Salesians welcome relics of Don Bosco to Glenorchy
By Josh Low
To mark the centenary year since the arrival of the Salesians to Australia, the Salesians in Glenorchy this month welcomed a relic of their founder, St Don Bosco, to their community.
Visiting from 7 to 11 September, the relic – a bone from the right arm of Don Bosco, is contained within a full-sized wax replica of the saint and concealed in a large glass casket.
The relic comes from the Province of Hong Kong and has been touring Australia since July, visiting five states in total.
Rector of Dominic College and the Salesian community in Tasmania, Fr Bernie Graham SDB, said the Salesians were pleased to host the relic of their founder in Glenorchy.
“It has been well received by the many people connected with our ministry in schools, parishes, youth centres and other settings,” he said.
“We just hope and pray that the visit will further embed the Salesian Charism and the story of Don Bosco in our school and parish communities and help them appreciate the great inspiration that Don Bosco is in bringing the message of the Gospel and the Kingdom of God to young people in particular.”
Joining the Salesian community at the Glenorchy Parish on Sunday 10 September, Archbishop Julian said in his homily at Mass that saints have always played an important role in the lives of Catholics.
“As we seek to deepen our Catholic life, learning about the saints inspires us, revealing ways in which we can become more faithful members of the Church and grow in virtue and holiness.
“In a word, the lives of saints show us how we can be true disciples of Jesus and faithful members of the Church.
“Today before us we have wax replica of the saint, in which is a relic of Don Bosco. The statue enables us to visualise the saint, while the relic gives us something more: we are brought into close proximity with the saint.
“A relic is part of the physical remains of the saint or something touched by the saint. At the human level, we know that we can hold dear something – a piece of clothing or some personal item – that reminds us of a loved one who is now deceased.
“In this object we are reminded of them and we sense a closeness to them.
“So it is with relics. Beholding a relic, praying before a relic, brings us into a more immediate and personal relationship with the saint.
Archbishop Julian concluded by encouraging those present to consider a special need they have and to entrust it to St Don Bosco who was present with them in a special way.
“Take this special spiritual opportunity to engage your Catholic life with that of the wonderful saint, Don Bosco,” he concluded.