Writings and testimonies of don bosco on spiritual life


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Il cattolico provveduto per le pratiche di pietà con analoghe istruzioni secondo il bisogno dei tempi. Torino, Tip. dell’Oratorio di S. Franc. di Sales 1868, p. 1 (OE XIX, 9).

105 Giovanni Bosco, Cooperatori salesiani, ossia un modo pratico per giovare al buon costume ed alla civile società. San Pier d’Arena, Tipografia e Libreria di S. Vincenzo de’ Paoli 1877, pp. 4 and 27 (OE XXVIII, 342 and 365).

106 Don Bosco wrote this small work with Fr John Bonetti's help.

107 This is the first conference Don Bosco gave the Salesian Cooperators in Turin; he gave it on the afternoon of May 16, 1878, in Valdocco, in the church of St Francis de Sales (cf. MB XIII, 624-630).

108 Arch. Edoardo Giuseppe Rosaz (1830-1903), founder of the Franciscan Missionary Sisters (1874) for the education of poor and orphaned girls, was appointed bishop of Susa in the consistory on 31 December 1877.

109 Giovanni Bosco, Il mese di maggio consacrato a Maria SS. Immacolata ad uso del popolo. Torino, Tip. Paravia e Compagnia 1858 (OE X, 295-486).

110 Giovanni Bosco, Maraviglie della madre di Dio invocata sotto il titolo di Maria Ausiliatrice. Torino, Tip. Dell’Oratorio di S. Franc. di Sales 1868 (OE XX, 192-376).

111 Cf. doc. no. 41: Request to Pius IX for indulgences, promoting the setting up of the Association of Devotees of Mary Help of Christians.

112 A goodnight for the boys at the Oratory.

113 Cf Aldo Giraudo, Clero, seminario e società. Aspetti della Restaurazione religiosa a Torino. Roma, LAS 1993, pp. 177-213.

114 Ibid., pp. 245-254, 277-288.

115 This was held on 10 July 1860 in the church of St Francis de Sales, at the end of the funeral Mass celebrated seventeen days after Cafasso's death (G. Bosco, Biografia del sacerdote Giuseppe Cafasso…, p. 3). Cleric Domenico Ruffino (1840-1865) wrote in his diary: “10 July. The funeral mass for Fr Cafasso by the boys at the Oratory was held. They wanted to offer their holy communions. … At 6 ½ a sung Mass prepared and celebrated by Fr Borel began; Don Bosco said the funeral prays afterwards, in fact he read them otherwise his emotions would not have allowed him to continue. Despite this he wept copiously and what he said and his entire sermon fascinated his listeners who saw him conclude in tears. But he promised he would write up his life at length.” (ASC A0120201 Cronaca dell’Oratorio di S. Francesco di Sales N. 1, 1860, ms by Domenico Ruffino, p. 23).

116 It would be good to note here that on that day Fr Cafasso heard confessions late into the night, and since the prison gates and exits were closed, he was on the point of having to sleep there with the prisoners. But at a certain hour of the night the policemen and wardens armed with rifles, pistols and sabres came, and they started doing their usual rounds, holding tapers at the ends of some long iron rods. They were checking here and there looking for any cracks appearing on the walls or the floor, and to see if there were any plots or other disorders among the inmates. When they saw someone they did not know they began shouting: "Who goes there?" And without waiting for an answer they surrounded him and threatened him, asking him what he was doing, what he was thinking of doing there, who he was, where he wanted to go. Fr Cafasso wanted to speak but it wasn't possible because the guards were shouting: “Stop, stop!” And “Tell us who you are”. “I am Fr Cafasso.” “Fr Cafasso...! How come ... at this hour ... why didn't you leave on time? We can't let you out without reporting this to the director of prisons.” “That doesn't worry me. You can report to whoever you want to, but be careful because when nightfall comes you were supposed to come round and see who did not belong here and let them leave. This was your duty and it is your fault for not doing it.” Then they all fell silent and taking the good Fr Cafasso they begged him not to talk about what had happened. They opened the door and to ingratiate themselves further, they accompanied him down to his house (note in the original text).

117 I know of many people who because of their poor circumstances or major difficulties in the family could not take up any career. Some of those are now parish priests, assistant priests, school teachers. Some are notaries, lawyers, doctors, pharmacists, legal advisers. Others work in the country, own shops, are businessmen, and while in Fr Cafasso the lament the loss of a tender father, they give glory to truth by saying: "Fr Cafasso was our benefactor, he helped us to clothe ourselves, pay our rent, sit for our exams. He advised us, recommended us, supported us spiritually and bodily. To him we owe our honour, study, employment, the bread we eat (note in the original text).

118 The panegyric for St Philip Neri was given by Don Bosco to priests in the diocese of Alba (Cuneo), at the invitation of its bishop, bishop Eugenio Galletti in May 1868 (cf. MB II, 46-48).

119 Pietro Giacomo Bacci, Vita di S. Filippo Neri fondatore della congr. dell’Oratorio. Monza, Tipografia dell’Istituto dei Paolini 1851.

120 DB uses an archaic term to indicate the shell of grain, chaff: things of little value, of no importance.

121 Critical ed. in Giovanni Bosco, Memorie dal 1841 al 1884-5-6 a’ suoi figliuoli Salesiani. By Francesco Motto, in DBE, Scritti, pp. 391-438.

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