"SACRED HEART" GENERAL HOUSE 1959
Address: Vicolo Ciaccia 29 - 00019
Location: Tivoli ROME | Italy
The Salesian Oblates of the Sacred Heart were founded on 8 December 1933 in the tiny diocese of Bova (RC) on the Aspromonte by Msgr. Giuseppe Cognata, then bishop of that diocese, true and passionate son of Don Bosco and faithful disciple of Saint Francis de Sales, of whom he followed the pastoral zeal, spirituality, doctrine, optimism. The diocese of Bova at the time was the poorest and most difficult. The houses scattered and perched in the mountains were inhabited by poor peasants who worked the land with great difficulty.
The country was devoid of means of communication and natural resources. Kindergartens were missing and the children, not looked after by their mothers because they were forced to work the land too, were left to themselves amidst so many hardships and dangers. Due to the scarcity of the clergy, the population lived without sacraments and without spiritual help.
The young bishop, immediately realizing the situation, tried to meet the material and spiritual needs of the portion of the Church entrusted to him by asking for help from some women's religious institutes to meet the need for that poor abandoned childhood, but nobody accepted. Pope Pius XI, to whom he had exposed the situation in which the diocese was facing, urged him to do it himself. After much praying, consulting with the archbishop of Reggio Msgr. Carmelo Pujìa, for the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, just six months after his arrival in the diocese, Msgr. Sister in law began the work with three young people willing to give themselves to the Lord. The three young women were called Grazia Anastasi, Caterina Ptizalis, Antonietta Morano. Thus was born the Institute of the Salesian Oblates of the Sacred Heart.
The enthusiasm of the three young women, who set an example of joyful charity and exquisite hospitality to those who approached her, won the hearts of many other girls and soon the new foundation grew and multiplied. There were also many new requests from other parish priests and so the Institute began to extend between the diocese of Bova and that of Reggio Calabria.
In 1935 the novitiate opened in Bova Marina and on the eighth of December of the same year the first professions took place while the new Institute continued to extend into Calabria and landed in Sicily, Lazio and Casal Bruciato in Rome, which will be closed after two years and it will be the thorn in the heart of the founder. The primary task of the sisters was the Christian education of children and youth with the establishment of kindergartens, workshops and oratories; they also assisted the parish priests in catechesis. In addition to the spiritual care, they took care of human promotion by civilizing the populations of the surroundings.
In July 1952 the novitiate from Bova was transferred to Tivoli and the post of mother teacher passed to Sr Bice Giuseppina Carini. As the Institute established itself also in other regions, in May 1951 a vicar was elected, chosen this time among the Oblates: Sr Maria Ausilio Rech. On 5 June 1959, the feast of the Sacred Heart, the pious society of the Salesian Oblates of the Sacred Heart became a religious Congregation and in October there was the 1st Chapter in which Sister Bice Giuseppina Carini was elected mother general. The role of novice teacher was entrusted to Sister Pia Maria Badulati. On December 26, 1962 by decree of the President of the Republic the Congregation obtained the recognition of legal personality; in the same year, for the interest of Msgr. Antonio Mistrorigo, bishop of Treviso, the holy Father Giovanni XXIII reintegrated in the episcopate mons. Sister in law; on 17 January 1964 the apostolic visit came to an end and in 1965 the founder was able to return to his daughters. The General Chapters of 1965, 1971, 1977, 1983 followed and they confirmed Mother Carini as confirmed general. On January 28, 1972 with a decree of praise the Congregation became of pontifical right. On 22 July of the same year in Pellaro (RC) the founder, suffering from a heart attack, returned to the home of the Father. In 1983 the Holy See definitively approved the renewed Constitutions. On 14 October 1985, the centenary of the birth of Msgr. Sister-in-law, at the invitation of Don Tito Solari sdb, then inspector in Bolivia (now bishop of Cochabamba), the Congregation opened to the "missio ad gentes" by sending four sisters to that land of Latin America in Puerto Acosta. There, too, the work of the Salesian Oblates began to arouse enthusiasm and vocations, so much so that on 19 March 1987 the novitiate was inaugurated in Cochabamba. Within a few years the presence of the Oblates extended to other places. In July 1989 Sr. Carmelina Francesca Mosca was elected mother general, who will be re-elected in 1995 and again in 2001 and 2006. On December 29 2001 mother Bice Carini dies. Since July 2013, the new Mother is Sr Graziella Maria Benghini.