The Salesians of Don Bosco are a Congregation within the Church of both lay brothers and priests that, founded and continually inspired by St. John Bosco, live an evangelical and fraternal life that is characterised by a deep union with God and an apostolic outreach towards the young, especially those who are poor.

The first presence of the SDBs in the Maltese Islands traces its origin back to 1903, only 15 years after the death of Don Bosco. The first house to open was St. Patrick’s in Sliema. Many developments related to the Congregation in Malta ensued in the following decades, which are explained in detail in the section History. It is also noteworthy that the SDBs are just one branch of the Salesian Family Tree.

Our Consecration: Da Mihi Animas Cetera Tolle

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Emblem and motto of the Salesian Congregation

Give Me Souls and Take Away the Rest (Da Mihi Animas Cetera Tolle)

We live as disciples of the Lord by the grace of the Father, who consecrates us through the gift of his Spirit and sends us out to be apostles of the young.

Through our religious profession, we offer ourselves to God in order to follow Christ and work with him in building up the Kingdom. Our apostolic mission, our fraternal community and the practice of the evangelical counsels are the inseparable elements of our consecration which we live in a single movement of love towards God and towards our brothers.

Our mission sets the tenor of our whole life; it specifies the task we have in the Church and our place among other religious families.

(SDB Constitutions, Art. 2)

Our motto, Da Mihi Animas, Cetera Tolle, translates to: Give me souls and take everything else. What may appear as a peculiar saying reveals the salvation of the young as the ultimate purpose of our life and the ascetical programme that Don Bosco wanted us to live. The simple words remind us of Don Bosco’s profound humanity and spirituality, the “splendid blending of nature and grace” to which we are drawn and by which we are inspired to mould the plan of our lives.