Sr. Giustina Boggione: Knight of Merit of the Italian Republic

The President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella, conferred the honor of Knight of the Order “Merit of the Italian Republic” to Sr. Giustina (Marcella) Boggione. Born in Turin, Northern Italy on 17April 1940, Sr. Giustina has been a Daughter of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul for 61 years and served adolescents and other young people most marginalized by society.

Sr. Giustina lived the first years of her vocation in Milan and while she was preparing to pronounce her vows for the first time, she graduated in Economics and Commerce at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart; she began her mission in the school for secretaries opened by the Vincentian Community in the same city. Subsequently, the need for a director came up at the Professional Training Center II of the Institute Salotto e Fiorito of Rivoli (near Turin); Sr. Giustina was installed Director of Professional Courses.

The Lord has written His story of charity through Sr Giustina’s service in favor of an ever-increasing number of young people and adults to whom she assured work and the promise of a bright future. Anticipating the times, Sr. Giustina began a constructive relationship with a businessman from Turin, starting – since the 80’s – the experience of school-work alternation for all students of the Professional School.

However, the training needs of young people and adolescents have also expressed expectations that go beyond purely professional training; the care for a holistic promotion of the person and the formation for a personal project of life, understood as the call of the Lord, constituted Sr. Giustina’s educational foundation.

The Vincentian values of welcome and proximity and promotion of human dignity particularly in the midst of degradation and misery have motivated Sr. Giustina to fulfill her responsibility to reach young people especially the most vulnerable and those who are excluded from school and training opportunities due to personal and social difficulties. The goal was and is to give them cultural and professional tools in view of the development of each person as a citizen of society and as a child of the same Father. Sr. Giustina transmits this awareness and sense of commitment to the team of formators who not only transfers practical skills and abilities but also demonstrates attitudes of care, affection and benevolence to the young people and adults present at Salotto e Fiorito on a daily basis, conscious that learning is successful only if everyone feels appreciated and esteemed as a person.

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