The curious dystopia of Bishop Giacomo Cirulli that reminds us a lot “a lot nice” of Verdone who in the newspaper Avvenire blames the no-vax priests, the faithful traditionalists and the political enemies of the Pontiff

- Pastoral care -

THE CURIOUS DISTOPIA OF BISHOP GIACOMO CIRULLI WHICH MUCH REMINDERS US A "BEAUTIFUL SACK" OF VERDONE THAT IN THE DAILY FUTURE BLAME THE NO-VAX PRIESTS, THE FAITHFUL TRADITIONALISTS AND THE POLITICAL ENEMIES OF THE PONTIFF

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The bishops who are currently thundering and threatening some members of their clergy to proceed with their suspension from the exercise of the priestly ministry, in case of non-vaccination, when they saw some of their parish priests hugging Marco Cappato after signing at the banquet that collected the signatures for the referendum in favor of euthanasia, how they threatened these authentic shames of the Catholic priesthood to proceed against them with canonical penalties? How many, among those priests who have affixed their signature to such a proposal for referendum, have been suspended with a canonical disciplinary measure from the exercise of the sacred ministry?

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Author
Ivano Liguori, Ofm. Capp.

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Yesterday, 16 January, in the daily newspaper of the bishops Future an article signed by Gianni Cardinale has appeared which collects the outburst of the bishop of the diocese of Teano-Calvi, Alife-Caiazzo S. AND. Mons. Giacomo Cirulli. The prelate, as sorrowful as the king of Samaria Akhab whose vineyard Neboth refused [cf.. 1 Re 21, 1-16], opens the cataracts of his heart to the journalist of the bishops' newspaper. Thus we come to part of his immense pain that in these days the faithful and priests no-vax they procured him by reacting to the provision - he says of mere common sense - which consisted in banning some priests, deacons and lay ministers from the distribution of the Eucharist to the faithful of his diocese as guilty of not having vaccinated [you see who, who].

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The bishop, gemente e piangente, motivates his stance as the logical consequence of the serious worsening of the Italian pandemic situation but above all as conforming to the line of thought of the Italian Bishops' Conference and the words of the reigning Pontiff who considers vaccination as an act of love. In short, it almost seems to witness the remaking of Carlo Verdone's film A lot nice in which the character of Ruggero can only express his triumph: «Love, love, love!».

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But we are really sure about the resistances complained by the bishop are to be ascribed solely to the opposition of priests and faithful insensitive to such a beautiful and gratuitous act of love? I do not believe. Beyond all that can be said and thought about the issue of vaccines and the Italian pandemic management by both the State and the Church, what still seems to escape Bishop Cirulli - as I was able to clarify in one of mine previous article - essentially consists in the improvised modus operandi to paternally follow the whole question as one would expect from a bishop. Indeed, a different style would be expected from a successor of the Apostles, certainly more far-sighted, I would dare to say almost as a statesman of the spirit who is capable of looking at the present but essentially at the future and at the future consequences that are already determined today. Because all this will end sooner or later and Msgr. Cirulli, one tomorrow, he will still find himself bishop of that portion of the Church whose children have been mistreated with restrictive measures. What attitude will one have to expect from these priestly sons, deacons, ministers and laity? With what courage will he still be able to look at them without feeling red or with what embarrassment he will be able to bear their gaze veiled by a wounded trust? Look of souls destined for Paradise and not just bodies to be treated, this responsibility which must be held accountable to Christ the Good Shepherd, who took care of the bodies without forgetting the souls.

