St John Bosco relic visits St Vincent's Care Heathcote on tour

Posted 14th August 2023

A painting of St John Bosco from when he was still alive


The relic statue of St John Bosco, better known as Don Bosco, will be touring Australia as part of the celebrations of the centenary of the arrival of the Salesians on Australian soil. The Salesians came to the shore of Australia on 30th March 1923 in Fremantle, Western Australia. 

The relic statue will be on display here in the John Paul Village Church of Mary Help Of Christians on 19th August 2023 between the times of 9am – 5pm. They have services and reconciliation and other religious activities planned for the day. 

Address: St Vincent's Care Heathcote, 15 The Avenue, Heathcote, NEW SOUTH WALES 2233

The wax replica of the Saint contained in a glass casket comes from the Province of Hong Kong,  made by Gianpiero Zoncu at the time of Don Bosco's beatification in 1929. 


John Bosco was born on 16 August 1815 in a farmhouse near a small village east of Turin in northern Italy. Since his childhood and as a mission from God, he had a desire to help the young people in need. He was ordained as a priest in Turin in 1841, at the age of 26 and dedicated his entire life for the good of the young to become 'good Christians and upright citizens'. Following his untiring life with the young, Don Bosco died on 31st January 1888 in Turin. He was declared a saint by Pope Pius Xl on Easter Sunday, 1st April in 1934. Don Bosco is the patron saint of young people. 

In Catholic Christianity, a relic is of immense reverence, and helps to remind individuals of the holiness of a saint, and the fulfillment of God's work through the saint. A relic can consist of anything from the bones of a saint to an object that the saint came in contact with during his or her lifetime. 

A small bone from the right arm of the Saint was removed and placed in this wax replica before being securely concealed in the large glass casket


The 410 kg glass casket containing the wax replica of St John Bosco will be received by the Salesian Province Centre in Ascot Vale, Victoria by the end of June. It will be on tour and displayed for prayers and homage at various Salesian works in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Hobart and Perth from July to September 2023. 

The relic will stay at the Catholic Leadership Centre in East Melbourne during the Salesian Biannual Educational Conference in August. It will also journey with the Salesians and many lay members at the Centenary Retreat in the last week of September at the Foothills in Mooroolbark. 

The relic statue of St John Bosco will be farewell from Australia during the concluding Mass of the Centenary led by Archbishop Peter Comensoli on Saturday 30th September at St Margaret Mary's parish in North Brunswick at 11:00 am. 

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