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[Behind the Rector Fr. Olivio Miranda [1933-2019] is Br. Ariosto.]


The Rev. Dr. Ariosto Coelho considers himself privileged to have studied [62-67] and

 taught as a Practical Trainee [70-72] at Don Bosco High School in Lonavla [DBL].

Fr. Coelho was the FIRST alumnus of DBL to lead as a Salesian and a Priest:

Rector in Sulcorna, Goa [1981-87], Councilor of the Bombay Province [82-88]


[COMING SOON AriosToons [Coelho 2021]


 0. With 6 Salesians and 30 aspirants from Bombay, Goa and Kerala: Dedication

1. With Don Bosco at the Nazir Bungalow, Lonavla, Maharashtra, India

2. A First Mass at the Shrine to Don Bosco's Madonna in Matunga, Bombay: June 1962

3. 2 future Provincials of Portugal visit the aspirants, especially those from Goa: July 1962

4. Sodalities or Leadership Training on the feast day of Mary's Assumption: August 1962

5. When the sun shines we work outdoors, go on walks and picnics: September 1962

6. A picnic to the Walvan hydro-electric project, dam and gardens: October 1962

7. Exercises for a Happy Death and the first spiritual retreat: November 1962

8. My first Christmas away from home in Aquem, Goa: December 1962





for the Leaders of Today and Tomorrow


            As I look back on life at Don Bosco in Lonavla I can think of a number of experiences especially with the Salesians and the students who were a part of my life.  It is amazing that through the Facebook and WhatsAp I am able to connect with some of my colleagues and students. Whenever I visit India I meet many of my fellow past pupils or students from Lonavla who have accepted leadership positions. Among these I’d like to include my namesake and pupil Fr. Ivo Coelho.

            In 2015 Fr. Ivo Coelho was chosen and in 2020 re-appointed Councilor General for Salesian Formation. He is among the top three leaders at Direzione Opere Don Bosco in Rome. I am proud of him and his accomplishments. I am not sure if my teaching him Geometry in 1971-72 had anything to do with it. J

            I am not at all surprised to learn that Fr. Ivo Coelho is in charge of the training to prayer life of the Salesians, their institutions and students spread throughout the world. Like me, he probably acquired this interest, attitude and taste for prayer both at home and in Lonavla. Permit me to share with you a few prayers I learned in Lonavla from saints of yesterday for leaders of today and tomorrow.


"Life of Prayer Then and Now: Lessons I learned in the 1960s"

A Reflection by Fr. Ariosto Coelho, Ph.D.


Lonavla Pre-Univerity students in Mawlai, Assam. 1967.

 In April 1960, when I decided to join a residential seminary, I  accompanied my mother to meet the Rector Fr. José Carreño at Liceu Dom Bosco in Pangim, Goa, Estado da India Portuguêsa. This Salesian Priest of  Spanish origin told me in Portuguese, "Here with Don Bosco, we eat well, play well, study well, pray well and sleep well." Then he led us to Fr. Cajetan Lobo, the Administrator of Goan origin, who very humorously declared in Portuguese "I am a wolf [Lobo] and you a rabbit [Coelho]. I'll eat you up." All of us laughed. Thus began my journey to life with the Salesians of Don Bosco. I was nine years old. After the Portuguese de facto withdrew from Goa on December 19, 1961 I opted to study at Don Bosco Apostolic High School in Lonavla. In June 1962 I was among the first four students from Goa, the youngest and the only one who changed the medium of education and prayer from Portuguese to English.


The Salesians of Don Bosco at Lonavla, especially the Rectors Fr. J. Murphy [1962-4], Fr. M. Casarotti [1964], Fr. A. Alessi [1964-7] and Fr. O. Miranda [1967-73], insisted that the aspirants to Religious Life and the Priesthood participated in the daily Mass and Rosary and made frequent visits to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. During these visits to the Church, along with many other aspirants I prayed to the Holy Spirit. Among the prayers I learned to recite, memorize and live by, I'd like to include:


Br. Coelho with 9th grade students in Lonavla. 1971.

The Peace Prayer attributed to St. Francis of Assisi

              [at the heart of Franciscan Spirituality]

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.

Where there is hatred, let me sow love;

where there is injury, pardon;

where there is doubt, faith;

where there is despair, hope;

where there is darkness, light;

 where there is sadness, joy.

O, Divine Master,

grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;

to be understood as to understand;

to be loved as to love;

For it is in giving that we receive;

it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.


Fr. Coelho participating in the Provincial Chapter in Lonavla. 1985.

Dearest Jesus attributed to St. Ignatius of Loyola

              [at the heart of Ignatian Spirituality]

Dearest Jesus, teach me to be generous,
teach me to serve you as I should,
to give and not to count the cost,
to fight and not to heed the wounds,
to toil and not to seek for rest,
to labour and ask not for reward,
save that of knowing that I do your most holy will.


