BIS #6821 Extraordinary Visitation at St Anne’s
By Fr Ajay D’Monte for BISMumbai
Fr Biju Michael, the General Councillor for the South Asia Region, conducted the extraordinary visitation of the three Salesian presences of the St Anne’s community in Ahmednagar on 6 and 7 November 2022.
Having arrived in Ahmednagar on the morning of 6 November, he was felicitated by the parishioners of St Anne’s parish, after which he addressed them. He made a quick visit to the Don Bosco Cooperative Bank in St Anne’s premises. The cooperative bank established in 1992 is aimed towards the upliftment of the urban as well as rural people of Ahmednagar taluka.
At 10.00 a.m., Fr Biju gave the opening conference to the Salesians during which he reminded them about the triple pillar of Salesian Consecrated life: Salesian identity, community life and mission. After the conference, he met the two Salesians of St Anne’s presence, Frs Briston Britto and Ajay D’Monte, and got acquainted with the life and mission of the house.
In the evening, Fr Biju Michael went to the second presence of the community – St John’s Parish, Bhingar. St John’s is the oldest of the three communities, and was the parish entrusted to the Salesians when they began their work in Ahmednagar. He met the two Salesians, Frs Thomas D’Costa and Vishwas Pereira, and went about the premises. He celebrated the Eucharist with the parishioners and thereafter interacted with them.
After dinner, Fr Biju Michael went to Bosco Gramin Vikas Kendra (BGVK), Kedgaon, the third presence of the community. The next day, 7 November, he celebrated the Eucharist with the Salesians after which he went around the campus and the farm. After meeting the Salesians, Frs George D’Abreo, Clarence Martis and Br Vincent Nigrel, he met the BGVK staff at 12.00 noon and he had a very fruitful encounter with them. The staff shared their opinions, dreams for the institute, and a few suggestions. He joined the staff and Salesians for lunch at 12.40 pm.
Fr Biju gave the concluding conference to the House Council at 4.00 pm. He put before them his observations and recommendations. He concluded by inviting the Salesians to live the motto ‘give me souls, take away the rest’ with vigour and keeping in mind the three pillars of which he spoke at the beginning of the visitation.
The visit was a source of grace and renewal for the Salesians and the staff.