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2019.03.28 17:35

5050_'YOUNG - FREE - HOLY'!

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Dumaguete - a unique 52 year story of Lousians and Bosconians

By Fr Wilbert DianonRector, SDB

Dumaguete, Negros Oriental, the Philippines, 27 March 2019 -- 52 years after the foundation of Saint Louis School by the CICM Congregation (Immaculate Heart of Mary) and 33 years after take over by the SDB Congregation (Salesians of Don Bosco) more than 4000 youngsters have graduated from our 'Saint Louis School of Don Bosco: SLSDB in Dumaguete, Negros Oriental. A unique blending in this first coeducational school in FIS province witnesses to the inclusive and involving attraction of Don Bosco's spirituality. In the strong student population city of Dumaguete our SLSDB is the leading educational institution.

Five Salesians (Rector Fr. Wilbert Dianon), 160 teachers and staff, 1540 students (from Kindergarten to High School Grade 12) with numerous parents and Alumni form one large EPC (Educative and Pastoral Community) already deeply rooted in the local Church and society. There are also 500 members of 'Don Bosco Outreach Multipurpose Agricultural Cooperative' (DBOMAC) helping the local farmers in five townships around Dumaguete and many other outreach programs animated by the Educative and Pastoral community.

Among the teachers are 15 young Alumni who made the choice 'to give back what they received through a Don Bosco education', while among the committed parents (PTA) are many who appreciated the family spirit, the listening ear and attitude of the Salesians and the wholistic education of Don Bosco. Also the student leadership appreciates the family spirit, wholistic education in/out of the classroom, excellent sports, music and other cultural opportunitues, and the consistent journey of faith (prayer, Eucharist, confession) in the school.

The whole Dumaguete school community is also aware of the numerous educational challenges: strong negative influence of the social media on 'Bosconian' values, a lack of a vocationl culture (since 1986 no SDB vocation and they are still struggling to implant the vocation of the Salesian Cooperators in this part of Negros Island). They continue their more consistent effective outreach for the poor young people of Dumaguete (Sunday Oratory or Youth Center, more opportunities for Voc-Tech education) and especially a more consistent Salesian formation of our Lay people as Mission Partners.

However the most inspiring lesson is taught by our Bosconians - Lousians, Alumni who were able to involve more than one thousand graduates in the recent 50th anniversary of their Alma Mater (2017) from 'both sides' of the CICM and SDB school history, with a really strong Salesian dedication and kindness and this 'communion model' of SLSDB is probably the strongest witness and model for many in the local Church.

Indeed our current Bosconians can growth as 'YOUNG - FREE - HOLY'!

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