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23 gennaio 2022

Dear friends of ADMA,

First of all, we wish everyone a peaceful 2022. We entrust this new year to the Help of Christians, in the hope that she will help us to live it always in the light and joy that the birth of Jesus has brought to our hearts. We have just ended the season of Christmas. God has become man and manifested himself to the world. This proclamation has changed the history of humanity forever and above all it changes our humanity today: it asks us to be converted every day and to be witnesses every day of the Gospel, glorifying the Lord at all times and in every circumstance!

How do we do this? What attitudes do we need?

January is a very special month for the whole Salesian Family, first of all because we receive the Rector Major's Strenna as a gift which guides our journey, and then because we celebrate some Salesian feasts and so rediscover and revive our sense of being children of Don Bosco and of the Help of Christians - on 24 January the feast of Saint Francis de Sales whose 400th anniversary we celebrate, and then on 31 January the feast of our father Saint John Bosco. The beautiful Strenna of the Rector Major "Do everything out of love, nothing by constraint" shows us how and offers us the right attitudes. The Strenna focuses on the spirituality of St. Francis de Sales, which is the "source of the spirit of Don Bosco". It invites all of us in the Salesian Family to commit ourselves to an essential element of our charism which is to take up the path of the heart - a simple, sweet, patient, devoted heart. A heart with a deep desire for God created by God who leaves us free to correspond to his loving plan. For us in ADMA it is once again a question of following in Mary's footsteps and looking at her heart. Learn from Mary to do everything for love of God and neighbour without constraint and rediscover the sense of true devotion as taught by St. Francis de Sales: "True and living devotion, Philothea, requires the love of God, indeed it is nothing other than a true love of God, not love in a generic sense. God's love is called grace insofar as it embellishes the soul, because it makes us acceptable to the divine Majesty. It is called charity inasmuch as it gives us the strength to act well. When it has reached such a level of perfection, whereby it not only gives us the strength to act well, but makes us work carefully, often and promptly, then it is called devotion [...]. To put it briefly, devotion is a kind of spiritual agility and liveliness by which charity acts in us or we act through it, with promptness and affection."

The hope then is that in all the educational and pastoral activities in which we are involved, in our formation meetings, and in the works in which we are engaged, our devotion as ADMA members will help us to love our neighbour more and abandon ourselves more to the love of God.

Renato Valera, President ADMA Valdocco.

Alejandro Guevara, Spiritual Animator ADMA Valdocco

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