The church celebrates the feast day of St. John Bosco on January 31.
Fr. Bosco was given the title, “Father and Teacher of Youth.”
Saint John Bosco was the youngest son to Piedmontese peasants. He studied theology at Turin. After ordination, he served the dislocated people who came from the countryside and found themselves adrift in a setting of heavy urbanization and industrialization. In 1854, in a very anti-clerical setting, he founded the Salesian Order, named after St. Francis de Sales.
It focused on creating solutions for displaced youth. He developed vocational training programs with evening classes and apprenticeships. Eventually, these grew to include schools. To help staff them, he collaborated in the founding of Daughters of Mary Help of Christians and organized an active group of lay “co-operators.” St. John Bosco was canonized in 1934. ( https://divineoffice.org/about-0131-john-bosco/ )
The dreams of St. John Bosco.
‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; yea, and on my menservants and my maidservants in those days I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.Acts 2:17-21
Quoted from theotokas.org
“Try to picture yourselves with me on the seashore, or, better still, on an outlying cliff with no other land in sight. The vast expanse of water is covered with a formidable array of ships in battle formation, prows fitted with sharp spear-like beaks capable of breaking through any defence. All are heavily armed with cannons, incendiary bombs, and firearms of all sorts – even books – and are heading toward one stately ship, mightier than them all. As they try to close in, they try to ram it, set it afire, and cripple it as much as possible.
This stately vessel is shielded by a flotilla escort. Winds and waves are with the enemy. In this midst of this endless sea, two solid columns, a short distance apart, soar high into the sky: one is surmounted by a statue of the Immaculate Virgin at whose feet a large inscription reads: Help of Christians; the other, far loftier and sturdier, supports a [Communion] Host of proportionate size and bears beneath it the inscription Salvation of believers.
The flagship commander – the Roman Pontiff [the Pope]- seeing the enemy’s fury and his auxiliary ships very grave predicament, summons his captains to a conference. However, as they discuss their strategy, a furious storm breaks out and they must return to their ships. When the storm abates, the Pope again summons his captains as the flagship keeps on its course. But the storm rages again. Standing at the helm, the Pope strains every muscle to steer his ship between the two columns from whose summits hang many anchors and strong hooks linked to chains.”The entire enemy fleet closes in to intercept and sink the flagship at all costs. They bombard it with everything they have: books and pamphlets, incendiary bombs, firearms, cannons. The battle rages ever more furious. Beaked prows ram the flagship again and again, but to no avail, as, unscathed and undaunted, it keeps on its course. At times a formidable ram splinters a gaping hole into its hull, but, immediately, a breeze from the two columns instantly seals the gash.
Meanwhile, enemy cannons blow up, firearms and beaks fall to pieces, ships crack up and sink to the bottom. In blind fury the enemy takes to hand-to-hand combat, cursing and blaspheming. Suddenly the Pope falls, seriously wounded. He is instantly helped up but, struck down a second time, dies. A shout of victory rises from the enemy and wild rejoicing sweeps their ships. But no sooner is the Pope dead than another takes his place. The captains of the auxiliary ships elected him so quickly that the news of the Pope’s death coincides with that of his successor’s election. The enemy’s self-assurance wanes.
Breaking through all resistance, the new Pope steers his ship safely between the two columns and moors it to the two columns; first to the one surmounted by the Host, and then to the other, topped by the statue of the Virgin. At this point something unexpected happens. The enemy ships panic and disperse, colliding with and scuttling each other. Some auxiliary ships which had gallantly fought alongside their flagship are the first to tie up at the two columns.
Many others, which had fearfully kept far away from the fight, stand still, cautiously waiting until the wrecked enemy ships vanish under the waves. Then, they too head for the two columns, tie up at the swinging hooks, and ride safe and tranquil beside their flagship.
A great calm now covers the sea. ” St. John Bosco
I would like to end with the thought that we really are on the precipice of the great calm that covers the seas. The Era of Peace our Mother has promised at Fatima. All Catholics, more importantly now than ever before, need to stay firm on the two pillars of our faith, the Blessed Sacrament and our Blessed Mother.