order to animate and govern better the delegation.
In the afternoon under the guidance of Fr. Lino (ITM) all participants boarded bus for the Dili city-tour. First stop over was in the most ancient Dili Church of St. Antonio (Matoale) - a place, where also St. Callixtus Caravario attended the Mass and teached the catechism (1927-1929). Most of the afternoon time was spent in the Timor Resistance Museum, that offers a deep insight in the 500 years overall history and also into modern history of the independence movement (1974-2002). Under the guidance of the Museum director the EAO superiors got a deep insight in the rich culture, story of suffering during the occupation time under Indonesia and also learnt about the role of the Catholic Church and outstanding Salesian missionaries in this story.
During a rainy time with a short stop over under the statue of Christ the King (Cristo Rey) all enjoyed the snacks offered by Bishop of Dili, Virglio da Silva, SDB. His diocese with 80 diocesan priests and 150 major seminarians is more complex ministry than his previous one year as provincial of 200 SDB of Timor Leste and Indonesia. Bishop Virgilio continues to stay close to the Salesians and we continue to pray for him every day!
As every day, the last common moments is the Vespers with Good Night Talk. Today was the turn of Japan provincial, Fr. Mario Yamanouchi, who highlighted long history of mutual relationship between the Salesian Family of Japan and Timor Leste, that goes 30 years back. Indeed we need each other! Many Japanese volunteers met Jesus Christ through the Timorese Catholic community while contributing with some concrete projects to the SDB and local people.