by Father Blany Pinto for BISMumbai

Salesian Novices from Yercaud of the Class of 1973 -1974 were a numerous 63 young dreamy-eyed boys filled with a steely-resolve to follow Christ the Don Bosco way, under the genial mentorship of Father Rosario Krishnaraj of revered memory, with 52 eventually making their 1st profession. This jolly band of young men having matured like fine wine over the years, meet up once in 03 years.

Having earlier met in Yercaud and then having visited Kerala, 2020 was fixed as destination Mumbai. Coordinated by Father Edwin D'Souza-Rector Shrine of Don Bosco's Madonna at Matunga-Mumbai, 12 Salesians and 5 former novices from the 4 provinces of Bombay(INB), Bangalore (INK), Madras (INM) and Hyderabad (INH) visited the Salesian presences/works at DBCL Kurla, Don Bosco Seawoods Dharave on 09 January, and departed early on 10 January morning to Don Bosco Lonavla for a day's adventure.

Received by the confreres at DBLNL and a hurried breakfast devoured, the 'we are 17' ventured forth to take in the scenic view from Rajmachi Point, trooping back into town for 'what's a visit to Lonavla and no chikki to relish!' All procurements done, it was back to ground zero for a concelebrated holy mass at 12 noon. An afternoon at MariaAshiana Therapeutic Rehabilitation Centre interacting with the young adults in rehab, and a short siesta led onto 'chai time' signalling 'it's good to be up here, but one must need necessarily go down' departure for Mumbai, once more. Father Berchmans Fenandez, the assistant who was then incharge of these novices and who was present at this reunion said, “the reunion is something essential and we bloom every time we meet.”

Many were cheerfully pleased and pleasantly surprised to know that Father Joseph Murphy-the cricketer Salesian was the 1st Rector of Don Bosco Lonavla, since he was the Rector of many of these novices in Tirupattur.

Father Edwin D’Souza, the master overseer of this little adventure said, “It is always a joy to relive the fellowship and companionship each time we meet. Ours is a close knit group and all are happy to come.”