Tuesday, April 5, 2011
St. John Bosco in China
Don Bosco, whose name adorns over 2032 educational institutions and who has 16,385 Salesian followers all over the world, was a visionary - not merely metaphorically speaking, but literally. He had visions that, in his humility, he called 'dreams'. He himself has said that he never took a step, never initiated a project, unless he had been directed by heaven to do so.
On the night of 9th April 1886, two years before his death, Don Bosco had a dream in which he saw the future expansion of his work for youth. He saw himself surrounded by an immense crowd of youngsters. A shepherdess, the same he had seen in a dream at the age of nine, appeared and asked him to look to his left and read what he saw. He saw a mountain and a sea and then hills and then again further mountains and seas and read the words VALPARAISO and SANTIAGO. The shepherdess then asked him to look to his right, and he saw mountains and seas and read the word PEKING. He then saw a brilliant streak of light starting from Peking and
ending in Santiago, passing through the heart of Africa. And then, there appeared from Santiago to Central Africa ten Don Bosco Institutions. A little later there appeared from Central Africa to Peking ten other institutions. Over these he read the names of three great cities - Hong Kong, CALCUTTA, and Madagascar.
"How am I going to do all these" Don Bosco asked. "The distances are so immense and I have so few men to help me".
"Do not be afraid"! The shepherdess assured Don Bosco. This will be accomplished by your followers and the followers of your followers and their followers".