Memorare to Mary attributed to St. Bernard of Clairvaux

              [an expression of Cistercian Spirituality]

Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession was left unaided. Inspired with this confidence, I fly to thee, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother; to thee do I come; before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me. Amen.



Memorare to St. Joseph attributed to St. Teresa of Avila

              [an expression of Carmelite Spirituality]

Remember, O most illustrious Patriarch St. Joseph, never has it been heard that anyone who invoked thy protection or sought thy mediation has not obtained relief.  In this confidence I come before thee, my loving protector, chaste spouse of Mary, foster-father of the Savior of men and dispenser of the treasures of His Sacred Heart. Despise not my earnest prayer, but graciously hear and obtain my petition.  Amen. St. Joseph, Patron of a Happy Death, pray for us.


Fr. Coelho studied Salesian Prayer while at UPS in Rome. 1987-89.

Prayer of Surrender by St. Therese of Lisieux

              [Spirituality of the Simple Way]

"You do not ask great things from me,

only surrender and gratitude."


Prayer and Motto of St. John Bosco

              [at the heart of DB's Salesian Spirituality]

"Give me souls and take away the rest."


A Promise made by St. Dominic Savio

              [at the heart of the Preventive System of DB]

"I prefer to die rather than offend God."


Prayer for Guidance by Bl. Teresa of Calcutta

              [at the heart of the Missionary Spirituality]

"Guide me, as You will. Use me, when You will."


A Centering Prayer taught by Fr. Cajetan Lobo

              [at the heart of Eucharistic Spirituality]

"White Host, make me pure

Round Host, make me charitable

Docile [up and down] Host, make me obedient

Cross on the Host, make me sacrificing."


Life as Prayer according to Fr. José Carreño

             [Spirituality for the Contemporary Soul]


with Don Bosco,

we eat well,

play well,

study [work] well,

pray well, and

sleep well."

Fr. Coelho researched Prayer, Art and Psychotherapy in California. 1989-97.

My Mandala: An Integral Prayer

[at the heart of Integral Spirituality]

Over the years

I am integrating the prayers above and learning

to translate God's Word like St. Jerome of Bethlehem

into prayer and action according to the rule of St. Benedict of Norcia

with mindful silence in the traditions of Buddha, Kabir and Gandhi

with loving compassion as lived by St. Frances of Sales, Ven. Agnelo Souza

with the zeal for souls shown by St. Francis Xavier, St. Joseph Vaz, and

with youthful joy as communicated by St. John Bosco to St. Dominic Savio.


Today, my life unfolds and enfolds as

White, round, docile, sacrificing Fragrance

Tiny, tranquil, transient, transparent Radiance

Shiny, soulful, silent Sacrament of Abundance

Gracefully and gratefully with Your Guidance


Awaken in me the beginner's Innocence

Balance our imperfections with Perfection

Center our past and future with Your Presence

Delight in me on Earth reflecting Your Intention


Witnessing the explosion of birth and death

In every moment: a mirror of compassion

Infinity, Intimacy and Integrity In-harmony

I am all: what is, what was, what will be

The Mirror of Wholeness

A Mandala of Recognition


What is Integral Prayer?

            [Spirituality for the Breathing Soul]

"Very simply I define prayer as breathing with attention and intention.

As I breathe gracefully, gratefully, peacefully and playfully with the Holy Spirit

I surrender myself and everyone to God's Holy Breath - The Infinite Power of Love."

Ariosto Coelho






Life in the First Years as an Aspirant to the Priesthood

Autobiographical Stories by Ariosto Coelho


1962 - Nazir Bungalow: A haven with "the saint of gladness"


            On February 8, 2011, my wife and I were invited to visit the Don Bosco Complex in Lonavla.  We enjoyed the company of Fr. Cletus D'Souza, the Rector, Fr. Salvador De Souza, Bro. Savio D'Mello, Fr. Lorenzo D'souza, other Salesians and students, and were treated to a sumptuous lunch by Fr. Thomas Chalissery. In the Superiors’ Refectory a white card on the notice board caught my attention. It stated:  "Fr. John Med died on January 25, 2011." I closed my eyes, whispered a prayer for his soul and recalled my first encounter with Fr. Med at Dom [Portuguese for Don] Bosco, Pangim, in Goa, in June 1962.  He was the Provincial Superior of the Salesian Province of South India with headquarters in Madras, and I was eleven years old.


             As a result of the Portuguese de facto withdrawal from Goa, Estado da India Portuguêsa, on December 19, 1961, I had to make a decision which would affect the rest of my life.  Shall I continue as a seminarian to the priesthood by studying Liceu Português and going to Portugal, or shall I change the medium of my education to English and study in Lonavla?  While both my Dad and I were excited by the possibility that I would live in Europe, my mother could not bear the thought of having me so far away in Portugal.


