The history of our society can be traced to an obscure village in the north of Italy called The Becchi (I Becchi, in Italian).
Our history began, we may say, when little John Bosco dreamed a very strange dream at the age of 9. Or we may date the origins of our society to a surprise encounter that brought him face to face with a frightened street urchin in a church sacristy on 8 December 1841. Or perhaps to the little band of 17 young men to whom Don Bosco first gave the title ‘Salesians’ on 26 January, 1854.
But these historical facts barely explain our international existence as a ‘family’ of nearly 402,500 members in the service of young people.
With a feeling of humble gratitude we believe that the Society of St. Francis de Sales came into being not as a merely human venture but by the initiative of God.
(source: Const. Art. 1)