By FIN Soc Com
Manila, The Philippines, 27 January 2023 -- The Salesians of Don Bosco-Philippines North Province (FIN) announce with profound sadness the death of our dear +Fr. Salvatore Putzu, SDB on January 26, 2023.
He was diagnosed with cancer in September 2022, and it was already in an advanced stage. As he received his Lifetime Achievement Award bestowed on him by the Asian Catholic Communications Inc. (ACCI) during the 16th Cardinal Sin Catholic Book Awards on September 15, 2022, he did know that he was being prepared for the eternal reward.
We pray that he is receiving it now.
Fr. Sal was born on October 12, 1938, in Sardinia, Italy. He made his first profession as a Salesian of Don Bosco on October 27, 1963, and was ordained a priest on September 7, 1974.
He lived a very fruitful and grace-filled life as a true son of Don Bosco, the patron saint of publishers and the Catholic press. He served the Lord as someone who always has in his heart the spread of the Good News of His Kingdom.
He will always be remembered as someone who has championed the field of Catechesis and New Evangelization; as a Salesian priest who always had a gentle and caring heart for the poor and the most in need; and as a great devotee of the Sacred Heart of Jesus as seen in most of his writings.
Fr. Sal spent the last 40 years of his missionary life in the Philippines in the field of Catechesis. In 1989, he founded the Word And Life Publications (WLP) in the service of Catechesis and New Evangelization.
He pioneered the now very popular “Study Edition” of official Church documents like the Papal Encyclicals, Apostolic Exhortations, the Directory for Catechesis, etc.
Under his guidance as editor-in-chief, WLP received the Publisher of the Year Award on September 11, 1995. WLP also received two Catholic Mass Media Hall of Fame Awards for its flagship youth magazine, the Word & Life Magazine (CMMA Hall of Fame awardee for Best Youth-oriented Magazine); and for one of this youth magazine’s regular columns ‘Between the Lines (CMMA Hall of Fame awardee for Best Entertainment Column). Word and Life Publications is now in its 33rd year. He served as Executive Secretary of the Episcopal Commission on Catechesis and Catholic Education (ECCCE) for almost two decades (1993-2001).
During his stint at ECCCE, he was active in publishing DOCETE, a quarterly catechetical review. He was the brain behind the 1990 National Catechetical Year in the Philippines. He has contributed much to the success of the many catechetical conventions and catechetical fora in the country while serving at ECCCE.
He has been an exemplary instrument in the production of the National Catechetical Directory of the Philippines (NCDP) and the wider expansion and circulation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), and the Catechism for the Filipino Catholics (CFC).
He has been recognized by several award-giving bodies like the Catholic Authors Awards by the Asian Catholic Publishers, Inc, The Catholic Mass Media Award, as an outstanding Catholic Publisher for his continuing contribution to the Propagation of the Christian Faith through the print media and radio media.
Last September 15, 2022, Asian Catholic Communications Inc. (ACCI) awarded Fr . Sal with the Lifetime Achievement Award during the 16th Cardinal Sin Catholic Book Awards. This Lifetime Achievement Award is given to a Catholic writer whose lifework represents a continuing contribution to the propagation of the Christian Faith through the print media, in recognition of the exemplary Catholic life and apostolic zeal as reflected in the Christian values and ideals contained in his/her writings.
Let us implore the mercy of the Almighty for his eternal repose.
O Lord, we pray that the soul of Your priest, Your servant +Fr. Sal, which, while he abode in this world, You did adorn with sacred gifts, may ever rejoice in a glorious place in heaven. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.