Founded in 1859 by Saint John Bosco, there are currently 15,560 members (priests and brothers) in the Salesian Congregation, working in 131 countries around the world. In the past few years new works have been undertaken in Azerbaijan, Iraq, Kuwait, Mauritius and Mongolia. As well as the Society of St. Francis de Sales, John Bosco also founded the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians (Salesian Sisters), and the Association of Salesian Cooperators.

salesianfamilyJohn always wanted to have lay people as part of his work and mission. The magnetism of his personality and the attractiveness of his educational philosophy have attracted many lay groups to become part of the Salesian Family. Thirty such groups have been officially recognised that have a total of 402,500 members. These groups live in communion with each other, share the same spirit and, with specifically distinct vocations, continue the mission he began. Don Bosco’s charism continues to inspire people of good will. There are currently 23 more groups that are seeking membership within the Salesian Family.


New RMRector Major: Superior of the Salesian Society

Fr Ángel Fernández Artime was elected by the 27th General Chapter, 25th March 2014; he is the tenth successor of Don Bosco.

“The Rector Major, the superior of the Salesian Society, is the successor of Don Bosco, the father and centre of unity of the Salesian Family.” (C 126)


Some Factual Details

• Official title: Society of St Francis de Sales
• Alternative title: Salesians of Don Bosco
• Date founded: 18 December 1859
• Founder: St John Bosco
• Salesians: 15,560
• Countries: 131
• Regions: 8
• Provinces: 89
• Salesian Family Groups: 30