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What is your prayer for the GC 28?

By our own correspondent

Valdocoo, Turin, 16 February 2020 -- After 62 years the SDB General Chapter is being held once more at Valdocco in Turin (GC 18 in 1958). The 222 Delegates who represent all 90 Salesian Circumscriptions (Provinces, Viceprovinces and other Circumscriptions) have come from the following Regions:

  • Africa-Madagascar: 28 delegates
  • America Southern Cone: 22 delegates
  • East Asia-Oceania: 25 delegates
  • South Asia: 33 delegates
  • Central and North Europe: 37 delegates
  • Interamerica: 26 delegates
  • Mediterranean: 31 delegates
  • and General Council: 16 delegates, UPS 2 delegates, RMG 1 delegate and
  • Rector Major emeritus

Moreover there another 20 confreres (Salesian Brothers, Experts, Delegates) invited by the Rector Major without the right to vote ('observers'), among them four members of our EAO region. It brings the total number to some 240 participants in the Valdocco theatre assembly hall.

18 young people (3 from EAO region) have also been invited to attend the GC28 (16 February-4 April) during the third week and 11 lay mission partners (2 from EAO region) will be present during the sixth week of the General Chapter.

Among the EAO delegates and observers, according to the country of origin, are 7 from the Philippines, 3 from Vietnam, 3 from Timor Leste, 3 from Myanmar, two from China - Thailand - Korea and one from each of Australia, India, Japan and Samoa. Beside them are two other GC28 delegates born in EAO countries - the Provincial of Mozambique (born in Timor Leste) and the Delegate of USA-West (born in Vietnam).

From the EAO region there are 4 provinces (AUL, VIE, THA and TLS) that have three members and the other 8 provinces have two members at the General Chapter.

We are glad that among the EAO delegates there are also 3 Salesian Brothers: Br. Ed Villordon from FIS, Br. Dominic Nam from VIE and Br. Marcal Lopes from TLS. The other 27 are Salesian priests.

According to age there are 6 EAO members between 40-45 years, 14 members between 50-60 years and 10 members above 60 years of age. The average age of EAO delegates and observers is 57.9 years, the most senior is Fr. Joseph Quang (Provincial of Vietnam-Mongolia, 72 years) and the Benjamin of the EAO group is Fr. Bosco Zeya Aung (Viceprovincial of Myanmar, 44 years).

Moreover there are three more EAO Salesians who will contribute with their services to the smooth running of the GC28 - Fr. Nestor Impelido (FIN), Fr. Daijiro Okamoto (GIA) as translators and Br. Hilario Seo (KOR) as the GC28 photographer.

The following 7 weeks is a special 'Salesian Pentecost' for the whole Congregation, and for all EAO confreres a good chance to get closer to the heart of Don Bosco through prayer, listening and sharing.

One of the senior members within our Regions shares today: "One year ago when I first read the theme of the GC28, I was very surprised, because I was thinking about which model of Salesian there should be for today's youth. I have heard not a few complaints from many young people about the religious qualities of some Salesians, even among seniors. Some time later, it came to my mind that maybe, as with previous General Chapters, documents are not able to change their heart. Those who are zealous will continue to be zealous and those who are not will continue their lifestyle as before. How can a miracle happen?"

Starting from the Rector Major, we are asking everyone to pray for the General Chapter, that begins today (Sunday 16 February) with the solemn Eucharist in the Basilica of Mary Help of Christians at Valdocco. What are you praying for?

I would ask to pray that all of our GC28 delegates will be open to the working of the Holy Spirit and all the other confreres around the world may be inspired by the Valdocco event.




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