Placidus Fernandes sdb NASHIK, JANUARY 22, 2009: On January 17, the entire Salesian community of Nashik gathered around Fr. Ashley Miranda, to celebrate with him the 25 Years he has been a Salesian. Also present for the occasion were his mother and several family members. At the start of the Eucharistic celebration, the Novice Master, Fr. Solomon Rapol, extolled the many gifts of heart and mind which Fr. Ashley possesses. He added that it was indeed a blessing to have Fr. Ashley in the novitiate community. During the homily, the jubilarian praised the Lord for His goodness and His faithfulness. He reiterated St. Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians when he said “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.” He humbly acknowledged that it was the Lord who gave him the strength to live a life of love and to “walk by faith and not by sight” these twenty five years. He highlighted the fact that the Lord in his kindness has kept him going through these years, years of extreme joy as a son of Don Bosco. He praised the Lord for his goodness towards him and explained to the gathering that the Lord is at everyone’s side in the ‘ups and downs’ of life. He stated “We are always on a path, yet none of us merits or can boast of God’s revelation. The only thing we can say is that God is Good, He is kind, He calls us, consecrates us and gives us a vocation.” Fr. Ashley concluded his homily by sharing with the assembly three points which have deeply touched his life: that God loves us with a personal, providential Love; that all of us are called to be saints and this can be accomplished by doing the ordinary things in an extraordinary manner by living life 200 percent cheerfully; that God has a plan for everyone and has called each one of us to be His instruments of Love. The evening climaxed with a festive dinner in honour of the jubilarian.