Dear Faculty Members and Friends,

We congratulate Fr. Dr Eric John Wyckoff, the Professor of the Holy Scripture at Studium Theologicum Salesianum (Jerusalem Campus), on the publication of his Book entitled:

John 4:1–42 Among the Biblical Well Encounters. Pentateuchal and Johannine Narrative Reconsidered (Mohr Siebeck, 2020).

In his book, Dr Wyckoff brings to focus the encounters at the wells narrated in the Pentateuch (Genesis 24 and 29, Exodus 2) and the New Testament (John 4).

As research is an essential part of the mission of the Professors at STS, we are delighted about Fr. Eric's publication and express our good wishes for his future research and teaching at STS.

Fr. Andrzej Toczyski

STS President



No sooner had classes commenced in mid-September, Israel was once again in
national lock-down. Life came to a halt and contingency plans were put into
action. Zoom classes became the norm allowing all the students to follow the
weekly schedule on line.
The intended Dies Academicus - usually a grand event with a guest speaker and
many invited participants – was just not possible this year. Instead, we marked
the occasion of beginning the new Academic Year 2020-2021 with a simple
ceremony. After words of welcome given by the new President of STS, Rev.
Father Andrzej Toczyski SDB, a Solemn Mass of the Holy Spirit was celebrated,
presided by the Vice Provincial of the MOR Province, Rev. Father Emanuele
Vezzoli SDB and assisted by Rev. Father Andrzej Toczyski (President) and Rev.
Father Stanislaus Swamikannu SDB (Rector). In his homily, Father Emanuele
inspired his listeners, speaking about theology and how it must engage the
mind as well as the heart. He urged the assembly to be always committed in
both mind and heart, because “what you are is God’s gift to you, and what you
make of yourself is your gift to God and to the young.” He stressed that
studying theology is a way to become this gift.
After a musical interlude, Rev. Father Matthew Coutinho SDB presented the
returning and new members of staff who would be teaching this year. He then
proceeded to introduce all the new members of the 1st year, hailing from eight
different countries in Asia, Africa & Europe. Because of the situation, they
have still to arrive but they are very much united with us via Zoom. We pray
they will soon be with us here in Jerusalem.
Congratulations were then given to the highest achieving students in each year
during 2019-2020. Sr Angela Ridout (Registrar) presented the special award to
Br Calvin Akunga M.Afr., the top scorer in last year’s Third Year, now in his final
year at STS.
After declaring the new Academic Year officially opened, the President invited
everyone to participate in the Light refreshments before concluding the
morning’s event.

- Sister Angela Ridout SJA – Registrar

24 October, 2020



Saturday 24th October 2020

Fr Emanuele Vezzoli sdb
Vice-Provincial (MOR)

Theology is a knowledge of God, and that is a great deal more than a
knowledge about God. You are called to study God in order to understand
creation and you are invited to contemplate creation in order to find God.
This kind of knowing requires faith and it is filled with love; it is actually an
intimate knowledge of God in our own lives. Such intimacy described in
today’s Gospel as “My Father will love you, and we will come to you and
make our dwelling with you” is not only opens our intelligence to God but
also to ourselves and to creation. If there is not this divine liturgy of love
within ourselves, all other liturgies we perform are simply something that
may mask a void.
So theology is not simply Fides quaerens intellectum, (according
to St. Anselm’s definition of theology) but also fides querens cor.
Theology engages the mind as well as the heart. In this way theology
becomes an expression of our passion for God, the Triune and personal
God dwelling within us, and for the people to whom we are sent. Commit
your mind, commit your heart to it because: “What you are is God's gift to
you, what you make of yourself is your gift to God and to the young.”
Studying theology is a way to become a gift.
God’s dwelling within you will raise more questions than you could have
imagined. Let them surface even if they are disturbing. Theology has to
break you down (your faith, your God, your ideology) and then build you up
Do whatever it takes, because if at the end of these four years your faith
(both as fides quae - faith in something- and fides qua - what one has faith
in) has not changed, what a waste.

All theology is pastoral and with this I mean to say that we study “knowing
God”, for the purpose of living (and dying).
It is one thing to know that God saves. It is another matter to know God
saves me in the events of my life. That God saves is a fact, realization that
God saves me in my history is astonishing and life transforming. Theology
for the sake of theology is irrelevant and unnecessary, theology for the
sake of marks (and of ego) is pointless and narcissistic. Theology for the
sake of those God is sending you to, is necessary and crucial. What
people, and particularly the young, want to perceive within your speech and
liturgies, within your lives, is not your void, and not your God, but the God
revealed by Jesus of Nazareth, that God who in this very land pitched his
Do not forget that to study theology in this Land is a unique opportunity and
gift. And because you give what you have and you cannot give what you do
not have, again I invite you to commit yourselves. In this journey you are
not alone: the Father, through the Son, sends you his Spirit: “He will teach
you everything and remind you of all that I told you.” He will send you his
Wisdom. St. Seraphim of Sarov says: “Our faith is not based on words of
earthly wisdom but on the manifestation of the power of the Spirit” and
“Acquiring the Spirit of God is therefore the true goal of our Christian life”,
“It is necessary that the Holy Spirit enters our heart. Everything good that
we do, that we do for Christ, is given to us by the Holy Spirit”.
It is thanks to the Paraclete that we are be able to penetrate the meaning of
the Word of Jesus and to appropriate it existentially, renewing it in the
world of today helping us understand the needs and values of the present
time. The Gospel is always the Gospel and faith is always faith but how can
we understand them as coming from the Spirit, for the people of our time.
Dear Brothers, dear Professors I wish you all a fruitful and Spirit-filled
academic journey!


