For the Young
Finding our origin in the prayer of Christ “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children” (Matthew 11:25) we especially dedicate ourselves to the service of the young, journeying with them in everyday life as a sign of God’s loving presence. We believe in the gifts which young people have to offer to society – their optimism, zest for life, curiosity, intelligence, and creativity – and ask God for the grace of accompanying them in their formation into responsible citizens and faithful Catholics.
We fulfill our ministry through offering the young a variety of venues in which to discover their talents and grow in their faith – from schools and youth centers to summer camps and community outreaches, all based upon the need of the local community.
The Oratory is a particular invention of the heart of Don Bosco for young people. It provides a family environment in which the young can learn, play, relax, and grow in their understanding of their faith and themselves. It is a secure environment where the young know that they are loved and that the Sisters are there for them. For some young people having a consistent environment such as this can make all of the different in their life.
Love is the basis of the particular method of Salesian education known as the “Preventive Method”. It is based upon three principles:
- Reason which appeals to the intelligence of young people, and meets them there they are at, never putting them down or belittling them, but lifting them up and encouraging them in the full awareness of personal responsibility.
- Religion which appeals to their soul, encourages them to consider the true meaning of life and how great a gift it is, and which places faith in their naturally good nature and personal call to holiness.
- Loving-Kindness which shows itself in the particular Salesian family spirit, full of joy and confidence which can only stem from an environment of supportive and challenging love. Loving-kindness respects the dignity of the young and never appeals to aggressive or repressive methods to get results.
Thus we, the Salesian Sisters, are not only educators of the mind, but also of the heart of the young, which encompasses their entire being. The true formation of young people does not stop at the intellectual but includes the spiritual and the emotional. As sisters and mothers to the young they help lead them through the challenges of youth which we understand all too well, and are able to draw upon our own experiences to help us in their ministry.
Do you want to do a good deed? Teach the young! Do you want to perform a holy act? Teach the young! Do you want to do a holy thing? Teach the young! Truly, now and for the future, among holy things, this is the holiest. – St John Bosco