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Veneration of Don Bosco's relic at St Marys, Sydney - Day 2

Saturday, 26 August. Once again the Engadine community is invited to St. Marys to continue the celebrations of the veneration of the relic of Don Bosco. This time the Vietnamese community in the region are invited to honour St. John Bosco in this manner. A very well prepared Eucharist in Vietnamese is celebrated just before dinner. the newly ordained Salesian priest Fr. Joseph presides together with Fr. Jeff Miller sdb and three other visiting Vietnamese priests. The readings from the feast of Don Bosco are again proclaimed as they were the night before at the Eucharist presided by Bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen: Ezekiel 34, - called to be a good shepherd - Phil 4:4-9 – rejoice in the Lord always - and Mt 18:1-6,10 – Jesus said, “Let the little children come unto me”.

After the Eucharist a very well prepared meal is offered to all in the parish hall prepared by the Vietnamese community. During the dinner the SDB and FMA communities of St. Marys entertain all: first with a very lively and meaningful action song to God. After this, in keeping with the centennial celebrations of the 100th year of SDB presence in Australia, the SDB of the St. Marys community act out the foundation story of Bartholomew Garelli’s encounter with Don Bosco and the disgruntled sacristan on 8 December 1841. The FMA of St. Marys act out the foundation of our Institute with the visit of Don Bosco and 100 boys in 1864 in Mornese and then the foundation day of our Institute of the Daughters of Mar Help of Christians, 5 August, 1872. Both scenes are acted out in the Vietnamese language. It was a fitting way to end the encounter of the Vietnamese community of the region with the active participation of the SDB and FMA, introducing many to the Salesian story.

In the evening, still focusing on the centennial celebrations, Our Lady of the Rosary Parish hold a two-hour Multicultural Variety Show in keeping with the parish festivities of the veneration of the relic of Don Bosco and as a fundraiser toward part payment of the renovations of the parish church which occurred in 2022. More than 300 people are in attendance. There are piano recitals and songs and dances from people of different cultures who are parishioners of Our Lady of the Rosary Parish. There is representation from various countries: New Zealand, Samoa, Ireland, Poland, Fiji and the Philippines. Once again this was a timely way to honour the many cultures that make up Our Lady of the Rosary parish during the time the relic of Don Bosco is venerated in this parish, symbol of the many cultures in which the Salesian charism is experienced around the world.

Moreover, to honour Don Bosco, the SDB and FMA communities of St. Marys also perform during the Multicultural Variety Show. They act out again, in English, what they performed to the Vietnamese community earlier during the day. The Sisters even invite Sr. Joan Levi to join in the performance as one of the girls of the sewing room. This act was well received by everyone in the audience!


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