Celebrations in the Convent
The Salesian Party Never Stops!
There are many people who have a very mistaken idea of religious life. They think Sisters never have fun, never laugh and are always serious. They MIGHT even think that Sisters are boring! If you know the Salesians well, you know this is not true.
Salesians love to have fun, love to share joy, and love to party. In fact, Salesians love an excuse to celebrate. We are always happy to find some time for fun and a way to enjoy life. This is not to say that we are never serious; we are. But we know that God has given us life as a precious gift, and a gift that should be celebrated, and so we do celebrate!
All of our parties begin with the Lord in the Chapel. This was the first part of any celebration at Don Bosco's Oratory and our time with God continues to be the apex of life in our schools and houses. So feast days start with prayer.
Feast days for us are times to sing, and we even have our own little "nun band" to make these celebrations in the liturgy even more festive. We have a few Sisters who play keyboard, a violinist, a drummer, some guitars, and a trumpeter. Maybe you have some musical talent and would like to join our band of Sisters. We'd love to have you take part in our celebrations!
The biggest annual celebrations in the convent follow the Liturgical Year - Easter and Christmas are BIG! But, we have so many saints in our family, 116 and counting, that we like to celebrate for each of them as well. Then there are always birthdays and other events where we gather as a family of Sisters. We also have special days where we give thanks for the work of each Sister in our community, in our province, and in our Institute. These are another great time to be together, to thank God for one another, and to show our gratitude to our Superiors.
Throughout the year, we have gatherings for national and other holidays, like Thanksgiving, New Year's (which is a double feast because it is also the Feast of Mary, the Mother of God), Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, and Halloween, as well as many other opportunities we can find to get together and to celebrate. Each of these gatherings provides us time to decorate together, prepare a beautiful liturgy, cook and play games. All of this serves to draw us closer in community.
In addition to time spent with our Sisters, there is always some time with the young people. These moments allow us to spend some time with the young in informal settings, and, like Don Bosco said, if we learn to love what the young people love (interests, likes), they will learn to love what they initially dislike (discipline, rules, more important things in life). For the Salesians, education is about getting to know young people in their free time, and sharing their interest, so we can help them grow closer to the Lord. Kids are always interested in a party, so we try to use that as a springboard to knowing the Lord.