Shillong 25th April: In keeping with the honorable and time-tested traditions of the Salesian Congregation, the solemn and seamless handover ceremony of the INS Shillong Province of St. John Paul II from the outgoing Provincial, Rev. Fr. Paul Olphindro Lyngkot, SDB, to the new Provincial, Rev. John Zosiama, SDB, took place at Sacred Heart Theological College, Mawlai, Shillong. The event was witnessed by hundreds of Salesian confreres, sisters, civil authorities, prominent Catholic laity, members of Salesian families, and collaborators on April 24, 2024. The ceremony commenced with a solemn concelebration High Mass, with Archbishop Victor Lyngdoh of the Shillong Archdiocese as the main celebrant, accompanied by no fewer than 100 priests representing the provinces of Guwahati, Dimapur, Hyderabad, Panaji (Goa), and a representative of the Rector Major, along with sons of Don Bosco from Salesian Houses and parishes from the Northeastern Region of India. In a heartfelt homily, Archbishop Victor recalled the yeoman service of the Salesian congregation in the Northeastern Region, spreading the Catholic faith to the farthest corners over the past hundred years. He expressed profound gratitude to the sons and daughters of Don Bosco for their tireless work in caring for the poor, the downtrodden, especially the youth and the marginalized in this part of India. A word of appreciation was extended to the outgoing provincial, Rev. Fr. Paul Olphindro Lyngkot, who remained steadfastly devoted to the Church and the propagation of the Gospel throughout his 5 years and 11 months of service as Salesian Provincial. The Archbishop also offered words of advice to the new Provincial, Rev. Fr. John Zosiama, reassuring him, "You have nothing to fear, as you have our Savior Jesus Christ as your strength, your guide, St. John Bosco as your model, and your confreres to lean on in times of need." The order of authority from the Rector Major was read before the congregation, followed by the profession of faith and obedience to the Church and the authority of the Society of St. Francis de Sales by the new incumbent Provincial, Rev. Fr. John Zosiama. After the solemn ceremony, there were farewell speeches from the outgoing Provincial, Rev. Fr. Paul O. Lyngkot, and a vision message from the newly installed provincial, Rev. Fr. John Zosiama. Different Salesian houses of formation presented short but impressive cultural programs, concluding with a delightful family dinner.

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