Pune, March 24:

It was indeed the experience of being with Don Bosco himself as His 10th successor and head of the Don Bosco Salesian Society , Rev.Fr. Angel Fernandez Artime paid his holy visit to the city today. He reached the city this morning and visited Don Bosco Youth Centre Koregaon Park. There, he conversed with the members of the Salesian Society and had the lunch with them. The Rector Major was then hosted in a chariot accompanied by a rally from the Youth Centre to the Don Bosco Ground Yerwada. The Sacred Heart Parish and Don Bosco Educomplex offered a grand and warm Typically Maharashtrian welcome in the music of Dhol-Tasha, Feta, Puneri Pagdi, Aukshan Aarti etc. as the procession reached the ground. After the warm welcome, Rector Major moved for an informal meet and talk with the community salesians, students and other members at tea.

            The holy priest then proceeded to the ground for the inauguration and blessing  of the newly constructed stage. He then celebrated the holy euchrist for the community of salesians, parishners, teachers, students from all the salesian parishes, their sister concerns, schools and colleges, Auxilium convents and the followers of Roman Catholic church from Pune, Lonavala, Chichwad, Ahemednagar were present at this occasion.  Addressing the community, The Rector Major thanked for the overwhelming And unique welcome. In his message, he said, “ As a Christian we should always keep all our doors open for all so that anyone can reach to us easily and we can also reach out to them.”  Fr.Bosco D’mello, the Principal of Don Bosco Pune expressed his heart saying, “ It is indeed a very joyful and auspicious visit of our Rector Major. We are really privileged to welcome him. His Presence will leave behind abundant blessings for the students, teachers and the community.” Some students also expressed their feelings in the words : We feel privileged to meet the 10th successor of Don Bosco. It’s once in lifetime opportunity and a special blessing for us.” Tr. Manjusha Thorat said, “ The presence of the Rector Major is not less than presence of Don Bosco among us for me. I feel very lucky to meet him.” A parishner Mr.Cyril Asirvadam commented, “The Rector Major’s visit to Pune is an extraordinary event. As a person he is very much down to earth, easy to approach and talk. All this will have a very strong positive impact on the school and community in the city.”

The Eucharist was then followed by community dinner with the Rector Major before He leaves.

...............Report by Prashant Gaikwad & Samudra Gupta.