By Viet SC
Ba Thon, Vietnam, 16 August 2022 -- A Mass of First Profession for 12 confreres took place at 6:00 a.m., Saturday, August 13, 2022, in the Community of the Sacred Heart, Ba Thon, in the Salesian Province of Don Bosco Vietnam. The event took place in a spirit of thanksgiving to God.
Father Provincial, Barnabas Le An Phong was the main celebrant; concelebrating with him were Salesian priests and guests. Attending the Mass were the Provincial and Sisters of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, other religious orders, parents, benefactors, relatives and friends of the candidates.
At the same time last year, the Mass of the First Vows took place in silence because of the Covid-19 epidemic, but this year, the Mass was organized and conducted in a joyful and holy atmosphere, clearly etched on the cheerful, enthusiastic faces of all participants on this important day.
At the beginning of the Mass, the celebrant invited the community to give thanks to God because he still constantly chooses to call young men to follow him in his mission of loving and serving young people in the spirit of Don Bosco.
After the Gospel, the Salesian consecration rite proceeded in its seven parts:
- Part 1: introduction and petition
- Part 2: homily
- Part 3: questioning the candidate about his intention to commit
- Part 4: prayer for candidates
- Part 5: candidates profess their vows
- Part 6: giving badges of religious vows
- Part 7: giving the Constitutions
In the homily, Fr Provincial shared the meaning of religious profession with the community. Profession, he explained, is not an act of escaping from the difficulties and complications of daily life, but a commitment in love to God, in the light of faith. With this commitment, Religious will draw closer to God in their vocation to be sons of God, become salt and leaven, and collaborate with God in mission to spread His peace to everyone... Especially in their Salesian vocation they are really a sign and bearer of God's love for young people, especially those who are poorest.
Following that line of thought, Father Provincial continued to address the 12 candidates. He reminded them that after the Profession mass, they will officially belong to the great Salesian Family. Therefore, he invited them to live with their new life, full of love for God and to stick to the Congregation in a sense of responsibility and a sense of belonging.
After the homily, the 12 confreres expressed their commitment before the Provincial by making a vow to live in obedience, poverty and chastity, according to the path traced out in the Salesian Constitutions. Father Provincial, on behalf of the Rector Major, accepted the candidates into the family of those consecrated in the spirit of Don Bosco.
Before the end of the Mass, Father Peter Pham Van Bo, Rector of the Sacred Heart Community of Ba Thon, thanked the entire community in different roles, for being present, serving and praying for the candidates.
After Mass, everyone took pictures together and continued to share the joy of a family breakfast.