Rome (Italy). A meeting of the ACSSA Presidency (Association of the Curators of Salesian History) took place on May 1st in Rome, Via della Pisana in preparation for the 6th World Congress on the History of Salesian Works.
Participating in the meeting were: the President, Sr. Grazia Loparco, FMA; Sr. Maria Maul, FMA; Fr. Nestor Impelido, SDB; and Fr. Stanisław Zimniak, SDB, Secretary and Treasurer.
The focus of the gathering of the ACSSA Presidency was preparation for the 6th World Congress of the History of Salesian Works, which goes back to 2011. A very interesting theme was proposed: The perception of the figure of Don Bosco in the regions where Salesian Works are inserted on the part of the surroundings and the persons who are not SDB or FMA from 1879 to 1965, though not beyond the 900’s. This theme has not as yet been dealt with systematically. Therefore, the ACSSA Presidency felt that the congress could be an invitation to a new direction for inquiry, useful for reflections that are timely on the image of Don Bosco that is promoted in the world.
For the examination of the Presidency, the Secretary, Fr. Stanislaw Zimniak, presented thirty-six arguments, with integrations by Sr. Grazia Loparco for FMA research. The respective scholars furnished indexes and syntheses inherent to the research they have been conducting for some time. All was analyzed by the Presidency with the aim of proving its correctness and conformity with the Congress theme and, if necessary, to intervene with some suggestions, observations, indications, etc. Thus, it deals with one of the most important phases of interchange in the elaboration of the definitive work.
On the basis of the material received – contributions of 17 SDB, 16 FMA, 3 lay persons, and 1 CDB – could be seen a consistent response on various aspects that highlight the reception of the image of Don Bosco in the various religious, cultural, and political contexts, beginning with the national bilingual press, from pedagogy to religious institutes, from art to theatre. Although in different measures and scientific consistency, all the continents are represented.
Turin-Valdocco was chosen as the site for carrying out this historic appointment, since it is the cradle of the Salesian apostolate and formation in favour of the world of youth, and where it officially began on April 12, 1846 by the Father of the Salesian Family, St. John Bosco. The Congress will take place From October 28 to November 1, 2015.
The event also brings another important commitment for the future of the Association of the Curators of Salesian History, which is the preparation of the General Assembly and the renewal of the Council. The actual Council has reflected, first of all, on the modality for the elections that would insure a world presence in the Association Presidency, favouring rapports with the national sections. Secondly, they drafted a grid of themes for study and research for the next five years (2016-2020), to submit for the consideration of the Assembly. Finally, they took into consideration the revision of the actual Statutes in which, among other things, the autonomy of the national sections of the Association must be defined.
They then reflected on the activities of the local sections of ACSSA, that is, of Spain, Italy, Poland, and Brazil. The birth of the section for the region of South Asia open to all the Salesian Family was also noted. The Presidency also received the proposal from Argentina to proceed with the foundation of the national section during the Congress that will take place on May 11-13, 2015 at Bahìa Blanca.
The Presidency admitted four new members: Sr. Carmelina Maria Coniglione, FMA (ISI–Italy); Sr. Gladys Marina Díaz Rodríguez, FMA (CMM–Colombia); Fr. Pedro Pereira Borges, SDB (BCG–Brazil); Fr. Kamil Pozorski, SDB (ICC–Italy). In addition, it nominated Msgr. Teixeira Cesar José Valmor, SDB and Fr. Carrara Alfredo, SDB as Honorary Members of the Association. This nomination is in recognition of their contribution in various measures to historical knowledge and guarding of the patrimony of Salesian culture.