Growing at Valdocco of Timor Leste
Fatumaca, Timor Leste, 10 May 2018 -- Every formation year in Fatumaca lasts from December to December in Fatumaca, the Valdocco of Timor Leste. Already Fr. Chavez in 2004 was delighted with this Valdocco-like environment for the integral formation of the novices. Our community of 14 Salesians (Rector Fr. David Savio) does accompany 21 novices (Novicemaster Fr. Anacleto Pires), 73 high school Aspirants (Assales), 222 students (158 are boarders) of the secondary technical school and almost 600 primary school boys and girls. At the center of our community stands the Shrine of Mary Help of Christians, heart of the Salesian family of Timor Leste.
Our novices are coming after one year of prenovitiate in Lospalos and previously from two different Aspirantates - one in Fatumaca (Assales) and other in Dili-Comoro (Centec). The age of our novices goes from 18 to 25 and they are coming from all possible districts of our country, most of them get in touch with Don Bosco in our parishes, mission stations or schools, deeply attracted by models of zealous foreign missionaries, especially Salesian Brothers.
Their daily life is intertwinned with the other 230 Catholic resident boys - students and aspirants - sharing the day in prayers and good night talks, in assistance, sports and work in our large 60+ hectars compound. And many Salesian offer their experience and ability for the conference, class and life sharing. Six practical trainees are also a good daily example for them. There are also some challenges, especiall language difficulty - Tetum, English and Portuguese are all mixed up in our class, readings, prayers and daily life. Thanks to the close accompaniment they are daily growing in the Salesian consecrated vocation.
During past 36 years more than 400 novices entered the Novitiate of Fatumaca, until 2004 there were from both ITM countries, then was started the Novitiate in Indonesia -Tigaraksa. Although for us Salesians of Timor Leste there are many challenges and struggling amidst the cultural and social changes of our young country, this holy place of Fatumaca continue to be a charismatic point of reference where we meet Don Bosco. And also our 21 novices of this year are the living witnesses!
The youngest among the novices, Olderico (18 years) is sharing about his vocation motivation, deepening during past five months in Fatuamaca: "I'm more deeply aware, that Jesus loves me. I strive to know better Jesus and Don Bosco. I'm more deeply convinced about the impact of our humble loving kindess approach changing the boys. And I grow also in the simple assistance amongst our youth."
We are greeting you from the Valdocco of Timor Leste, Fatumaca. Please, pray for our novices, especially in this period of the year, when they discern about the form of one Salesian vocation in two forms - Salesian Brother or Priest!