Thathi's question when translated into the formation contest would be thus: what if a youngster does not really fit in our 'regular' formation plan? Will he go on to become a Salesian or will he be shown the door sooner or later? This has many implications. We first need to be sure what is our formation process meant for? Uniform, thinking alike, ready to use Salesians or men attuned to the voice of God and willing to do anything for young people? A similar question would be: Is our formation meant to churn out 'administrators' for our institutions or 'visionaries' for our apostolate? Whatever be our answer, one thing is certain: it ought to be in sync with our formative process.
I would certainly prefer the latter 'breed'. But I am still not sure how can a uniform, singular formation process help individual charisms to mushroom and bloom in varied contexts while remaining faithful to the 'Salesian charism'. How exactly to make it flexible enough to encourage and enthuse creativity while retain the identity so as to be still called SDBs? As Fr Maliekal asked, "How do we distinguish the picnicker from the seeker?" Where and how does one draw the line between a freak and a saint?