KOLKATA – A group of ten teachers of Don Bosco School Park Circus took their pledge as Salesian Cooperators at the solemn Eucharistic celebration with Don Bosco Relic during the Salesian Family Day held 17 July. They took their pledge in the presence of Salesian Cooperator’s provincial coordinator Mr. Benedict Beck and in the presence of some 700 Salesian Fathers, Brothers, Sisters, Cooperators and Alumni.
The new members prepared under the direction of Rector & Principal Fr Siby Vadakel are: Brothers Paul Jacob & Sunny Thomas, and Sisters Annie Thomas, Christina Raphael, Devamanohari Fernando, Sherry Taylor, Bipasha Biswas, Jyoti Harney, Suma Thomas and Cicily James. Seven more members are in the ‘come & see” stage of formation.
“It has been a much considered decision for me to join the Salesian Cooperators,” says Mr Sunny Thomas, only Catholic Teacher of neighbouringBirlaHigh Schoolwho took the pledge along with his wife Suma, a Don Bosco school teacher.
For local co-ordinator of the Cooperators, Mr Paul Jacob, “the thought of being a part of the Salesian Family” was a great motivation. Mr Jacob was already engaged in several youth related activities like YCS and Scouts.
Speaking at the occasion Fr Provincial Thomas Ellicherail exhorted both the new cooperators and the entire Salesian Family to grab the occasion of the presence of Don Bosco Relic to re-new, re-live and re-vive their Salesian commitment.”
The Northern India Zonal Secretary Mr. Francis Mondal of Bandel (Auxilium) Unit is of the opinion that “regular formation meeting in the Project of Apostolic Life and a greater knowledge of Don Bosco and his Preventive System is a must for the success of a unit.”
And that too he says “depends on the enthusiasm and energy of Salesians in loco.”
Last year Mr. Mondal visited Don Bosoc schools in Park Circus, Bandel, Malbassy, Mirik and Azimganj as well as the Salesian Sisters in Kurseong to encourage the formation of Cooperator’s Unit.
The Don Bosco Park Circus Unit which rendered yeoman service and provincial level leadership in 1970s had been defunct since 1978, though a fresh attempt was made also in 1994.
The Cooperator as originally envisaged by Don Bosco is a true Salesian in the world. The Cooperators may well claim to be the eldest born of the Salesian Family, for they continue in the steps of the clergy and laity who were Don Bosco’s help before he founded the Salesian Congregation. They are the “extern Salesians” always and inseparably linked with the Salesian Congregation. To be a Co-operator is a practical and up-to–date way of living the love of Christ and participating in the unique mission of the Church.