             Fr. John Med along with Fr. Manuel Pinho, Rector of Dom Bosco in Pangim which was part of the Portuguese Province of the Salesians from 1960 to 1962, decided that Pedro Pereira, Mathias Vaz, Felizberto Gracias -three ninth grade students- and I -an eighth grade student promoted after studying for the Segundo Ano do Liceu- would go to study at Don Bosco Apostolic High School in Lonavla. Fr. Edward Corcoran was to accompany us from Pangim in Goa to Lonavla in Maharashtra on June 14, 1962.


             The 24 hour journey by meter gauge train in an unreserved and overcrowded compartment from coastal Vasco da Gama Railway Station to Londa on the Deccan Plateau and, thence, to Poona was anything but comfortable. On seeing our dismal plight at Poona Railway Junction Fr. Corcoran decided that we should all go by the Deccan Queen to visit the city of Bombay located about 200 kilometers away on the Arabian Sea before settling in Lonavla on the Western Ghats, located 60 kilometers from Poona.


             Fr. Hubert D'Rosario, the Rector, the other Salesians at Don Bosco High School and Boarding, and Fr. Aurelio Maschio at the Shrine to Don Bosco's Madonna, all in Matunga, Bombay, made sure that Felizberto, Pedro, Mathias and I had a great time. I recall sleeping all night under an electric fan for the first time in my eleven years of  life. After a brief stay in Matunga, Fr. Mondini, the administrator, along with Fr. Corcoran and my elder brother Valentim, who lived in Bombay at that time, accompanied us to Lonavla by bus on Sunday June 17.


             As I recall the navy blue Tata school bus drive away from Don Bosco High School in Matunga at 9:30 in the morning I remember the broad and crowded city boulevards and the lonely mountainous climb from Karjat through Khapoli and Khandala. I remember Felizberto distribute delicious batata vadas or warm spicy potato dumplings fried in peanut oil. I also remember how Pedro said that he could smell nautang, a local alcoholic beverage, after the driver and the conductor of the bus took a few quick shots as we entered one of the many tunnels.  Mathias was delighted as he watched the clouds dance through the Duke's Nose, a mountain peak on the Western Ghats. It was a tedious but refreshing journey. It rained that Sunday afternoon when we finally reached the Nazir Bungalow in Lonavla.


             We were warmly welcomed by Fr. Joseph Murphy, the Rector, Fr. Eliseo Bianchi, the Administrator, Fr. Joseph Dhyrianathan, the Principal, Br. M. O. Matthew, Br. John Samala, the ubiquitous driver Anthony D'Souza, the rotund chef John Branganza  and the following young seminarians from Bombay: Philip Adrianwala, Claudius Alvares, Nelson Carvalho, Wilkie Correa, Mariano D'Costa, Carl D'Sa, Desmond Fernandes, Suresh Lobo, Stephen Rodrigues and Neville Sequeira. A few days later we were joined by the seminarians from Kerala: Devassy Chirakel, Thomas Chacko, Justin Thomas, Vincent Kaiparaban, Kurian Katticaren, George K. J., Thomas K. J., Thomas K. M., Cyriac Mathew, Johnny Pachikara, Joseph Pandicherry, Emmanuel Plumoothil, Emmanuel Poovelikal, Davies V. L., and Louis Zacharias. Still a few weeks later, Fr. Jos Menezes joined the team of superiors and Eusebio Mascarenhas became the thirtieth seminarian at Lonavla. I was privileged to be the number one on the Dhobi or Laundry List, in the Register and the Account Book.


              Felizberto, Mathias, Pedro and I were delighted that Fr. Manuel Pinho and Fr. Edoardo Duarte, who were on their way back to Portugal, visited us at the Nazir Bungalow in Lonavla when it rained cats and dogs. In their company we recalled the times we spent at Dom Bosco in Pangim, Goa. We remembered our companions, teachers and the international team of superiors: Fr. Corcoran [England], Fr. Lobo [Goa], Fr. Moja [Italy], Fr. Mariotta [Switzerland], Fr. Casti [Italy], Fr. Saldanha [Goa], Br. Cusini [Italy], Br. Locatelli [Italy], Br. Caserta [Italy], Br. Albano [Goa], Br. Basilio [Portugal], Br. Jose Maria [Goa], Br. Tavares [Goa], Br. Po [Goa] and Br. Chouri [India]. I also remembered what Fr. José Carreño [Spain] told me in Portuguese in April 1960, when I first considered joining Dom Bosco Liceu as a Latinista in Pangim, "Here with Don Bosco, we eat well, play well, study well, pray well and sleep well."



[L-R] Pedro Pereira, Mathias Vaz, Ariosto Coelho and Felizberto Gracias

[Top] with Fr. Manuel Pinho, Fr. Eduardo Duarte

 at the entrance to the Nazir Bungalow in Lonavla, 1962.





