Sunday, January 31, 2016

St. John Bosco

On January 31 the Church honors the Memorial of St. John Bosco-Friend of the Youth. He was called "Apostle of Youth" because he dedicated his life to the young people by organizing youth clubs, hostels, and boarding schools where he taught them. He founded the Salesian Society for the boys in 1854 which was named St. Francis de Sales. In 1872 he also founded the Salesian Sisters called Daughters of Mary, Help of Christians to work for girls.
St. John Bosco had no formal system or theory of education. His methods centered on persuasion, authentic religiosity, and love for young people. He was an enlightened educator and innovator. The educational philosophy of John Bosco can be condensed in three words: reason, religion, and kindness. The basic principle of his system was a deep understanding and love for young people and their problems.

Saint of the Week January 31
St. John Bosco is considered as the saint of the youth. Founder of Salesian Society, named in honor of St. Francis de Sales. His lifework was the welfare of young boys and girls, hence his title, "Apostle of Youth." His methods centered on persuasion, authentic religiosity, and love for young people. He was an enlightened educator and innovator. Pope John Paul II named him "teacher and father to the young."

At age 14, he really wanted to be a priest because he wants the youth to understand their faith. He served a priest for its morning masses and the priest taught John Bosco Latin. But the young John Bosco needed to stop his lessons with the priest because he needed to work in a farm to help their family for a living. But he did not stop dreaming of becoming a priest until one day his uncle brought him to a school where he can fulfill his dream.

Don Bosco was first and foremost a priest. Whatever priestly work needed doing and came to his hand he did, whether it was saving some poor waif off the streets of Turin or conducting delicate negotiations between the Vatican and the government for the appointment of bishops to the vacant Italian sees. So greatly in fact had the influence of this peasant priest from Becchi grown that he was called on to act as intermediary in this important matter. He consented to do so, as he told the President of the Council at Florence, solely as a priest — "Priest at the altar, priest in the confessional, priest among my boys, and priest in the king's palace or his ministers' offices: I will be nothing but a priest." ~ Lancelot C. Sheppard, Don Bosco's biographer

He is a patron saint of apprentices; boys; editors; young people; laborers; students and young people.

To know more about St. John Bosco, please click on the following links:

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