(Ashiaman- Ghana) – From Tuesday, July 9, to Thursday, July 18, the annual High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) took place at United Nations headquarters in New York City.
The program attracted more than 2,000 participants, including some 100 government ministers. Over 40 countries have presented their Voluntary National Reviews.
The HLPF is the main U.N. platform for follow-up and review of the progress made toward the 2030 Agenda, consisting of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that were set out in 2015.
The departure was on 6th of July 2019 at Kotoka International Airport.
The Provincial Economer Fr Christof Nizniak traveled with Benson Osei-Savio Boateng and Ms Abigail F Gyabaa to Nairobi.
They were met on arrival by Fr Thomas the UN representative for Salesians of Don Bosco. He was in charge of the organisation of the event.
Ambassador of Samoa hosted the Don Bosco Youth Network West Africa delegation.
They got access to the UN and went to many places at the UN headquarters in New York.
Fr Mark at New Rochelle gave them a tour of their community and had Lunch with the delegates.
Ms Abigail F Gyabaa on the 11th at a side event represents the African Youth on Sustainable Development Goal 13, voicing Youth Aspirations and Climate Urgency.
Benson Osei-Savio Boateng , Advocacy and Networking coordinator of the Anglophone West Africa Salesian Province’s development office, showed what Salesian works in Ghana, especially Don Bosco Technical Institute, are doing to provide diverse educational programs that will meet the demand for skills training.
Madam Ugona and Madam Beauty Co board chairs of all Civil Society Organisations in Ghana supported the Salesians of Don Bosco at most of the events.
Friday 12 the team experienced Friday for the future where students come to demonstrate against climate change at the UN headquarters.
The Ghana exhibition stand was also that of the Civil Society Organisations and the team supported with explaining Ghana to those who visited the stand.
They delegation had lunch with Madam Martha Ama Akyaa Phoobe the permanent delegate to United Nations.
During the reading of the Voluntary National Review (VNR) report, Ghana was presented by government but Ghana presented with the civil societies.
Don Bosco at the High Level Political Forum helped represent the young people and their views to the world.
At the end of AFW 6th Provincial Chapter we renew our entrustment to Mary Help of Christians. It is a continuation of entrustment which we did for the first time in 2013, renewed again in 2016.
In our deliberation on the topic of PC6 “What kind of Salesians for the youth of today” we cannot forget that one of the fundamental attributes of good Salesian is his aspect of Marian spirituality.
Like Don Bosco to be docile to the voice of the Holy Spirit under the guidance of Mary who is our Mother, Teacher and Guide. Entrustment to Mary is a sign of filial love for Her as well as necessity for our present time. We need Mother’s assistance, help and guidance.
God the Father by entrusting His Son Jesus to Mary left us an example to be followed. Throughout the history of the Church many people entrusted their lives to Jesus through Mother Mary. Mama Margaret the mother of John Bosco entrusted him to Mary after his birth. In the dream at the age of 9, Jesus introduce to little John Mother Mary as the best Teacher and Guide. Don Bosco after his ordination till the end of his life grew in intimate relationship with Mary Help Of Christians.
At the end of his life Don Bosco stated firmly concerning the role of Mary: “She has done everything”. Don Bosco through all his actions manifested to us that He was entirely for Jesus through Mary. At the apparition at Fatima Mother Mary invited everybody to consecrate himself/herself to Her Immaculate Heart. Years later our Lord Jesus through Blessed Alexandrina da Costa asked the Church to do the act of entrustment of the World to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Following this urgent request Pope Pius XII in October 11942 consecrated the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. From that time onwards Popes followed his example: Paul VI entrusted the world to Mother Mary at the conclusion of Vatican Council II, John Paul II in 1982, 1983, 1984 (entrustment of the world and Russia), 2000, 2003(entrustment of young people); Benedict XVI in 2010 entrusted the world and the priest to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and Pope Francis in 2013 and 2017. Rector Major Don Vigano at the conclusion of GC21 encouraged all Salesians to promote and sustain devotion to Mary Help of Christians as a sure path for our Congregation to grow in fidelity and in the number of vocation. Today we bless and dedicate this grotto to Mary Help of Christians. This physical structure of the grotto will remain for next generations to come an external sign of financial contribution of all AFW communities as well as entrustment to Mary Help of Christians. We commit ourselves to maternal care of Mother Mary because She is that humble handmaid for whom and through whom the Lord has done great things for Her, for the world, the Church and for the young people. Mother Mary we ask you to hide us under your mantle of purity, humility and love for Jesus and young people. Fr. Krzysztof Nizniak SDB Provincial Economer 01.05.2019
(SDBAFW – Tappita) – The Salesian mission at Tappita, restarted at the beginning of 2018, after years of forced absence, is “at the far edge of the world”, within the Liberian forest.
Yet there are even more peripheral realities: like the villages of Sahnpa and Zeah, which Salesian missionaries managed to visit for the first time just a few weeks ago, after more than a year after their arrival to the area.
“Last year, the rains started early and so they took us by surprise,” explained the director of the mission, Fr Riccardo Castellino.
Currently Sahnpa has no real church as the one they had was crushed by a tree in 2016, felled during a bad storm. To avoid the complete dispersion of the community, one of the members of the village has made available a room of his house for Sunday meetings.
After having recalled the faithful with the bell – “or rather, beating on that wheel rim of truck that serves as a bell,” continues Fr Castellino – in that room a dozen people gather, surprised to see the priest, but extremely pleased to see that they have not been forgotten.
After the Mass, the Salesian is accompanied to see the place where the church stood, and where the community intends to rebuild it: it is an expanse of brushwood, where there are already many reconstruction materials: the blocks of mud, the timber cut and stacked, the metal sheets, “even if still more are needed, but the money is gone” …In order to get the work starting again, the first step is to clean up that site, but for the construction there is still a lack of cement and tools and material required by manpower.
For this reason, Fr Castellino asks the community members to make a donation and send it to him.
“We will try to do something to make sure that with the arrival of the rains, this community has a roof under which to gather to pray and grow in faith,” he concludes.
In Zeah, on the other hand, there had been another Salesian the previous week, who said that not only did the inhabitants not have a church, but they had never even had one: the Mass was celebrated under the palava hut of the village, the kiosk used for village meetings.
“With the church or without the church, faith survives! But we commit ourselves to doing something for them too … and to visit them a little more often,” concludes Fr Castellino.
The 26 teachers who were drawn from all the Anglophone West Africa Province Technical schools have graduated from two weeks intensive program on Renewable energy (basic solar system) training, organized by the Province in partnership with a German NGO and others.
Among the participants are Sr. Justina FMA and our PT John Wiwoloku. In special way we congratulate our dear John Wiwooloku who was also received the 3rd best student of the group.
In his closing remarks, our Provincial Fr Michael Karikunnel urged them to make good of the knowledge they have acquired to help in their various communities and to light up Africa.
Earlier on in his remarks, their main Instructor Br Christof Baum expressed satisfaction for the high level of participation by the students, according to him all the students passed their exams and so they were all qualified to be given certificates.
In his opening remark, the Principal of the school Fr Mark Anthony Okpala, advised the students to put into good use the knowledge they have gained, according to him Jesus Christ evangelized the world with only 12 apostles, and so the 26 of them are enough to light 💡 up Africa.