1963 - At a loss for words after learning English, Hindi and Marathi


            It was the middle of April 1963 and we were on our way back to Goa. After spending ten uninterrupted months eating, playing, studying, praying and sleeping well with the Salesians of Don Bosco at the Nazir Bungalow, the journey back home was as eventful as the journey to Lonavla. Once again the Salesian superiors in-charge of us had forgotten to make the reservations by train. Mr. Anthony D'Souza was in-charge of driving Felizberto, Pedro, Mathias and me to the Poona Railway Junction and accommodating us in the over-night train bound for Margao via Londa.


            When the meter-gauze train bound for Goa whistled loudly as it left the yard for the station, it was four in the evening. Hundreds of passengers without reservation rushed with their belongings to enter the unreserved compartment, all at the same time trying the enter the crowded belly of the serpent-like monster. As Felizberto, Pedro and Mathias squeezed themselves into whatever space was available in the compartment meant to accommodate 75 passengers now filled with over 150 men, women and children, I began to grow anxious. I was beginning  to wonder if I would be left behind, when Mr. D'Souza grabbed me, lifted me up, pushed me through a narrow window on one side of the railway compartment and made me sit in a tiny space left vacant on the luggage rack. I remained seated there throughout the night holding on to a package of food carefully packed for the four of us. It contained bread, bananas, a dozen full boiled eggs and Lonavla chikki, a delicious and jaw-breaking brittle candy made with nuts and sugar.


            The following evening I was at home in Aquem, two kilometers away from the railway station in Margao. I was profusely hugged by my parents, five sisters and younger brother. I recall my helplessness as I tried to express myself. I was at a loss for words in Konkani and Portuguese, the languages we spoke at home.  During the ten months I spent in Lonavla I learned to read, write and speak with some fluency in English, and with much lesser competency in Marathi and Hindi. I recall that the only language that accompanied me from Liceu Português to the English medium High School was Latin. Though this language was useful to serve at the pre-Vatican II liturgy at St. Joseph's Convent Chapel in Aquem, it was useless for communicating at home.


             As the days turned into weeks, I regained my competency in Portuguese. Now, I was able to describe some of the challenges I faced at the Nazir Bungalow in Lonavla. My sister Avita had a great laugh when I mentioned to her  that I could not pronounce the word "who" and that every time I said the Lord's Prayer, my companions laughed because I said "Our Father, foo art in Heaven." My sister Angela was amazed that I could read and write in the Devanagiri script, but she did not know that I had to plead with and convince Mr. Sonavne, the Hindi and Marathi teacher who, goaded on by Philip Adrianwala and Neville Sequeira, would not believe me when I told him that I had never been exposed to this alphabet during my earlier grades at the Liceu in Pangim. Both afraid and ashamed I had to fall on my knees and with folded hands ask Mr. Sonavne to listen to me, while my four eight-grade companions from Bombay laughed heartily.


            What interested my nine year old brother Rosarito were the games we played in Lonavla. He wondered why Devassy Chirakel was called "The Electric Server." I mentioned to him that his service was so fast while playing Table Tennis, that he acquired the title "Lightening Speed." I could not fully explain to my brother the game called Arabian Flag that we played often at the Nazir Bungalow, especially when we did not have access to the bigger playground to play football with Fr. Joseph Murphy as the coach. Still, I would describe to him the clever tricks used by Suresh Lobo, a fast runner, to steal the flag guarded by Kurian Katticaren and Joseph Pandicherry. My brother found it fascinating that the two Indian Salesian priests with us in Lonavla, Fr. Joe Dhyrianathan and Fr. Jos Menezes, tucked their white cassocks by pulling them through the pockets as they showed us how to play cricket, a game unknown in Portuguese Goa.


            My Dad was happy to hear that on Thursdays we did not have classes but spent the morning time studying. I also told him that on Thursday afternoons when it did not rain, we walked to and did manual work for three hours at the Don Bosco hilly forest property located on the Tungarli Lake Road where the Salesians were building the High School and the Residential Complex. Both Br. M. O. Matthew and Br. John Samala, who was in-charge of the seminarians in the Second of two groups to which I belonged,  made sure that we cleared the forest paths as well as leveled the playing fields of the future. Oftentimes, we had fun catching the many tiny crabs that had burrowed holes in the open spaces during the extensive rainy season. On our return to the Nazir Bungalow after negotiating the canal carrying water from the Valvan Dam to the Khapoli hydro-electric power plant at the foothills of the Sahyadri mountain range, we were treated to tea with fragrant bondas, sweet dumplings made of wheat flower deep-fried in oil.