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Above all, a question is required, always premising, as already done in my previous article, that the absolute majority of the Italian clergy has undergone vaccination, including myself. This is the question, however, as usual, it is destined to remain unanswered: the bishops who are currently thundering and threatening some members of their clergy to proceed with their suspension from the exercise of the priestly ministry, in case of non-vaccination, when they saw some of their parish priests embraced a Marco Cappato after having signed at the banquet that collected the signatures for the referendum in favor of euthanasia, how they threatened these authentic shames of the Catholic priesthood to proceed against them with canonical penalties? How many, among those priests who have affixed their signature to such a proposal for referendum, have been suspended with a canonical disciplinary measure from the exercise of the sacred ministry? Some battle bishops tell us and answer: it is more serious than a frightened - perhaps even ignorant - priest afraid to get vaccinated, or is it more serious than a priest, after having just celebrated Holy Mass on Sunday, go out on the church square, sign in favor of the referendum on euthanasia, photograph yourself with Marco Cappato and then post the photo on your public profile social? Tell us, certain zealous bishops: of the two, which is the most serious? But most of all: how many of the priests who have done this - and there have been several around Italy [cf.. who, who, who] ―, they were removed from the parishes? Because to us it turns out the exact opposite: their respective bishops ignored it, they have not taken any measures and these priests continue to be parish priests. If I want I can add even more: one of these parish priests who signed in favor of referendum on euthanasia, a few weeks later he posted on the door of the parish church the notice that to participate in the sacred functions it was mandatory to GreenPass. Maybe, if for so much zeal his bishop even took him as an example to those very few priests who are frightened by the vaccine, but to whom it would never cross their minds to go and sign in favor of referendum on euthanasia?

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It is not my intention to criticize common sense and the reasonableness of the vaccine as a method currently in use to stem Covid-19 infection, indeed I go back to repeating, for the avoidance of doubt, that we Fathers de The Island of Patmos we all underwent the vaccination. Not only: to those who asked us for guidance we have always replied by premising that we are not specialists in the specific and delicate sector but that we are, even if it is not, common sense leads us to suggest the use of the only system that we currently have available, which is vaccination, to read too, wanting, as a sense of responsibility and respect for ourselves and for others. And as, on certain hot topics, the clarifications are never too many, then I clarify further. When I announced to Father Ariel this morning that I had just sent this new article to the editorial office, his answer was: «Right now I'm going to the vaccination center because after having done the III dose the 10 January I did not receive the SMS with the code needed to print the GreenPass. As soon as I return, we will assemble your item ". In short, he didn't tell me he was going to a demonstration no-vax, how Father Gabriel would not say it and how I would not say it. Having said this, however, it is good to specify that "good" and "bad" Catholics do not evaluate them on the basis of vaccination - which is opportune and undoubtedly necessary -, but on other moral and pastoral grounds. For example we are required to consider "bad", indeed very bad Catholics, those who publicly declare themselves in favor of abortion, the birth control pill, the abortion pill, to marriage between same-sex couples, or who call sweet death through euthanasia "mercy" because they say it is "cruel" to make a dying person suffer. And all this, some bad Catholics, they state this publicly in the name of a distorted and aberrant idea of ​​"Christian love". Those are the bad Catholics for us, indeed bad Catholics. Not those who, undoubtedly mistaken for weakness, fragility or ignorance, but also for the avalanche of contradictory news, of proclamations and denials, of changes of direction and ideas [cf.. who], everything always and strictly speaking without anyone ever admitting "we made a mistake in some evaluation", today they are terrified of being vaccinated.

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Having clarified this I continue: what I believe I can criticize in the legitimate exercise of the freedom of the children of God is the political style of dealing with these resistances to the vaccine that must not and cannot find acceptance in the Catholic Church. If you continue at this rate you do not want to hear reasons, gangrenous in the well-known clerical stubbornness, the only result will be that of cracking the filial trust of the faithful towards their bishops by making that very poor remnant of paternal authority that the Italian episcopate still retains but which seems willing to sell off with every care as soon as possible.

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With surprise we learn from the article that Bishop Cirulli regrets being attacked by Keyboard lions and which has received criticism, threats and insults from many fronts to such an extent as to push Digos to intervene in his rescue - without his having made any request - paying attention to the subversives. So I wonder, distancing oneself from the troublemakers and the disadvantaged who give free rein to violence without having the right logical arguments: It is possible that no one in the episcopal curia has suggested to the prelate to act differently, for example in a less reckless way? No one who felt obliged to make the bishop give up from a sure bad figure and from a media pillory whose sole responsibility can only be he alone?

