The pastoral writings of the Religious Orders at work in the Philippines in the eighteenth century reveal the life and conditions of the ministers of religion and of the Filipino Christians in the first centuries of the work of evangelization in the Philippines.
The residence of bishops was already a key issue for the Church reform in the fifteenth century. There had been efforts, in fact, even before the Council of Trent (1545-1563), by reform-minded ecclesiastics to reform the episcopate through their pastoral writings. This paper writes about the attempts of pre-Tridentine bishop-reformers to correct the absenteeism of bishops from their dioceses and to give the reasons why they should reside in their dioceses.
Towards an inculturation of a spiritual charism is the process by which an indigenous member of a religious institute takes the initial steps to situate, describe, analyze, and compare the Gospel values of the said religious institute with the set of core values of his people. This thesis paper attempts to indicate the tangential points between the Salesian Charism and its characteristic Gospel value, the Family Spirit, with the Filipino cultural value of strong family ties. It describes the Filipino core value of kapwa, the pivotal value of pakikiramdam, expressed in its manifest values of pakikisama, hiya and utang-na-loob together with its resultant emerging Filipino profile of interpersonal relationship value-system. This is compared vis-a-vis the legacy of St. John Bosco to the members of his Congregation which is described as the Salesian Family Spirit, a network of interpersonal relationships resulting in an environment best suited for educating the young (ministry) and for living in common (fraternity).
In the light of the Second Vatican Council, the Salesian Charism signifies the gift of the Holy Spirit to St John Bosco, the founder, and eventually to his followers in the Society of St. Francis de Sales. The Salesian Spirit is how St. John Bosco responded positively and uniquely to this charismatic gift of the Spirit for the good of the Church particularly in his mission among the young. This Charism-Spirit tandem is what Vatican II properly calls as the Identity of the Religious Congregation. Since over a century has passed since this Charism-Spirit has been handed over to the next generation Salesians, the question is whether the twentieth century Salesians live up to their identity as Salesians of Don Bosco. A correct description of the Salesian Spirit is therefore in store. This paper intends to trace from the writings of the third Successor of St John Bosco, Fr. Philip Rinaldi, an apt and authentic description and interpretation of the said spirit.