            My Mom along with my sisters Terezinha, Maria Josefa and Sylvia, who liked traveling, enjoyed the stories as I described the picnics and walks to places of interest in and around Lonavla. The name Lonavla, I informed them, is derived from the Sanskrit lonavli, which refers to the many Buddhist caves like Karla, Bhaja and Bedsa that are close to Lonavla. Under the guidance of Fr. Bianchi we walked to these caves as well as to the various lakes and dams in the vicinity of Nazir Bungalow. Our first monthly walking picnic was to Tungarli Lake and Dam, a few kilometers away. We climbed the mountain top and crossed the dam built during the British era. During the other picnics we walked across the Monsoon Lake, the Bushi Dam and the Valvan Dam which was open to the general public prior to the start of the month long Sino-Indian war in October 1962. Other points of interest that were challenging to reach included the Duke's Nose, a cliff named after the Duke of Wellington whose ample nose it resembles; the Tiger's Leap, a cliff-top with a sheer drop of over 650 meters, giving an extensive view of the valley; and the Lohagad fort built by Chatrapati Shivaji at an elevation of 3,450 feet and recaptured by him in 1670 and used for keeping his treasury.




1964 - The first ONE hundred residents


            In June 1963 I was promoted to the ninth grade along with my other thirteen classmates from Bombay and Kerala. A few new students including Mario Vaz from Bombay, Orlando Noronha and Bosco Araujo from Goa and William Falcao from Bassein joined us in the ninth grade. A whole new batch of students was admitted into the eighth grade, among them Viren Coutts and Z. de Souza from Bombay; Joe Braganza and Thomas Dias from Goa; Anaclete de Mello, Nelson Falcao, Charles Falcao and Adolph Furtado from Bassein. Most of the aspirants or seminarians to the priesthood from Bassein had their earlier education in the Marathi medium and played cricket well.


            During the second year that we spent at the Nazir Bungalow the number of residential seminarians had grown from 30 to 60. Every available nook and corner of the small bungalow was transformed into a dormitory, classroom, dining room or office space. The place was crowded. Luckily, our stay at the Nazir Bungalow lasted till the middle of March 1964 when we moved to the new building on the Tungarli Road.


            The process of moving was well orchestrated by the six Salesians on the staff. We spent March 16, 17 and 18 moving the furniture as well as our luggage. Dutifully we transported whatever article was handed to us. I remember how on March 18, Viren Coutts and Emmanuel Plumoothil were especially chosen by Fr. Joe Dhyrianathan to transport the piece of thick glass 60" x 30" that lay on top of his wooden desk. These two young teenagers handled this responsibility  with utmost care carrying this burden through the back door of the Nazir Bungalow, climbing both over and under the water canal, walking over a kilometer through private properties and on public roads and, finally, entering the new building with this sheet of glass. Tired after this long walk, they decided to place this transparent load on the tiled steps on the ground floor before venturing onto the first floor, where the Principal's new office was located. This piece of rectangular glass crashed as they laid it on the floor breaking into two big and dangerous pieces with sharp edges, much to their dismay and the consternation of the superiors.


            We spent the night of March 18 in the spacious dormitory in the new building. On March 19, 1964, after the morning Eucharist in Latin celebrated in honor of St. Joseph, the husband of Mary and Patron of the Universal Church, we were officially welcomed to the new building by the austere Rector Fr. Joseph Murphy who along with Fr. Joe Dhyrianathan and Fr. Jos Menezes celebrated their name feast. I remember how Fr. Murphy assembled the 60 seminarians and the five Salesians, distributed a slab of Cadbury milk chocolate to each one and requested that we respect the building rules by keeping it clean and by not running inside the broad corridors of the new L shaped building with two floors covered with smooth, bluish grey and shining Cuddapah stone tiles.


            A few months later after we returned from the Summer vacation the number of the seminarians swelled to 90.  I was now in the tenth grade and there were significant changes among our Salesian staff. Our pioneer Rector was gone and we were introduced to the new Rector, Fr. Mauro Casarotti. He was a visionary Salesian who was instrumental in acquiring the property in Lonavla for the purpose of establishing an apostolic school. His stay with us was brief as he was appointed Provincial Superior and moved to the Salesian Province of Calcutta. The experienced Fr. Antonio Alessi, who had been until recently  the Provincial Superior of the Salesian Province of Gauhati, became our new Rector. Fr. Joe Dhyrianathan and Fr. Jos Menezes were replaced by Fr. P. I. Jacob and Fr. K. P. Jacob. Fr. Cajetan Lobo from Colvale in Goa and Br. Joe Rodrigues from Bandra in Bombay were two great additions to the Salesian staff which had grown to eight.


            Among the fondest memories of 1964, I recall the visit to Bombay for the International Eucharistic Congress in December when we were able to see Pope Paul VI. After this memorable visit to Bombay, Fr. Abraham Poonolly from the Madras Province visited us in Lonavla. As was customary in Salesian houses, since the time when Don Bosco's mother addressed and wished good night to the first residents in a Don Bosco Shelter, Fr. Poonolly gave us a hilarious and memorable good night talk which I would like to entitle "Lucky Chance." He shared how by "lucky chance" he had the opportunity to visit Bombay and concelebrate with the Pope. He also stated that it was truly by "lucky chance" that he found in my companion Devassy Chirakel his country cousin from the birth place of Sri Shankaracharya in Kaladi, Kerala. Truly, we were all lucky to be finally settled in a beautiful building with a great set of colleagues and superiors in Lonavla.





