Japanese in Rome

Japanese in Rome On the morning of August 8, 22 Japanese teachers, male and female, including 3 FMA, visited the Generalate to meet Mother Yvonne Reungoat and the Sisters of the Council who were at home. They came from four large school complexes directed by the FMA in Japan: Tokyo Akabane, Chofu, Meguro, Setagaya and they were enthusiastic about their experience.  Their visit to the Generalate was part of a cultural and Salesian visit to Italy, where the group arrived at the beginning of August. The first stages took place in the land of origin of the Salesian charism: Turin, Chieri, Castelnuovo Don Bosco and Mornese. Their interest and admiration for these places, where they breathed the atmosphere of the beginnings of the Salesian work, was notable and for them completely new. They were particularly fascinated by Mornese, where they appreciated the beauty of the countryside, the broad horizons, the atmosphere of simplicity and joy that characterised their meetings with the Sisters and the people. After this, they visited some Italian cities, including Milan, Florence and Assisi. On reaching Rome, the FMA Generalate was among the first places they visited.  The Sisters present were surprised to see this group, among whom only three of the lay teachers were Catholic, spending some time in prayer and singing in the Church. They even joyfully sang  “Salve don Bosco santo” in perfect Italian! After this they were welcomed by Mother Yvonne and the Councillors, and participated enthusiastically in the dialogue. Their questions centred especially on how to put the Preventive System into practice in an environment like what they have in Japan today, one that is strongly marked by competition and that aims at excellence in everything.  Mother Yvonne offered simple, profound and convincing responses, leaving those present with a message of hope, of involvement in the educational commitment and of encouragement. A visit to the Mostra del carisma (Display of the Charism) concluded the visit of this Japanese group, which was short but very meaningful.

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