The following comes from the Salesian News Agency:
Among the solemn events held yesterday 27 April, the final day of the presence of Don Bosco’s casket in Ecuador, was a Mass celebrated in the Sanctuary of Mary Help of Christians in Guayaquil attended by the President of Ecuador Rafael Correa. The Mass which came at the conclusion of the visit of the casket to the “Cristobal Colón” Institute was also attended by various religious and civil authorities.
When he spoke, the Head of State, who spent some minutes in front of the casket referred to the work of the Salesians and to how he had learned from them a commitment to the poor, to young people and to the native peoples. “Don Bosco is my favourite saint,” he said as he thanked the Salesians, in the name of the people of Ecuador, for their work in the country: “Thanks to you Salesians for what you have done and for what you continue to do.”
In conclusion President Correa asked the young people to pray for the government and especially for him so that he might remain faithful to Don Bosco. His final words, “Don Bosco stay with us” were repeated by the many faithful present who also applauded the President.
Rafael Correa received from the hands of the Provincial of Ecuador, Fr Marcelo Farfán, a small statue of Don Bosco and, led by Fr Luciano Bellini, Rector of the Salesian community he visited some parts of the “Cristobal Colón” Institute where he had been a teacher.
At the end of Mass the casket was taken to the “Dominic Savio” Institute and then in the evening to the “Voltaire Paladines Polo” Square where there was a farewell Mass before it left for Colombia.