Saturday, 8 October 2016

Another Salesian house

This morning I joined the community - of course, four of us went in three cars!! - for the memorial Mass of Fr Francis Sutherland who died on Sept. 24, 2016 in Scotland.  A memorial Mass was held today at Farnborough, the Parish where he served for quite some time.

It was a simple Mass - no extravaganza, whatsoever!  Sermon was read out.  I thought I had heard the main celebrant say during his introduction, that there'd be a short life of Fr Frank shared, but there was none.  Anyway, I had the good fortune to meet some other Salesians of the Province. All in their 70's or more.  I also met a retired head teacher (headmaster) of our Salesian school in New Rochelle, US - Mr John.  He was on a holiday to Ireland and England to trace his roots.  He was sharing with me how he met his aunt and through her some two dozen of his relatives.  He was certainly excited about coming to know of his hitherto unknown people.

The community where we had lunch is also the hospital type home for the aged (besides the school and the parish).  No wonder all 13 were so senior.  I was the youngest. One of them didn't believe when I told him that I was a Salesian - it was all too evident on his face!  Until I told him that I was from India and here to study!  Then life returned!

Only a while ago, talking to Fr Marco it suddenly occurred to me: this province his not many young Salesians.  Fr Marco, himself in his late 40's, was the last to be ordained. There's an ordination this year, he tells me.  So too the community where I had lunch this afternoon was the novitiate, once upon a time.  Now they don't have any novices at all!

Anyway, somehow liked the maple tree in the church courtyard.  For that matter, the greenery of this place has a special look.  More about it, another time.

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