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I say this because in the continuation of the interview with Future the most imaginative arguments worthy of the best Orwellian despotic conspiracy are reported as reasons for the media pillory. The bishop launches into describing theidentikit of the Catholic no-vax on the basis of what has been done by the newspaper The Republic in recent days [you see who], It is told: "I have the impression that there is a schism taking place", "I was able to understand that these are connected people who belong to a traditionalist world in opposition to the magisterium of Pope Francis". In short, the profile of the cattono-vax is outlined as one lobby well-organized schismatic, ultra-traditionalist, anti-bergogliana, all lace, lace and lace and - I would add - certainly of a conservative matrix and perhaps with right-wing sympathies. All this, however, is tragically and sadly false, because people frightened by the vaccine do not have a precise political connotation, as they do not belong only to the world of Catholic "gloomy traditionalism". Fear is a completely transversal phenomenon. Therefore, the so-called no-vax O anti-vax, we find them in politics on the far right as well as the far left, in the ranks of the most pushed Catholic progressivism as well as in those of the most radical Catholic traditionalism. And who does not see this, it can only give a completely distorted vision of reality, stating that fear, or if we want ignorance in the etymological sense of the term, it only belongs to a very specific category.

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Dear readers, understand why the credibility of the Church today it appears to be at an all-time low? If these are the strong arguments, it's easy to see why people no longer take us seriously but laugh at us. If everything is summed up in oppositional ideological issues then we are doing politics, propaganda, loyalty and party membership. As did the premier Mario Draghi during the last press conference that illustrated the latest anti Covid decree, also Msgr. Cirulli said that in essence the responsibility lies with the unvaccinated - be they consecrated or lay - thus facilitating divisions, creating suspicion, giving twine to the informers, stimulating tensions that will struggle to heal over time.

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And if maybe two years ago, in obedience to the words of the Pope and the Italian Episcopal Conference, the prelate would have been happy to hug a Chinese and eat an inclusive spring roll, today he would be careful not to hug a priest no-vax as a sign of relaxation and the resumption of ecclesial communion. What to say more, these are the times when everyone wishes to appear as Socratic philosophers, everyone feels strong in the assumption of the son of Sofroniscus who says that the rules are respected even when they are unjust and therefore we must do what they command us to do, even if we don't like them "either you eat this soup or you throw yourself out the window" sang Nino Ferrer.

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However, they forget that Socrates he chose to drink hemlock not on the basis of unjust laws but on a manipulated legal system, unable to respect the spirit of the law and the legislator who must provide for fair exceptions and derogations to save the integrity of man and his spirit from dangerous totalitarian drifts.

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Perhaps the next outburst of Msgr. Cirulli it will be entrusted directly to the newspaper The Republic and it will be there that we will learn from the Vatican spokesman Eugenio Scalfari that in some of his imaginative private dialogues with the Pope, vaccination will be one of the essential elements for the validity of the ministerial priesthood and the administration of the Sacraments and all this in order to have more «Love, love, love!». Of course, at this point of the narration it would not spoil the practical sense of the old communist dedicated to the house and family played by the legendary Mario Brega in the film A lot nice. Mario, widower but still capable of sacrificing himself for his only son Ruggero, does not understand the excessive «Love, love, love!» in his son's life experience, so much so that he was taken for a fascist by Fiorenza, whereupon rising to his feet he exclaims: «To me bundle? I bundle? A zoccolè, I don't know’ communist like that, to! So’ communist soììì !!!».

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there, dear readers, we are not yet accustomed to such levels of practical common sense and perhaps we will never get there, at least among the pastors of the Catholic Church.