The First One Hundred RESIDENTS

Salesians, Staff and Aspirants [December 1964]

at Don Bosco Apostolic High School in Lonavla, India



Row 1: Left to Right: Mathias Vaz, Vivian D'Souza Vincent Braganza, Stanislaus D'Souza, Orville Coutinho, Emmanuel Poovelikal, M.U. John, Carl D'Sa, Jerry D'Souza, Melvin D'Souza, Desmond Days, Nelson Carvalho, Irvin Coelho, Orlando Noronha, Zenon D'Souza, Stephen Rodrigues, Cyriac Mathew.

Row 2: [The author] Ariosto Coelho Mark Barco, William Sequeira, Claude Alvares, ?Justin Dantas, Louis Zacharias, Philip Adrianwala, William Falcao, Dennis D'Souza, Derrick Vaz, Felizberto Gracias, Derrick Vaz, Anthony Luis, Mario VAz, Eusebio Mascarenhas, Bosco Araujo, Mariano D'Costa, Emmanuel Plumoothil

Row 3: Napoleon -, Neville Sequeira, Percival Fernandes, Viren Coutts, John Santiago, ----, Chacko Thomas, Vincent Kaiparanbil, Anthony Noronha, V. L. Davis, Walter Coutts, Johnny Abraham, Corlis Gonsalves, Ernest D'Souza - Falcao, Teotonio -, ---, Nelson Ferreira, ?Devassy Chirakel, ---, Godfrey Remedios, Adrian -, Anthony D'Souza [driver]

Row 4: Suresh Lobo, ---, Br. John Samala, Fr. K. K. Jacob, [empty Fr. Bianchi], Fr. Anthony Alessi, Fr. Cajetan Lobo, Fr. P. I . Jacob, Br. M. O. Matthew, Br. Joe Rodrigues

Row 5:  James Dunbar, Alvito Mendonsa, Joe Braganza, Kishore Coelho, Stanislaus Ferreira, Thomas Dias, Anaclete D'Mello, Bosco Pereira, Edward Rangel, Ronald -, Kurian Katticaren, Adolph Furtado, Lucas Mendonsa, ---, Paul D'Souza, Benjamin Alvares, ---

Row 6: Edward D'Souza, Z. de Souza, Johnny Fernandes, Charlie Falcao, Joseph Pandicherry, Ignatius Falcao, Peter D'Silva, Richard Dennis, Lavy D'Costa, Julian -, ---, William -.

The author is grateful to Z. de Souza for his assistance in identifying many of the residents in this picture and in editing the articles below. If you have more accurate info, including of those not identified [George K. J., Thomas K. J., Thomas K. M., ...], please contact  AriostoCoelho@yahoo.com.




Almost 60 years later [1962-2021]

The Salesians of India, the World and Youth


Fr. Ariosto Coelho's letter on January 31, 2020

[Appendix D pages 218-222 in Fr. Coelho's Integral Memoirs Vol IV, Led by God Book 2 [2020]





Dear Friends at Don Bosco Lonavla 1962 to 1973,

especially Fr. Adolph, Fr. William and Fr. Anaclete,


Grateful and prayerful greetings!

Today, let us celebrate St. John Bosco [1815-88], the man of God, to whom you and I owe much in the Mumbai and Goa Provinces and elsewhere!

 Right from the moment I was picked up by Fr. William Falcao and Fr. Stanny Ferreira at the Airport in Mumbai on Jan 4, 2020, I experienced the warm friendship of the SDB friends from Vasai. As I focus on our lives and your accomplishments, please permit me to humbly share with you references to My Integral Memoirs.[1] I hope you find them helpful along your journey to wholeness with the Breath/Spirit of the Risen Christ.

As I participated in the Solemn Eucharistic Con-celebration at Don Bosco in Lonavla on Epiphany Sunday 2020 I was blessed to witness The Shawl Ceremony. I hope you take delight in my reflections on the “three shawls” which warrant my attention. My intention in writing this letter is as pure as Fr. Egidio Sola, SDB Novice Master 1952-70, would have wanted it to be 50 years ago, viz., “to give God 60 acts of love every hour” –a mindfulness practice today– THE POWER OF NOW.

In SDB West October-November 2019, joyfully I have read about you as ‘Jubilerians’ celebrating 50 years of religious profession. I praise God for each one of you and the marvels accomplished by you over these years. I do not need to remind you to playfully hold on to the shawl [breathing in - let God gracefully] while peacefully surrendering it [breathing out - let go gratefully]. Like Job 1/21 may we realize the practical wisdom of “naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return tither, the Lord gave and the Lord took away; blessed be the name of the Lord” [PB pp205-210].[2]


1. A SHAWL like Aladdin’s magic carpet

                This shawl engages in flights of imagination and transports the wearer to unknown destinations. I agree with Fr. Mario Vaz who describes The Serene Visionary as “Fr. Adolph loves to move boundaries” [SDB West p7].

