The Emerging Melanesian face of Don Bosco

Br. Anthony Wale SDB

Last 7th-9th July 2019 I experienced what I consider as one of the best and the most fundamental moments in my Salesian life. It was the “Second Melanesian Salesians' Encounter” for us belonging to PGS Vice-Province. This was my first time to participate in the programme and I am really glad for this opportunity.

Gathered in our Provincial House, for 2 full days we discussed what it means to be Melanesian and consecrated Salesian religous, what elements of our culture are to be valued and what needs to be corrected or even rejected because these militate against our Salesian consecrated life.

We all agreed that this annual encounter is important and urgent because as the number of Melanesian Salesians is gradually but steadily growing, we too feel the need to start working on the profile of the Melanesian Salesian. This is an important and necessary step in culturating Don Bosco's charism in Melanesia.

We all agreed that this process of discussion and reflection, facilitated by our Provincial, Fr. Alfred Maravilla, is crucial so that the emerging Melanesian face of Don Bosco may sparkle more clearly, lest Don Bosco could remain foreign to Melanesia. We know this is a slow process that needs time, patience and courage but we are starting through this annual encounter.

At the conclusion of our encounter Br. Thomas Bwaagaro summarised the feelings of all the participants when he said: "I am truly happy with this encounter. I feel accompanied and encouraged by our Vice-Province to inculturate Don Bosco's charism so that we may be truly Melanesian and truly Salesian"!