Saint John “Don” Bosco truly lived his life for others—especially the poor, downtrodden young men living on the streets of Turin, Italy, near where he was born.
By the mid-19th century, thousands of these boys had traveled from the rural countryside, seeking better opportunities in a newly booming industrial city. But Turin wasn’t ready for them. Inadequate housing options, and a strained social support system, meant that almost as many landed in overcrowded slums—where crime, disease and despair ran rampant. Many youth roamed the streets and were a menace to society with their unruly behavior.
Fortunately, Don Bosco was ready for them! Since the age of nine, when he’d first discerned God’s call to the priesthood, he dreamt of serving youth—and this was his chance. When Turin’s young men lacked positive role models, he offered them loving guidance. When they could not afford to go to school, he provided an education. And when they faced few prospects for long-term employment, he taught them a trade.
In fact, during his remarkable lifetime—which spanned 73 faithful and devoted years—Don Bosco transformed the hopes of thousands of marginalized youth who otherwise would have had none. He gave them the knowledge, skills and confidence they needed to become productive members of society.
He also founded a global order of Catholic priests, brothers and sisters known as the Salesians of Don Bosco. We are thrilled to share our patron saint with Panama, and honored that he has been chosen as one of eight special intercessors for World Youth Day 2019!
Read more in the link: http://wearedonbosco.org/
World Youth Day website: https://panama2019.pa/en/home/