Tokyo, Japan, 7 May 2017 -- With the Good Shepherd Sunday Eucharist started the 9th EAO Salesian Cooperators Congress. The 327 participants - both 250 Salesian Cooperators and Aspirants with 70+ young adults gathered in Tokyo downtown of Shinjuku - Keio Plaza Hotel, for 4 days (May 7-10) under the theme 'Journey Together - For the Young - With the Young'
The Apostolic Nuncio to Japan, Mons. Joseph Chennoth presided the Eucharist concelebrated by 30 Salesian Priests. After the opening talk of Philip Yu, the World Councilor ASC for the EAO Region and the welcoming by Kazumi Maruyama, Provincial Coordinators ASC Japan in the evening all participants felt at home. With the Gospel magic of Fr. Mickey. All participants were happy to watch the Video message of the Rector Major:
MESSAGE OF THE RECTOR MAJOR - Fr. Angel Fernandez Artime
My dear Salesians, my dear Salesian Sisters
and specially at this moment, my dear Salesian Cooperators
I received information about your (9th East Asia – Oceania) regional congress (in Tokyo).
I’m very happy to greet you. I am delighted with the presence of some World Council members of the Salesian Cooperators.
I would like to make myself present among you through this message. I am not able to be with you because of my visits to other Provinces.
I am happy to tell you my dear Salesian Cooperators that you have a wonderful Christian and Salesian vocation.
Your vocation is something that Don Bosco himself dreamed… so close to his heart, which you know well.
I encourage you to live truly this Christian vocation, faithful to Jesus and to the mission entrusted to our Salesian Family.
I would like to underline something simple.
I speak to you about vocation.
You are not only a group organized as an Association. It is not just to join hands to carry out a project; it has a much deeper theological meaning (faith). It is a call from God himself to each one of you, to live your Christian and Salesian vocation.
I invite you to truly deepen your vocation identity (as Salesian Cooperators). I invite you to live with true enthusiasm your vocation. I invite you to grow in every way. To grow in your identity, grow in your capacity to make the same proposal to others, who would say like you: Yes, I accept this call of the Lord.
Finally: do not forget that we are family. We are Salesian family which above all means communion among us. Union is not uniformity. It’s a wonderful communion! We are family not only for ourselves. We are family to fulfil the beautiful mission which God has entrusted to us: the youngsters and among them especially those most in need - the really poor, to bring them closer to Jesus, to live as true persons of depth.
My dear Salesian Cooperators, Salesian confreres, Salesians Sisters and Friends of Don Bosco, a warm embrace and a greeting from the heart.
I promise you my special prayers, along with the protection of our dear Don Bosco.
Later in the evening, during the parallel Youth Meeting, over 70 young adult participants Danced, Talked, Sang, and Prayed Together!! Youths from Italy, East Timor, the Philippines, Myanmar, Vietnam, Korea, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Mongolia, Thailand, Singapore, and Japan.
We ask your prayers for this Pentecost-like event where the Salesian Family and the Young are sharing together!