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By Sr. Tecla Chit May, FMA

Anisakan, Myanmar, 24 January 2016 - This year, the Provincial Gratitude Day of Cambodia-Myanmar Province was celebrated in Myanmar on the 24th of this month, feast of St. Francis De Sales, the Titular Saint of the Salesian Congregation, in the Community of Blessed Maria Romero, Pyin Oo Lwin. The day was chosen to coincide with the end of the Canonical Visit to the Community of St. Mary Domenica Mazzarello, Anisakan and Day of Spirituality and Junior Sisters’ Encounter with the Provincial, Sr. Jessica Salvaña. Early morning of the 23rd, all the Sisters from Yangon, Chanthagon and Pyin Oo Lwin arrived for the Eucharistic celebration where right after Holy Communion, Sr. Jessica consigned to each Sister the modified Constitutions of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians. All the Sisters were very happy because they have been waiting for it for a long time and finally, the Rule of their lives has reached into their hands. It was also a heartwarming preparation for the feast of Provincial Gratitude Day.

The big day came on the 24th, the Provincial Gratitude Day. The representatives from the different communities in Myanmar arrived with a joyful heart. To make the celebration more memorable and to heed the call of the Holy Father, Pope Francis, some very poor families in the periphery of Anisakan were invited to join the celebration.

The day began with a well prepared and well animated Morning Prayer wherein all the 27 Myanmar FMA were present to praise and thank the Lord for the gift of each other. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass was then celebrated by Rev. Fr. Joachim Ye Maung SDB, the Rector of the Salesian Philosophate. The choir was composed of all the girls of the three Houses of Anisakan, Chanthagon and Pyin Oo Lwin who sang with their melodious voices. Soon after the Holy Mass, there followed a short entertainment lovingly prepared by the Sisters, girls and staff. The program would not have been completed without the Sisters’ part who showed their originality with the display of different hues bringing out clearly its message: when one color remains alone, it will only be useful for oneself but when combined with other hues they will bring out their splendor which is valuable for the good of others. It was intertwined with graceful movements that brought the Ohs and Ahs! from the floor.

It was indeed an enjoyable moment of togetherness. Sr. Jessica was moved by the gestures of gratitude when she was asked to give her final words of wisdom.

During lunch, our invited guests were given special attention. They all ate to their hearts’ content and after lunch Sr. Jessica gave them some useful gifts. Their hearts were filled with smile and had no words to express their thanks for the generosity and love of the Sisters.

Late in the afternoon, the Sisters went out to the National Botanical Garden for a moment of fellowship and bonding. It was a day to be remembered and the echo of thanks that we all uttered on this day resounds to the far distant mountains and valleys and vibrates in the hearts of many particularly those who are in the periphery.



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