                Yes! Adolph, I am proud to know you and admire the various facets of your personality.[3] In 1963 I remember you as a stony carpet for a fast paced cricket ball at the Nazir Bungalow in Lonavla. In 1970 you excelled with Baden Powell in Yercaud and accepted me as your Assistant Scout Master at Don Bosco High School Matunga [1972-74]. I am grateful to you for your friendship especially as I moved from Rome to San Francisco [1987-89]. You were always gracious as you welcomed Vivian and me [1994- ] to the institutions where you lived in Matunga, Andheri, Kurla and Lonavla. We enjoyed being on the carpet with you especially as we flew to Alaska and sailed the glacial waters in May 2017.

                Here’s my prayer as you embrace the magic of your transformational presence at the 28th General Chapter of the Salesians beginning in February 2020 in Turin, Italy. Please allow me to offer a few of my insights on “What kind of Salesians for the youth of today?” As you tap into the fountain of youth like Don Bosco, remember that youth is now considered a commodity.[4] If interested in my Letters for Integral Leaders, please check PB pp139-159.[5]


2. A passion-filled SHAWL like the Shroud of Turin

                William, I have known you since 1963 when we studied in the IX grade at the Nazir Bungalow in Lonavla. Almost ten years later we were Salesian Assistants of the IV group at DB in Lonavla [1971-72]. I was delighted that you accepted to be part of my Community in 1983-85 as a change agent to transform DB Farm in Sulcorna into an agro-educational institution.[6] Since 2015 the DBAEC in Sulcorna, manages the only Agricultural College in Goa.

I am impressed with your zeal for souls, devotion to duty and practical approach to life. I agree with Fr. Savio D’Souza that “Fr. William is a multi-faceted personality, and will be remembered as a missionary, as involved in social development and as an educationist” [SDB West p13]. Your shawl is passionate, driven by honesty, compassion and affection like the Holy Shroud of Turin totally wrapped around the body of Christ - leading to the Resurrection. William, I am grateful to you for touching my life with your wisdom and quest for justice, especially for the downtrodden in Batarahalli-Bangalore [1976-78] and Sulcorna, Goa [1983-85]. In 1993-94 while studying Salesian Spirituality in Berkeley, CA, you were also present to Vivian. Thank you!

Let us continue to pray with The Transformative Power of Jesus’ Breath.[7] While drawing from the lives of Christian mystics I am inclined to describe four spiritual directions along The Christian Way of the Breath that lead to Youthful Wholeness or divine union like Don Bosco.


3. An ocean-like SHAWL, divine

Anaclete, I have known you since 1963. While we were together in Lonavla, Yercaud, Bangalore and as members of the Mumbai-Goa Province, we did not have many common interests and our paths did not cross as often or as intimately. I am glad that after my marriage to Vivian we were able to re-connect in California [1995].

Fr. Kiran Salve writes “Fr. Anaclete D’Mello is the Varun Devta[8] to the tribals of the Jawahar and Mokada areas of Palghar district” [SDB West p8]. On January 7, 2020, I witnessed with my own eyes the transformation that you, a “man of God,” have brought about in Walvanda, Maharashtra.

You are like the ocean, a powerfully silent yet, an all-embracing shawl. I appreciate your sharing with me that for the past ten years you’ve worked silently with the people of the Warli tribe. I am proud of your accomplishments and of the sacrifices you and all your supporters made to bring not only physical water but also the mystical water of happiness and laughter,[9] thus transforming the lives of these people and making the world a better place.


By way of Conclusion: HAPPY FEAST of DON BOSCO

I recall that Nelson Ferreira, MD, and I, too, were given golden shawls by Clifford Martis and the Organizers [see photo on p215]. I am grateful to YOU and all at DBL. I’d like to call mine The Shawl of Delight in consonance with Don Bosco’s directive to St. Dominic Savio “holiness consists in being cheerful” - gratefully delightful!

In and Out” is how I perceive my current status. This is the insight I shared in the refectory at Don Bosco in Lonavla on Epiphany Sunday 2020. For more on The Spirituality of Breathing “In and Out” please check Poetic Breaths.[10] Since I have had the unique privilege of being both “Inside and Outside” as a Salesian of Don Bosco, a Roman Catholic and a celibate priest, I hope my inner and outer perspectives reflect my caring and daring reality as being both centripetal and centrifugal like the 17000 breaths we are fortunate to take every single day.

While at DB in Lonavla on Jan 4, 2020 I recalled Fr. Cajetan Lobo [1912-98] and introduced my reflection on his Eucharistic Spirituality.[11] As we glow and grow with The Mirror of Wholeness please pray My Mandala Prayer with me. “Today, as our lives unfold and enfold White, round, docile, sacrificing Fragrance … In every moment: a mirror of compassion Infinity, Intimacy and Integrity In-harmony.”