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Laconi, 18 January 2021

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Thoughts on the concept of filial freedom in a time of pandemic, regarding certain bishops who have forgotten that they are the fathers of the vaccinated and the unvaccinated

- Pastoral care -

THOUGHTS ABOUT THE CONCEPT OF BRANCH FREEDOM IN A TIME OF PANDEMIC, ABOUT CERTAIN BISHOPS WHO HAVE FORGOTTEN THAT THEY ARE FATHERS OF VACCINATED AND UNVACCINATED

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That beautiful soul of Monsignor Cirulli loses sight of the fact that if necessary it is in his full right to impose a ban on the Catholic faithful from using condoms or birth control pills or even more so the use of morning after pill or even worse than the abortion pill. Just as it can forbid its priests to go to women or men or to ask them to scrupulously observe liturgical and canonical norms, but it cannot force the clergy and the faithful to vaccinate simply because this is beyond its function.

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Author
Ivano Liguori, Ofm. Capp.

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Franco Califano (Tripoli 1938 - Rome 2013) "Damn boredom", to open the video click on the image

On the Sunday just passed, feast of the Baptism of the Lord, at the time of the homily I reflected with my parishioners on the fact that in baptism the Christian, in addition to the theological virtues of faith, hope and charity receives above all the most precious gift of filial freedom. For us Christians, being free is a prerogative of being children. The Blessed Apostle Paul underlines this very well in his letter to the Galatians [cf.. Gal 4, 4-ss].

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Already the biblical hagiographer, in the Book of Genesis, describing the creation of man, it says that each was made in the image and likeness of God [cf.. GN 1, 26], by similarity we mean those mental qualities, moral and social values ​​proper to God, that the Creator has imprinted in the human creature differentiating it from all the other created ones. From this divine likeness it is sanctioned, in a clear and definitive way, the difference and superiority of man compared to all other creatures, including animal ones.

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We pay attention and clarify immediately a fundamental concept: the gift of filial freedom is not a personal merit that man can boast of but it is an acquired grace that we obtain from the Father (as the Letter to the Galatians will say with the Greek expression dià theōu!) in view of the incarnation of the Word, of Christ the only begotten Son, who made it possible to be children in the Son in a full and lasting way by redeeming man from that condition of sin and death on which ancient slavery was supported, as Jesus remarked before the Jews: «If therefore the Son sets you free, you will be truly free " [GV 8, 36].

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If we understand that Christian freedom it is the prerogative of the Son and of those who knew how to welcome him [cf.. GV 1,12], enough to become the legitimate heirs [cf.. RM 8,17], we can also understand the full possibility of each baptized person to relate fully to God the Father and the Holy Spirit as Christ did. Indeed, only if we are authentically children in the Son can we also exercise that full freedom which implies a recognition of a relationship with the Father as the lover and with the Holy Spirit as love.

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At the time of our baptism, therefore, God's grace gives us the gift of filial freedom just as it was given to Christ who was free before the Father and remained so in his earthly life precisely because he was a beloved son in that anointing of the Holy Spirit which is the guarantee of every perfect communion and communication with God [cf.. RM 8, 14-ss] in freedom.

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From these theological assumptions, it is not difficult to understand how Christian freedom supposes, to be such, of constant relational communication. Just as God is fully liberated in himself precisely because in his intimate mystery the most august persons of the Most Holy Trinity cannot but relate to each other in fullness - which also refers to the Word after his incarnation - so man is truly free only when he is capable of entering into communion with God and relating to creatures.

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Unfortunately, to the proven proof of the facts, to speak of Christian freedom today as a rediscovery of one's baptism and therefore as an evangelical commitment to be witnesses in the world of the freedom of the Son is not at all easy. The current pandemic health crisis has distorted the concept of freedom not only in its theological reference but also in that philosophical and social reference that underlies every civilization. In less than two years we have gone from a health crisis to a social one that has left heavy repercussions on the political and economic sphere of the country, so much so as to undermine those certainties once considered obvious. This global crisis has not spared even the faith that is experiencing a very deep crack so as to lead the freedom of the baptized faithful to drift in favor of a mirage of freedom that is made up of "benevolent concessions" that day after day mortgage filial freedom on altar of emergency, today of the health one and tomorrow of who knows what other.

