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Fr. Guillermo Basañes welcomed in Shillong, Confers Ministries
By Fr. George Maliekal SDB
Shillong, Aug. 5. Fr. Guillermo Basañes, the General Councilor of the Salesians of Don Bosco for Missions is on a visit to the province of Silchar from 2-6 August 2014. On 3 August he was given a warm welcome at Don Bosco Technical School, Shillong. Archbishop Dominic Jala, Archbishop (Emeritus) Thomas Menamaparampil, Salesian Provincials of New Delhi, Dimapur and Silchar together with a large number of Salesians and young people accorded a colourful welcome to Fr. Basañes.
Top: Fr. Basañes welcomed at Don Bosco Tech School, Shillong Bottom: Fr. Basañes with the Students of theology who received the Ministries
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The participants of 2nd Inter Regional Salesian Missionary Animation were also present at the brief but beautiful welcome function that followed. The proceedings began with a well prepared prayer service followed by Words of welcome from Fr. Philip Barjo, Rector of Don Bosco Technical School. Fr. George Maliekal, Salesian Provincial, Silchar expressed affectionate sentiments of welcome and appreciation to Fr. Basañes in the name of all the confreres and the Salesian family. Archbishop Dominic Jala reminded everyone of the holy missionary zeal of saintly pioneers like Venerable Constantine Vendrame. Shawls, bouquets, music and dances added beauty and charm to the function.

Fr. Basañes in his inspiring exhortation challenged the Salesians saying that it is the turn of the Salesians of the region ''to give their best (of confreres) to the rest of the world because the Congregation has given its best to the region in the past''.

On 4 August morning Fr. Basañes conferred Ministries of Lector and Acolyte at Sacred Heart Theological College, Shillong. 18 candidates became Lectors and 24  became Acolytes. The solemn Mass was presided over by Fr. Basañes in the recently renovated beautiful College Shrine of Sacred Heart of Jesus.  The concelebrants consisted of the Salesian Provincials of New Delhi, Dimapur and Silchar, the participants of 2nd Inter Regional Salesian Missionary Animation program and others.

During the homily Fr. Basañes exhorted the candidates to 'read the signs of the times' and to be 'simply available' to people, especially to young people in their every need. Stating that the need of the hour is not 'technical liturgist' nor 'mechanical priest' but 'Salesians with heart similar to that of Jesus the Good Shepherd', he challenged the candidates to priesthood.
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