September 11, 2020 - STS -Jerusalem The First Assembly of Students was also held on the 11th of September 2020 in the Rashi Auditorium

It included:

  • Information from the Principal about the current situation (especially the 1st Year Students)
  • The ‘Hybrid Mode’ of learning and probability of the lockdown from the 19th of September.
  • Changes to the Academic Calendar 2020-2021
  • New teaching Staff members
  • Self-evaluation programme
  • Open forum



September 11, 2020 - STS -Jerusalem It is already September and time to establish the goals for the new Academic Year 2020-21. Critical decisions that require input from the teaching community must be taken - Staff meetings are the most important opportunities to set the tone for the whole academic year.

On the threshold of this new Academic Year, still tangibly threatened by the covid 19, the Assembly of the STS Teaching Staff (Jerusalem Campus) met for the first time on 11th September 2020 to plan the beginning of the new Academic Year with special attention to the first semester’s period of national lock-down.  The new Principal of STS, Fr Andrzej Toczyski, gave important input concerning the Self-Evaluation programme that will commence in the very near future.


Dear Staff and Students,

It is very hot in Jerusalem these days, so I put on a t-shirt that a friend gave me last summer, and then, one of our students noticed the beautiful message on it - the words of Nelson Mandela: It always seems impossible until is done. Although coined in different socio-historical circumstances, it still carries a timeless truth: Things often seem impossible until they are done.

It seemed impossible to finish the previous academic year 2019-2020 because of the crisis caused by Covid 19. Nevertheless, thanks to the untiring efforts of our previous Principal Fr. Gustavo Cavagnari, the Secretary Sr Angela Ridout, the teaching staff and students, it was successfully accomplished.

At a certain point this summer, it seemed almost impossible that we would begin the new academic year on time, and now we are on the threshold of regular classes in the next week. We begin our classes with the First Year on the “hybrid learning” model and all others will have face-to-face classes (unless otherwise specified).

I think this reminds us of an evangelical attitude for we are asked to have firm hope in God’s providence, and at the same time to work effortlessly and explore new frontiers.

Dear Staff and Students I am happy to welcome each one of you to the new Academic Year 2020-2021 at STS (Jerusalem Campus)

Fr. Andrzej Toczyski SDB

The Principal STS


June 11 2018 - STS - Jerusalem On June 11, three STS Students successfully completed their Baccalaureate exams.

John Paul Soro SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "God’s Progressive Revelation: Creation, Fullness in Christ, the Holy Spirit in the Church, and the Beatific Vision at the Parousia".

Desta Wolde Milkisa SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "The Priesthood of Christ and of Christians: The Nature and Exercise of the Common and the Ministerial Priesthood and the Treatment of These Themes in Ecumenical Dialogue".

Paolo Negrini SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "'He Loved Them to the End' (Jn 13:1). Christ’s Self-Giving Love for Us, Revealed in Its Fullness in the Paschal Mystery, Enables Us to Live Our Life in Him, in the Trinity, in the Church and for the World, so That We Become Self-Giving, like Him".

John Paul Soro SDB
Desta Wolde Milkisa SDB
Paolo Negrini SDB


June 9 2018 - STS - Jerusalem On June 9, three STS Students successfully completed their Baccalaureate exams.

Vladimir Plasek SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "Christians Are Sons and Daughters in the Son: “But When the Fullness of Time Had Come, God Sent His Son, Born of a Woman, Born under the Law, to Ransom Those under the Law, So That We Might Receive Adoption. As Proof That You Are Children, God Sent the Spirit of His Son into Our Hearts, Crying Out, ‘Abba, Father’” (Gal 4:4-6)".

Gnana Pragash Rayappan SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "'God Became Man So That Man Could Become the Son Of God' (Athanasius). The Incarnation Reveals the Holy Trinity’s Project of Eternal Love and Manifests the Model of a New Humanity in Christ".

Andrea Lupi SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "The Parousia of the Lord As Condition For The Full Realization Of The Life In Christ".

Vladimir Plasek SDB
Gnana Pragash Rayappan SDB
Andrea Lupi SDB


June 8 2018 - STS - Jerusalem On June 8, two STS Students successfully completed their Baccalaureate exams.

Vernon Lushibashi SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "Jesus Transcends Social Barriers, Offers Himself as the Sacrificial Lamb and Unites Divided Humanity".

Anil Kido SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "The Eucharist as an "Action of Christ and of the People of God Hierarchically Ordered" Is the Summit of Christian Life and the Source from Which the Church’s Action Takes Its Origin".

Vernon Lushibashi SDB
Anil Kido SDB


June 7 2018 - STS - Jerusalem On June 7, three STS Students successfully completed their Baccalaureate exams.

Benedetto Di Bitonto successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "'We Saw His Star at Its Rising and Have Come to Do Him Homage.' A Sign of Fulfillment, Salvation, Divinity and Universality: Theological Implications of Matthew 2:1-12".

Joel Moreira successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "Jesus’ Hour and Human Redemption: 'Amen, Amen, I Say to You, Unless a Grain of Wheat Falls to the Ground and Dies, It Remains Just a Grain of Wheat, but if It Dies, It Produces Much Fruit' (Jn 12:24)".

Tiziano Conti SDB successfully presented his Theological Synthesis, "'Truth, Freedom and Conscience: Christ, Who Taught That 'The Truth Will Set You Free' (Jn 8:32) and Described Himself as 'The Way, the Truth and the Life' (Jn 14:6) Illumines the Individual Conscience, Bringing Human Beings into the Fullness of Truth and Setting Them Free".

Benedetto Di Bitonto
Joel Moreira
Tiziano Conti SDB