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28/1/2016 - RMG - Sierra Leone: a new Valdocco for the Rector Major

(ANS - Rome) - "I have decided to spend the feast of Don Bosco in another Valdocco, in the Republic of Sierra Leone." Thus begins the message that Fr Angel Fernandez Artime, the Rector Major of the Salesians, addressed to the whole Salesian Family. "In Sierra Leone, when Ebola was a lethal disease, my Salesian confreres stayed there to share with the people and with the children, the suffering and death of their loved ones."

Tomorrow 29 January, Fr Á.F. Artime leaves for Sierra Leone. This West African country has a symbolic meaning, as the name implies, "mountain of the lion". Almost in the place where the lions roared out of thirst or hunger, and where the slave trade took place in the eighteenth century, today there are thousands of young people, boys and girls, crying for the loss of their parents, for an almost inhuman reason, one that is almost incomprehensible in the 21st century: an epidemic, the Ebola outbreak.

The Rector Major will meet about 200 young people who have lost their families and are now living in two Salesian houses.

Then, on 1 February, he will continue his trip to Liberia, where he will remain until 4 February, for a number of activities with the Salesians and the Salesian Family.

From 4 to 8 February, the Rector Major will visit Ghana. At Ashaiman, he will celebrate Mass with the Salesian Family in the parish dedicated to Don Bosco and will then have a meeting with members of the Provincial Council.

That same day he will also officiate at the installation ceremony of Fr Michael Karikunnel as the new Provincial of English-speaking West Africa (AFW).

Published 28/01/2016

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