Vocation story of Indonesia prenovice (2)
Sumba, Indonesia, 10 March 2018 -- My name is Stefanus Belido Maing, just call me Stef. I am a 18 year old pre-novice here in Don Bosco Sumba. Actually I was born in Larantuk, Flores, a town several thousand kilometers from here.
So, how did I end up here, in the Salesian Pre-novititate House, in this Island of Sumba? Well, I would say that Google Search had brought me to Don Bosco. And here is how it came about. …
When I was in my Year 11 of Senior high school in my hometown, I was invited to spend some days of Easter in a seminary to think about my vocation. I was attracted to a number of activities of being close to God and its way of life and thought of becoming a religious.
After graduating my Year 12, I asked permission from my parents to take the entrance test in a famous convent (=SVD) of religious. I took the test with my other companions, but later was told that I was not accepted. However, a nun called me up and told me of a new male congregation that was based in Sumba Island: the Salesians of Don Bosco.
I have never heard of this congregation, except that Don Bosco was the patron of a nearby school. So, I quickly took out my mobile phone and searched Google for “Don Bosco Sumba.” There was not much information that came up, but there was something about Don Bosco and Jakarta. So, I searched Google again and read more about St John Bosco being a founder of a religious order that took care of the young. I could not explain it, but I felt an affinity for working with the young and the children.
However, an uncle priest who also heard about my interest to join a religious order, had called up my father so that I could try to join my uncle’s congregation that was based in Kalimantan. And my father preferred to follow my uncle’s advice, while I was not so much inclined towards it.
I felt anxious because I was apparently going against my father’s wishes. However, the whole extended family was consulted about this, and my father eventually agreed to let me try the Pre-novitiate of the Salesians in Sumba.
Now, already 7 months have passed since I first entered the Pre-novitiate here in Sumba and I am happy, knowing more about St John Bosco and the Salesian way of life. For example: doing one’s ordinary duties, extraordinarily well. But despite that, I still lack a better mastery of the English language. I guess Google will come in useful again, right?
Maybe… how about Google Translate? (wink).