First Congress of Salesian Spirituality SF in Colombia

Bogotá (Colombia) From 15 to 18 August 2019, in the Salesian College Leo XIII, in Bogotá, Colombia, the First Salesian Spirituality Congress of the Salesian Family was held. The event was attended by 260 participants including Salesian Cooperators, Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Salesians, and members of the various groups of the Salesian Family present in Colombia. The Congress was organized by the Inter-Provincial Joint Formation Commission.

The theme of the Congress was: Saints Yes ... But Saints Together.

The main conferences were: "Biblical Dimension of Holiness" led by Fr Hernán Cardona, SDB, "Salesian Holiness Dimension" proposed by Fr Rubén Darío Jaramillo, SDB and Holiness in Mother Mazzarello, presented by Sr. María Victoria Montoya FMA.

There were two panels on the topic: How I live the Salesian charism in my context and what it means to be Saints in the Colombian context. On this occasion, numerous experiences were shared: Sandra Bernal and Carlos Lozada, SSCC of the Liceo Don Bosco Pitalito-Huila; James Areiza, who presented "Alto al fuego", Documentary of Ciudad Don Bosco of Medellín. Then it was the turn of Sister Martha Gutiérrez, HHSSCC, who presented "The sanctity of the HHSSCC Institute of Water of God" and of Sebastián Aguirre, Patio 13, Normal of Copacabana. Finally, Alicia Sánchez, FMA, Gloria Alcira Rey, Mother of the Secular Movement "Father Luis Variara", and Sebastián Aguirre, a young man from the SYM and Fanny Machado, ADS, Salesian Damas, spoke.

At the same time, there were several times of group work to generate proposals for journeys of holiness in local communities.

Another significant moment was the dialogue on the sanctity of the Founders. The Commission prepared an activity that provided for knowledge and recognition of holiness in the Salesian Family: The path to holiness. Each participating member visited a space to dwell on the biographies of the saints, blesseds, venerables, and servants of God, and see some relics.

To strengthen motivation, the participants lived a time of sharing and dialogue through an engaging and collaborative dynamic, an invitation to work together, grow, and be formed together, each contributing with their own gifts in carrying out the Salesian mission.

On the last day of the Congress, each of the seven Provinces of Colombia met with their participants and proposed three challenges to live after the Congress and then respond to the invitation to join the Salesian Family to be formed together, respond to the mission together, and do good to become saints together.

Throughout the congress the joy of Salesian sharing, acceptance, fraternity was felt, being committed to be saints ... but saints together.

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