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EAO Salesian Cooperators Workshop (II)

By Fr. Dominic Suphot, SDB
EAO regional delegate for the Salesian Cooperators

Sihanoukville, Cambodia, 26 May 2019 -- During the second and third day of the EAO Salesian Cooperators Formators Workshop in Cambodia (Sihanoukville, May 24-27), all 58 participants from 11 EAO countries are invited to take the path of discernment. The participants spend most of the time in personal, group reflection and assembly sharing, always keeping in mind the workshop's initial inspiration - to be guided by the Holy Spirit.

Under the animation of the EAO World Councillor (2014-2020) Mr Philip Yu, the threefold basic convictions are guiding the reflection: Formation means the ongoing response to the call (vocation) of God. The response is possible only with the Holy Spirit - the main facilitator of good formation. Without an open heart there is no effective formation. The key to the heart of the Salesian Cooperation is charity, listening and accompaniment. Moreover, full commitment to the reflection and group sharing is requested.

In the large conference hall on the second floor of the Don Bosco Hotel School (Director: Br. Martin Tai) each participant shares his / her insights on small colour notes, emerging through attentive listening to each other and to the other provinces. After lunch on Saturday, a nice interactive session with the DB Hotel school youth was welcomed, a kind of cooking session. Each province consumed the fruits of their labour!

On the late evening of Saturday (May 25) the whole group was able to experience 'Sihanoukvillle by Night' through the guided tour around the town. Just 3 years ago this tourist spot at the seashore was an ordinary place, but has now been transformed into the booming construction site of 50 large hotels - casinos built by Chinese developers. The final destination of the evening was the Sihanoukville parish church of St Michael the Archangel, with a common rosary prayer and goodnight given by Br. Martin Tai.

After the Sunday Eucharist (May 26) celebrated by Fr Klement, SDB (EAO regional councillor) the morning session was accompanied also by social communication coverage. Fr Albeiro Rodas (Cambodia Delegation - Soc. Communication) with his 4 lay team members conducted video interviews with 11 Salesian Cooperators and three Provincial Delegates based on the following questions: What attracts you to the Salesian Cooperators vocation? How do you live the Don Bosco Preventive system in your personal life? How do you share the Salesian charism and vocation around you? What is your contribution for the rejuvenating of the Association of Salesian Cooperators?

The 50 interview ASC formation survey was shared by Fr Klement and by Ms Flora May Figuracion (FIS) with many deep insightful points about vocation attraction, vocation storytelling and focus on the presence of Jesus in the life of each Salesian Cooperator. During the last few sessions of the workshop each province is invited to ponder the main 'lines of action' emerging from the listen to the Spirit.

'The Spirit will teach you everything' - the words of Sunday's Gospel (6th Sunday of Easter) are indeed also a light for the formation path of the 2500 Salesian Cooperators in the EAO region in 126 respective centers.

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