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Stoically we have been able to bring sacrifice of the distance from the Sacraments, of the suspension of Holy Masses, from the remodeling of religious traditions and all in the hope of being able to start again, something that seems increasingly difficult today. Is to the outside that to enter of the Christian world, as well as the civil one, we are witnessing a continuous decrease in the concept of freedom which is curtailed to such a proportional and gradual extent with respect to the increase in the communal distance between man and man and between man and God. We assist helpless, two years now, the impossibility of creating stable relationships, frank dialogues, mature comparisons between the parties. Everything falls under the light of suspicion, of illegality, of clandestinity: we no longer see a Socratic dialogic communication that gives birth to a free and liberating truth and that recognizes in man the most beautiful work done by the Creator. The distance between individuals is palpable and in our churches we experience the desolation of the empty pews where the baptized, once beloved children, they are looking for a father who cannot be found. And paternally a part of our bishops remain closed in their own curie-fortresses to produce Manzonian cries alert and vigilance to the virus, perhaps envying the civil institutions that with a decree can prohibit the weepers some slices of social life fueling the illusion of paradises Covid free held upright by an ethereal GreenPass and from a terrorist communication that is the daughter of a freedom that has lost the reference to paternity and of a communion that is unable to meet one's neighbor.

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We men of the Church, as well as the men of the state, we are finding it very difficult to communicate with people who are no longer seen as children, brothers and citizens to protect and protect, but as categories to be labeled, good in the part of the scapegoat to whom it is right and right to put on. So then there are also the faithful in parishes and convents pro-wax e no-vax; conservatives and progressives; the traditionalists and the reformists. E, together with all this dialectic of opposition, it moves forward on the control and elimination of the opposing party, confusing the truth, with the acceptance of the unique narrative of its own line-up; freedom, with conforming to this partisan truth and the common good with what is affirmed by the majority.

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All this long reasoning it serves me as a necessary introduction to a pastoral issue that creates in me a feeling of inner sadness combined with a pitiful commiseration. As a priest and baptized I assist daily and in a systematic and methodical way, to the dismantling of the Christian freedom of so many faithful who find themselves mistreated by their pastors who now have more propensity to sanitize souls than to their sanctification. The last case in order of time is the one that concerns S. AND. Mons. Giacomo Cirulli, bishop of the Dioceses of Teano-Calvi and Alife-Caiazzo who banned the distribution of communion to those priests not vaccinated (you see who, who), but also to those deacons and laity labeled as no-vax who serve in his diocesan Church. The prelate, who apparently has a degree in medicine, as a good medical officer, he orders the draconian suspension of the pastoral liturgical service of his clergy considered to be reluctant to serum, thus creating a unique pastoral and canonical precedent that has no precedent in the history of the Church until now.

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And yes, because that beautiful soul of Monsignor Cirulli loses sight of the fact that if necessary it is in his full right to impose a ban on the Catholic faithful from using condoms or birth control pills or even more so the use of morning after pill or even worse than the abortion pill. Just as it can forbid its priests to go to women or men or to ask them to scrupulously observe liturgical and canonical norms, but he cannot force the clergy and the faithful to vaccinate simply because this is beyond his duties even if he is a medical graduate, because he as bishop was consecrated essentially to be a father who speaks to the heart of the children that Christ has entrusted to him, which must be exhorted and recovered, even in the unfortunate case in which these departed from the paternal house making a bad use of their freedom.

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We devoutly wish to give advice to Monsignor Cirulli, which is common sense advice and consists in appealing to the conscience and freedom of one's children - priests and lay people - and seeing vaccination not as a dogmatic obligation but as one of the many practicable tools that medicine suggests in this time of emergency health care together with the other appropriate treatments made available to the medical art. Or better understood: at this time, in the current state of scientific knowledge, science and medicine suggest and recommend vaccination to avoid contagion - we know and we have been told by specialists that vaccinated people can get infected -, but to avoid the devastating effects of Covid-19 with all that it can bring to the health of the individual, or to medical personnel who have been experiencing an emergency for almost two years and have to assist the hospitalized, to follow up with the entire national health system which risked collapse during the first wave.

