Monday, 21 September 2009

Sharing and enlarging the family

One of the main problems why we Salesians find it difficult to find collaborators for our efforts is perhaps our 'me-and-MY JOB' attitude. We hardly make known to others, especially and specifically to our beneficiaries, our works. We run a school but hardly do any of our children or their parents know that we also work for children on the street, the juveniles, the school drop-outs, ... Our Parishioners only get good and holy sermons about the 'Kingdom of heaven', not much about how it is already being unfolded in our boardings, youth centres, technical schools, street children homes, counselling centres... !

Conclusion, we slog today, tomorrow and here after - all by ourselves! Worse still, when students pass out of our institutions, they have little or no sense of social responsibility, even though we taught them, we paid their fees, we bought their uniforms, we provided them with the best of education!! But imagine if we were to involve all those whom we interact with in our daily mission, introduce them to OUR work (not merely my work)... Some ideas that cropped up in my mind today as I listened to Fr MC George I put down here:
  • take boys/parishioners to our other Salesian centres for a day of outing.
  • while preparing souvenirs, brochures and booklets, include a small note about the other works we do.
  • invite young people for a retreat or day of recollection in our formation houses (when the formees are there, not when they are gone for holidays!).
  • get our own friends to speak to our aspirants - anything!
  • get street children into our 'mainstream' schools.
  • involve high school children in organising camps for the less-privileged children.
I need to speak about my family - after all, the one working in the boarding or parish or street children centre, or the mission station is my brother, my confrere! And if my extended family starts working together (each one in their own way), ah... now that's going to be something grand! I won't have to carry Don Bosco or Christ alone!!

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