Monday, August 31, 2009

Salesian Retreat

For the first time in its history the Salesian Province of New Delhi had its annual retreat at Sumedha Centre, Jeolikote, Uttarakhand.

Sumedha Centre is the latest apostolic presence the Salesian Province of New Delhi has inaugurated. The Centre is housed in the former Pastoral Centre of the Diocese of Bareilly. The Salesians moved here in August 2008, and began offering programmes from March this year.

The Retreat was held from August 25 to 31. The theme was “Da Mihi Animas, Cetere Tolle” and was facilitated by Fr. Joseph Kezhakkekara, former and first Provincial of New Delhi, and earlier of Kolkata, and currently Rector of Don Bosco School Alaknanda, New Delhi. Twenty four Salesians participated in the Retreat

Fr. Kezhakkekara planned and presented the Retreat as a preparation for the special renewal of vows on December 18, to mark the 150th Anniversary of the Founding of the Salesian Congregation. He interpreted Don Bosco’s motto “Da Mihi Animas…” as a total surrender of oneself to God and making God the priority in one’s life. He illustrated the theme by presenting examples of men and women who have totally surrendered themselves to God. He stated emphatically that only such surrender makes Salesian life worthwhile, and challenged the Retreatants to deepen and enhance their surrender to God and suggested some relevant means to do that.

“This retreat has helped me immensely to renew myself and find a new focus for my life as a Salesian and priest” said Fr. James, one of the retreatants. “The place is wonderful. The environment really helps to pray and reflect.”

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