Don Bosco: father, teacher and friend

Don Bosco
Photo Credit: Instituto María Auxiliadora Neuquén

What educator means?

Educator comes from the Latin word educare.
E-ducere means to pull out. In fact, to educate is not a synonym of to teach.
It denotes a different action and it implies many more elements than just to explain what plate tectonics is or how to solve a math problem to a class of students.
Education reaches the heart of the person.

On the 31st of January an important educator is celebrated worldwide.
He is a priest too.
Don Bosco was a priest in Turin. He was born on the 16th of August and died on 31st of January 1888.
He founded the Society of Saint Francis de Sales, from which we have nowadays the Salesians.

Why so important?
During a time of great poverty in all the country and especially in Turin, an industrial city, don Bosco welcomed the youth.
In contrast with teachers’ strict attitude, he approached the weak and the poor with love and kindness.

Another way to educate

Preventive System was the pedagogical method he used.
Instead of punishing the student once he committed a mistake, the teacher should aim to prevent the trespass itself. By leading the boy towards the knowledge of the good and the evil, the educator would make him understand the correct behaviour to adopt.

There is a special point, an approachable way for every single young person. There is no exception. This belief is the starting point.

It may seem a little bit too optimistic. Nevertheless, it makes the basis for a better society.
Good Christians and honest citizens” is one of his famous quotes. The person should learn to be respectful towards other human beings. Otherwise, a deep respect towards God risks being useless. If you cannot behave properly towards who is close to you, does it make sense to pray all day long or attend Mass on Sunday?

200 years old

There has been a special feast this year in all the salesians oratories and church spread in the world. It occurs the Bi-Centenary of don Bosco’s birth.
Sacred Heart Church (inside), Battersea, London
Photo Credit: Cristiana Ferrauti
What happens during this day?
As previously mentioned, the youth was the focus of don Bosco’s whole life.
During this feast, all kind of games are prepared for children as well as for the adolescents. Adults and the rest of the family enjoy the atmosphere of joy and attend special celebrations.
At don Bosco’s time, the young audience in the oratory never went home with an empty stomach. He often offered treats and meals during these special occasions. This tradition is still in act today.

To stay together, sharing experiences, worries, and the good time: this is indeed an important ingredient for the feast.

As don Bosco often repeated, “People need to know that they are loved.”
This day is a special occasion to remind us his love lasts over the time.