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By Fr. Theparat Pitisant, SDB


Bangkok, Thailand, 11 August 2017 -- At 91 years of age, 61 years a priest and missionary in Thailand passed away Fr Alberto L. Gustav Roosens, a Belgian Salesian missionary par excellence. About half of his missionary life in Thailand he has lived in the southern regions of Thailand, remarkable especially those years spent in the 3 most southern provinces of Thailand Pattani, Narathivat and Yala with a majority of Muslim population.


Fr. Roosens spent last few years of his life in the Provincial house community in Bangkok, still busy with as before with the correspondence to his thousands of benefactors and looking for his 'last dream' - the hostel for the young people coming to the capital from the provinces.


Born n 1926 in Belgium, Mechelen - Brussel diocese, made his first profession as Salesians in 1947. Before his missionary send off for Thailand he was well prepared with the diploma as a medical nurse and teachers degree as well his BA in education and economics. His theology in Bollengo (Italy) and Melchet Court (UK) was his first international experience.


As missionary to Thai Province of St. Paul Fr. Gustav was assigned as provincial secretary and economer, as in charge of the Hostel in Bangkok, economer and rector of Don Bosco Bangkok. Before the long 30 years in the Southern Thailand he was active in many Salesian schools also as Delegate for the Don Bosco Past Pupils of Thailand.


In order to start of support many new projects in Don Bosco schools Fr. Roosens kept correspondence with thousands of Past Pupils and Benefactors in Thailand and abroad. Twice (1995 and 1998) he was asked by the Princess Sirindhorn to pass the night in the Royal Palce and celebrate in the morning the Mass for the Belgian Queen Fabiola on her visit in Thailand.


His outgoing personality and capability to relate and communicate well in many languages (FRENCH - DUTCH -ITALIAN -ENGLISH -THAI -GERMAN). In 2013 he was awarded with the Papal Honor 'Pro Ecclesia and Pontefice'.


We give thanks to God for the Salesian missionary par excellence who transformed the life of many young people in Thailand and we pray for his eternal rest in the Salesian garden. The funeral of Fr. Roosens is scheduled for Wednesday August 16 in the Salesian Parish in Banpong.


TASKS ASSIGNED

YEAR

HOUSE

TASKS ASSIGNED

18-12-1956

 

ARRIVED AS MISSIONARY IN THAILAND

1956

HUA HIN (3 MONTHS)

LEARN THE THAI LANGUAGE

1957-1958

SALADAENG - BANGKOK

PROVINCIAL SECRETARY  - IN CHARGE OF THE HOSTEL

1959-1964

DON BOSCO - BANGKOK

ECONOMER -PROVINCIAL SECRETARY, PRINTING PRESS 

1964-1968

UDORNTHANI

ECONOMER

1968-1972

DON BOSCO – BANGKOK

ECONOMER

1972-1975

DON BOSCO – BANGKOK

RECTOR  - ECOMOMER

1975-1978

SAINT DOMINIC

PROFESSOR -IN CHARGE OF THE PAST PUPILS OF THAILAND

1978-1981

NONTHABURI

STARTED THE WORK AND IN CHARGE

1981-1989

SURATTHANI

PARISH PRIEST – ECOMOMER DIOCESE – ECONOMER HOUSE

1989-2009

YALA-PATTHANI-NARATHIVATH

PARISH PRIEST

2009-2017

PROVINCIAL HOUSE

SENIOR CONFRERE


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