10 Jan 2019
Salesian Family at SEEK 2019
Story and pictures by Fr. Dominic Tran, SDB
(New Rochelle, N.Y. – January 8) – Members of the four Salesian provinces of the FMAs and SDBs of Canada and USA, 17 men and women in all (see group photo), participated in the 2019 SEEK Conference in Indianapolis, January 3-7.
The conference was organized and hosted by FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students). The participants came from all over the U.S. as well as from Austria, Canada, England, and Ireland. Some high school seniors also participated. Altogether, 17,000 young people shared the days worshiping, learning, and deepening their faith and renewing their relationship with God and with fellow young Catholics.
It was beautiful to witness thousands of young people full of energy and excitement for their faith. They lived their friendship with God in moving expressions. One telling detail was the number of young adults who sought the gift of forgiveness through sacramental Reconciliation. Confessions after the organized penance service lasted over three hours, ending around midnight. Afterwards, a group of us priests estimated that 5,000 to 6,000 young people had gone to confession. In addition, the confession line appeared to be hundreds deep whenever the confession room was open before and after the day of the penance service.
The Salesian booth was quite popular (see booth photo) with crowds of youths often spilling into the hall. It was a version of the oratory where young people could make rosary bracelets, pray with us, play games, share their stories, listen to ours, and learn about Don Bosco and his love for God, Mary Help of Christians, and young people. Great laughter was heard as Salesians and young people interacted.
The FMA and SDB teams pray that some of these young people continue to discern the possibility that God might call them to be disciples of Jesus in the Salesian Family, and we invite readers of Salesian News to join our prayer.