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VIE
2019.05.02 16:29

5077(III)_Heart in Hand

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Vietnamese Salesian Volunteer Group


By Fr. Bartolomeo Phan Tran Thai


HCM City, Vietnam, 2 May 2019 -- What is the Heart in Hand? Have you heard of this volunteer group? On their Facebook presentation you can read: The "Heart in Hand" group consists of Catholic and non-Catholic youths who want to contribute to the spread of the culture of love through personal and community life witness according to the Gospel. They do this especially by sharing and advancing the material, cultural and faith life of the community through long-term volunteer programs, coming to less privileged areas of the country and of the people, with the missionary spirit and educational way of Don Bosco.


The missionary volunteer group, now in existence for two years, is growing through the initiative of many college students and young professionals. From a few dozen last year, more than 40 of them will serve their 3 months exposure during summer. Two Salesians of Don Bosco are responsible for their formation and accompaniment.


It's amazing to read their testimonials after summer volunteer experience in some of our missionary communities in the Highlands or in the North of Vietnam:


"I came to this region by chance, but I wanted to bring them all sorts of things, I wanted to bring love and share some human warm, to share with the less privileged children and people here. A short journey had many interesting surprises. Only a few days ago I would wonder: Why did I come here to this periphery?"


"I spent a few weeks in a very isolated and rural place, sharing the ethnic people's way of life. They enriched me a lot! I have experienced life full of sincerity among this tribal people and learn from their innocent life and innocence of their children. Since I am coming from the big city, during the first days I was nervous and afraid of how I might interact with them. But day by day I experienced, in this windy, isolated village, a new perspective of life. Local people and children here go through it easily, they don't find it difficult, they don't complain about their poor life. They calmly immerse themselves in the landscape and nature here."


Two Salesians are fully involved in the annual formation program starting after the Lunar New Year (Tet) with 4 monthly sessions in Dalat and Ho Chi Minh City and culminating with the send off (mission) for the summer volunteer experience in different Salesian settings in the Highlands and Northern part of Vietnam.


The enthusiasm of the young people also has resulted in the Charity Fundraising Music concert and other activities to support the 'Heart in Hand' - a wonderful fruit of synergy among the Youth Ministry and Missionary Animation Sector of St John Bosco province (Vietnam-Mongolia, VIE).


Heart in Hand FB pages: https://www.facebook.com/heartinhandsalesianvolunteers/




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