26th September 2021, Don Bosco Parish, Nashik
It was at around 3:30 pm that we, the Salesian Sisters and Fathers and the youth, gathered round Abraham’s Tent, pitched at Don Bosco Parish, Nashik to celebrate our oneness with Mother Earth. We started the proceedings with some ice-breakers conducted by the Salesian Brothers of the Divyadaan Institute of Philosophy, to help us get acquainted with one another. After a short while, we were introduced to the main programme of the day by Fr. Leon Rodrigues. A short address introducing the theme of the day was read by a youngster Vivek Monti. We then took a pledge to honour our Mother Earth and placed plants and a Globe in Abraham’s Tent, symbolizing our intent to work on our broken relationship with the Earth.
We then proceeded to the Salesian Novitiate for a “Forest Bathing” experience which was conducted by Sr. Jaya Pedthala and Fr. Leon Rodriques – a meditation meant to renew our bond with Mother Earth. It was an enriching and memorable experience. We were asked to come into the presence of Nature and to lock ourselves away from the noisy ambient of city life. We were invited to use our senses so as to deepen our oneness with nature. After a while, we concluded our mediation with a commitment led by Fr. Clarence Martis. We committed ourselves to work on the personal level as well as that of society. This was followed by the Holy Eucharist. Fr. Ashley Miranda sdb, the Vice Provincial of the Mumbai Province, was the main celebrant of the day. He spoke about the absence of relationship or the gap that exists between humanity and nature. He made us conscious of the ugliness of such disconnections that would lead us to doom and destruction.
We ended our programme with an enjoyable session of creation games which aimed at increasing our love for nature. The games were conducted on the Don Bosco parish turf by Sr. Vaneeta Khristi and Sr. Jesmine Fernandes along with the Salesian brothers. Fr Roshan Gonsalves and Fr. Mavron Fernandes. The day concluded with happy moments spent with Mother Earth.