Fr. Ariosto J. Coelho

Moima Ashram: The Church of Delight

where grateful people are happy people



  SIMPLY  Breathing in   air through the nostrils

  FULL         Flowing            throughout the body

  FREELY   Breathing out     into the atmosphere

  EMPTY     Experience   the pause. Ariosto

[1] Coelho, A. J., 2020. Poetic Breaths for You and All World Leaders. [PB] San Bruno: Spiritual Direction. I am grateful to those who acquired a copy.

[2] For more please check my reflection on the death of Archbishop Dominic Jala [1951-2019], our confrere and companion at KJC in Bangalore [1976-78]. B00 CONCLUDING BREATHS: Unless the Lord builds, ...” Psalm 127/1. From the human shelter to the house of God: Shadow-Work, Dream-Work, Soul-work and Spirit-Work [environmental and universal].

[3] PB pp32-33 A mosaic of Don Bosco.

[4] In today's hyper-socialized, Facebook fanatic, selfie-obsessed world, youth is the primary driver of business and culture. Smart companies are looking to tap into the fountain of youth, and the others are sinking fast. Matt Britton’s book entitled YouthNation: Building Remarkable Brands in a Youth-Driven Culture [New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 2015] offers a roadmap to brand relevancy in the new economy, giving businesses turn-by-turn direction to their market destination, where youth is just not an age, but a commodity.

[5] B2017 [16 breaths] BE BLESSED: Memoirs of a Youth Worker

   L1 A Letter to the Younger Generations  and All who believe in them, L2 Open Letter to the Post-1995 Generation, L3 A Letter to all courageous and visionary souls, L4 A Letter to every soul that seeks peace on Earth, L5 A Letter to ancient mystics, prophets, … and yogis, L6 A Letter to meditators, … and wise readers, L7 A Letter to all breathing human beings, L92 Listen to Revelation from World Myths, L93 Listen to Inspiration from World Leaders [Poem], L94 With the mind of a Teacher - L95 With the heart of a Healer - L96 With the soul of an Artist - L97 With the zeal of a Priest - L98 Please pray with me - For you are a world leader!

[6] http://www.spiritualdirection.org/Sulcorna.htm#_endref11

[7] B4 The Power of the Breath, My Magic Synthesis …, B9 A glimpse of eternity energized by the breath like Don Bosco, B10 63 Daily Practices to glow with Light and grow with Delight, B13 Why a book on Prayer: WHY PRAY? B14 I pray like the Risen Christ with the Coelho’s of Aquem 1560, B15 How Jesus became God, B16 The Transformative Power of Jesus’ Breath, B17 Experiencing the Father [Abba] as the Eternal Word, B18 Purifying with the coming [Maranatha] of Jesus of Nazareth, B19 Illuminating with the peaceful [Shalom] Spirit of the Risen Christ, B20 Celebrating glory [Ooteeshbokhta]: Mystical Communion

[8] An ocean God in the Vedas.

[9] b2019 LAUGH WITH ME: Memoirs of a Spiritual Guide

IG1 Infinity: A fundamental Cosmological principle, IG2 Intimacy: A post-scientific Cultural perspective, IG3 Integrity: A post-religious Mystical outlook SpiritualDirection.org, IG4 In-harmony: With Christ-like Wisdom, IG5 Impermanence: Knowing beyond Matter, Life …, IG6 Intentionally: The A B C D of selfless Compassion, IG7 Inner Work: Simply Full, Freely Empty, IG8 Inward and Outward: With 100 trillion connections, IG9 Inspired to Laugh: Bringing the world together …, IG10 I taste the sweetness of life, IG11 Imagine the Universe breathing in you, IG12 Innocence as Forgiveness, IG13 Imperfection finding Perfection

[10] POETIC, because there is more than one way to express prosaic reality with insightful, lyrical, rhythmic or uplifting words and profound sentiments. IMAGINATION is the human ability to form new ideas, images or concepts resourcefully beyond those experiences of sensations, perceptions and memories provided by the external senses. I tend to include the positive vibrations of FAITH in the realm of poetic imagination. The spectra of these energies ,  and  in the creative, nurturing, sustaining and destroying processes as INTEGRAL to make every body, mind, heart, soul and environment  and  with the Spirit [as Breath].

[11] In Led by God [A. J. Coelho. 2020] I wrote a whole chapter entitled “The Big Wolf [Lobo] and the Little Rabbit [Coelho]” where I describe how Fr. Lobo’s Eucharistic Spirituality inspired me.  Here, I share how his “Centering Prayer” led to my “Integral Prayer” and “Mandalas of Wholeness” [see PB B1972] -the White Host where trust and truth unfold and enfold as prayer, -the Docile Host where infinity and eternity meet in every breath, -the Round Host where forgiving and giving thanks is true wealth, -the Cross on the Host where painful Imperfection is Perfection: colorless, borderless, selfless and guiltless in a Wounded World where grateful people are happy peopleChurch of Delight!






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