BIS #7117 Province Community Day Celebrations at Ahmednagar

By Fr Richard Burkhao for BISMumbai

The Salesian Province of Bombay (INB) celebrated its Province Community Day on 4 December 2023 on the feast day of its patron, St Francis Xavier. The festivities took place at St John the Baptist Church in Bhingar, Ahmednagar. Around 90 Salesians participated in the event.

The celebration commenced with the Holy Eucharist at 10:30 a.m., at which Father Savio Silveira, the Provincial of INB, was the principal celebrant. During his heartfelt homily, he praised the remarkable work being carried out by the Salesians in the Ahmednagar region. Father Silveira discussed the Rector Major's Strenna for the year 2024, which centres around the theme 'A Dream that Makes Us Dream'. He urged the confreres to embrace the dream of the Province, which is to revive the missionary spirit and extend their reach to the remote villages and mission territories. 

Following the Eucharist, a video on the present works of the institutes in the Ahmednagar region was presented. The video beautifully depicted the years of mission work that have shaped the region and the impact it has had on the lives of the people.

The Eucharistic celebration was followed by the felicitation of the Provincial Council, who were adorned with traditional Maharashtrian pheta and uparna. Father Richard D'Silva delivered a warm welcome address, expressing gratitude to all the Salesians of INB and giving thanks to God for the blessings the Province had received throughout the year. While raising the toast, Father Briston Britto acknowledged every Salesian's valuable contributions in advancing the mission entrusted to them. Father Ashley Miranda, the Vice-Provincial of INB, extended his appreciation to the Salesians of the Ahmednagar region and other groups who played a significant role in the successful execution of the Province Day celebrations.

Following the felicitation programme, the atmosphere was filled with joy, fellowship, and a sense of togetherness as everyone enjoyed moments of interaction and shared a meal. As a token of remembrance for this special occasion, each Salesian received a memento before leaving the venue.

The Province Day celebrations served as a unifying event, bringing together hearts and minds to express gratitude to God for the blessings bestowed upon them and to celebrate the strong bonds of love and brotherhood that exist within the community.