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By EAO Region - Salesian Family Commission

       Valdocco & EAO 15 January 2022 -- The 2nd global experience of the Salesian Family Spirituality Days (2022 - 40th edition since 1973) has already aroused a lot of enthusiasm and inspiration from around the EAO region during the first two days (13-14 January) with 3 live-streamed sessions. The 'Salesian Year' of 2022, with the 400th anniversary of our Patron Saint Francis de Sales, brings thousands SF members around the world together - many more than in 2021.

       Between Valdocco (Turin, Italy) with some 200 participants (among them - Br Dominic Nam, SDB, 3 SF Sisters from Thailand (SIHM, DQM and SQM) with 7 members of the Caritas Sisters of Jesus General Council (Superior Sr Emiliana Park) and the 23 countries of the EAO region, a wonderful communion has emerged with the help of many SF 'volunteers' (simultaneous translators, IT team, coordinators and especially the SF delegates in our 12 provinces).

       During the first session (13 Jan - World level) we were inspired by the presentation of the Strenna by the 10th successor of Don Bosco and a deeply felt youthful dynamic in the presentations by a young Italian couple with amazing interaction with all 7 Salesian regions around the world. The happy Filipino aspirants faces from Canlubang went on the world stage!

       On the second day (14 Jan) two sessions were lived-streamed - first the EAO regional level with the very much active moderation of Fr Jay David (FIN) and two SYM animators, offering solid spiritual food for this year with 3 sharings on the life, spirit and following of St Francis de Sales by Fr Chris Ford (AUL), Fr Joel Camaya (FIN) and Fr Domingos Leong (CIN). Interaction with the speakers, presentation of the CDB secular institute and ADMA, an attractive welcoming dance (PGS - Solomon Islands) and both prayers (Opening by FMA past pupils with Final prayer by Japan's Salesian Family) ended with the tough reality of the present situation in Myanmar by way of a Goodnight.

       On the same day with a few hours difference the third online session (World level) began with the Open forum on St Francis de Sales (Fr Eunan McDonnel, Fr Giuseppe Roggia, Visitation Sister Maria Grazia Franceschini and journalist Prof. Vania Deluca. All of them stirred enthusiasm for our Saint Patron. Final words were from our Postulator General, Fr Pierluigi Cameroni.

       One of the SDB provincials shares: "I am really more proud to be a member of the large Salesian Family! How enriching is the exchange of gifts among the 32 SF groups (16 in our EAO region). We are really very grateful for the visible unity of our family around the Rector Major and this occasion for deepening our spirituality and Salesian spirit. This year is really a blessing for all of us, since we receive a very inspiring and clear indication for our journey during 2022."

       The FMA missionary community from Mongolia shares: "The aspects that identify us most as members of the Salesian Family are God's presence in the human heart: to incarnate or translate Christian humanism in every reality no matter if we are in the midst of non-Christians. A kind and friendly way of dealing with people. This is why we are different from other Religious Congregations. Other Religious or people at once recognized that we are Salesians. Joyful and friendly is our identity."

       Around the 12 EAO provinces and 6 delegations there were some hundreds of the 16 SF group members who followed these first 3 sessions (13-14 Jan) on the SF-EAO YouTube in 8 languages, some on the ANS Facebook pages. The photos help us recognise various joint groups in Thailand, Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, Indonesia, Korea, Philippines etc.

       For some provinces, due to summer holidas these days will be taken up at a different time thanks to these quality materials (NB Japan - 14 February with the traditional Strenna poster in manga style) all available online.

       We pray for a safe and smooth continuation of the program during the last two days (Saturday - EAO session and World session, Sunday - Eucharist and conclusion from Valdocco). The AustraLasia editors would highly appreciated any kinds of photos from provincial or local versions of this event, to inspire and encourage others!

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