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Suspend like this, in coercive mode the power ministerial of their own priests, until proven otherwise they are not affected by any canonical penalty, in fact requires a lockdown to the conscience of the presbyter who has the duty to rush attentively to every member of the faithful who legitimately requests his spiritual assistance. I also see a clever and malicious use by the bishop of the words spoken by the Roman Pontiff to get vaccinated. Indeed, the phrase of the Pope: "Getting vaccinated is an act of love" obviously makes sense, but it is a paternal parenesis and not a pronouncement from the throne, a dutiful exhortation, not a dogmatic pronouncement that binds in matters of faith and morals. Because, at this point, also vaccinating for other diseases can rightly be considered an act of love, as well as maintaining a healthy body or observing a healthy and morally irreproachable life. I ask, there is a need for the Pope or a bishop to understand this or exhort this? We Fathers de The Island of Patmos, that we were all three authors of a book dedicated to this delicate subject The Church and the coronavirus, we have publicly stated on several occasions that we have been vaccinated, when the vaccine was available and when it was our turn, because we have freely and consciously decided to trust science and the indications given by experts and specialists. But pay attention to the words and the meaning of the words: we did it by exercising our freedom and by deciding to trust, so we acted for act of trust, which is an action never to be confused with a act of faith, which is quite another thing. Today one seriously wonders: the science we first trusted, but above all the politics that sometimes seems to use science as a blunt instrument, he wants one of ours act of trust or one of ours act of faith? Because faith is based on dogmas, but science is not, indeed, if anything, it specializes in laughing at it, up to reaching certain currents of psychiatry that place religiosity in the context of neuroses.

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I do not seem to remember that episcopal exhortations have been made in the past to ensure that the secular or religious clergy ate or drank more moderately - in the face of the many cases of chronic alcoholism and severe obesity still present among consecrated persons - let alone the advice to practice a more sporty life, something that he would no doubt have avoided wearing, already from the years of seminar formation, the size 52 of the trousers that increases with the increase of the assignments received. And I do not want to dwell on the pitiful and delicate case of the priests who have fallen into the various addictions, something that cannot be said for clerical modesty but which from time to time comes to the fore in the news columns [you see who, who], but if anyone wants to deepen these painful issues related to the moral decay of the clergy, just read the book And Satan made him triune at Ariel S. Levi di Gualdo.

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Most Reverend Excellency what we do? We also ban ai fat people, to drunkards and employees of various kinds the care of souls because they are incapable of acts of love? We want to propose to the Congregation for the Clergy a pastoral catharism in which only the hard and pure can exercise the priestly ministry while the others are sent home? While Your Excellency thinks about it, I would like to reiterate the concrete danger of using the alibi of love free from everything and everyone as a reinforcement of one's own ideologies slogan. We have already seen legions glitterate e rainbows of men who want to convince us to the sound of Love is Love, this theme to which Ariel S and I. Levi di Gualdo we have dedicated our book: From Prozan to Prozac. At this point, if an act of love is enough to fix things, how can we still blame him? If an act of love is enough to justify everything, we also consider euthanasia as an act of love towards the dying or abortion as an act of love towards a woman who wishes to fulfill herself.

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The truth, Excellency, it does not consist in the fact that his priests are reluctant to offer their arm to the homeland to be vaccinated - considering that almost all of us Italian priests are vaccinated -, but that there is probably an obvious difficulty in relating to them. This precludes all freedom, favoring hasty limitations and tightening between the parties.

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If God did this to us every time we sin or that we deliberately disobey his will, what would become of us? What would become of God? But no, God continues to have a relationship with us, a communion proper and above all when our freedom as children is more shaky and fails. God continually sends his incarnate Word to give us that mercy made flesh which is the only one that can restore our compromised filial freedom to health.. We are free only if we are in communion, as father bishop you wait with concern and trembling for his sons, priests and lay people on the doorstep, not to circumscribe them with restrictive measures but to wrap them with that hug around the neck [cf.. LC 15, 20] which dissolves all resistance and makes it clear that the father is always such, especially when he makes a mistake, and he is the father of the vaccinated and the unvaccinated, who as a father seeks, sometimes with difficulty, the unit, it certainly does not lend itself to creating dramatic fractures and divisions. Therefore he is the father of consecrated virgins and at the same time - perhaps even more so - of women who have abortions, in need of his acceptance and his forgiveness much more than we do the consecrated virgins.

