An Indian on Italian TV

ROME, Italy – An Indian Salesian formed part of a television panel discussion commenting on Pope`s Angelus message, 1st March, in the Italian television RAI-International. Fr Vijaya Bhaskar Thathireddy of Hyderabad province currently doing his doctoral studies in the Faculty of Philosophy, Salesian University Rome (UPS) teamed up with two others from the UPS Don Bosco Community Frs. Manuel Ernesto Grandja (Spain) and Besa Dieudonne` Kalumbu (Congo) along with Marianna Polsinelli, youth animator of Sora diocese, Italy.

Photo Caption: L to R: Marianna, Thathireddy, Sr Myriam, Msgr.Kasteel, Gianluigi, Dieudonne and Ernesto in the RAI studio.

Photo Caption: L to R: Marianna, Thathireddy, Sr Myriam, Msgr.Kasteel, Gianluigi, Dieudonne and Ernesto in the RAI studio.

The panelists shared the meaning of lent and fasting in the different parts of the world, including India, Europe and Africa. While Fr Ernesto responded to the question of fast for Salesians and the youth they serve, Fr Dieudonne` explained the meaning of Christian charity in the context of Africa.

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Fr Thathireddy spoke of the intercultural context of fasting and its significance in India tracing back to the concept of fasting, upa-vasa (upa= `near`, vasa = `to live`). Meaning, living close to God and to the fellow beings, hence solidarity with the persecuted Christians.

The youth animator Marianna shared her experience of the young people`s attitude towards Lent and fasting.

Monsignor Karel Kasteel, Secretary General of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, presided over the Cristianita` (Christianity), RAI-International television`s premiere religion and culture programme. Sister Myriam Castelli anchored the 40-minute live-programme broadcasted, Sunday 1 March 2009 noon (11:50 to 12:30) Italy time.

During the programme a young singer of the sacred music Mr. Gianluigi Serapiglia sang a song in keeping with the pope`s Angelus message and Lent.

Cristianita` proposes and comments on the Pope`s Angelus message addressed to the faithful gathered in St. Peter`s Square, Rome. Author and presenter of the program Sr Myriam engages various experts and guests chosen from prelates, professionals and artists to comment live from the RAI studio linking the pope`s message. Sr Myriam a journalist nun belongs to the Daughters of St Paul congregation is well known and loved by millions of Italians living abroad.

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