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But these of ours are Catholic speeches, perhaps obsolete and perhaps even annoying, while everything else is boring, as Franco Califano sang: but boredom, girl, girl …

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Laconi, 13 January 2021

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Euthanasia as an anthropological defeat and a modern failure of pietas and treatment

- Pastoral care of health -

EUTHANASIA AS AN ANTHROPOLOGICAL DEFEAT AND MODERN FAILURE OF PIETAS AND CARE

It would be interesting to point out, to the secularists who support euthanasia, that thanks to the work Of Crimes and Punishments of the illuminist Cesare Beccaria is beginning to be abolished, already in 1786, the death penalty by the judicial system of some states and kingdoms. Today, in the name of that same Enlightenment thought, the death penalty is reintroduced as a conquest of science and imposed as a merciful remedy no longer on public offenders but on innocent publics.

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Author
Ivano Liguori, Ofm. Capp.

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in photo: Marco Cappato. Life truly belongs to us?

The recent and indecent positions taken of some "Catholic" politicians [you see WHO] as well as some religious Sui generis [you see WHO] who support the referendum on legal euthanasia open up different and worrying scenarios on the ethics of life that concern the rights and protection of the health of the sick. "Euthanasia and assisted suicide are in fact a clear defeat of those who theorize them, of those who decide them and those who practice them " [cf.. Good Samaritan Letter, V.1; Pontifical Council for Healthcare Workers, New Charter of Healthcare Professionals, n. 170] de facto introducing the patient into that modern anthropological failure that is no longer able to recognize the beauty and dignity of human life even when it is burdened by infirmity orhandicap.

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It forces you, therefore, to share ideological drifts that increasingly encourage the culture of waste and death in which man ends up being seen and perceived only on the basis of what he can give, to what it can do and to its autonomous support within the civil community. The human being who in sickness or in handicap has lost hope for a cure sees himself disowned and limited, in a completely arbitrary way, of their quality of life by those who no longer consider it satisfactory and worthy of being in the world of the healthy and valid.

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The most evident thing in these ethical drifts it consists in the complete loss of hope which is called to illuminate the future, even when it appears uncertain. Christianity has assumed hope as a theological virtue that proceeds directly from God as his Providence operates both in the last moments of man's life as well as in the first. In Christian hope, everything is grace, even that of a sick body [See. 2 Color 12, 9] in which the sufferings of the crucified Savior shine forth [See. With the 1, 24]. Like this, if the hope in healing has been lost it is still possible to rekindle the hope of the cure which is the same that the Savior claims for himself in the person of the hungry, of the thirsty, of strangers, of the poor, of the prisoners and the sick and dying [cf.. Mt 25, 31-46]. The Mattean remark of "you did it to me" has the merit of making us understand what the piety in which all those sacred duties that man exercises towards other men are developed and which in the Gospel become providential grace in which God made man reveals himself as the subject of compassionate care. For this reason, as Christians, it is necessary to reiterate without fear of denial that euthanasia is not what one would like to believe today, that is, a worthy death but only a deceptive way of experiencing compassion and empathy towards the sick person, escaping the fatigue of taking care of him.

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The real individualism of the modern world, taken on an ordinary lifestyle, it impoverishes mutual relationships by increasing man's loneliness during the time of illness, thus leading the dying person to utter despair which makes him desire a quick and painless resolution of his own condition of infirmity by coming to choose, almost like a release, l'euthanasia. Here is the reason why today, in the face of a clouding of the most basic ethical and religious principles, the terminally ill represent today the most fragile and exposed category. We are facing a real humanitarian emergency that can no longer be ignored, since the civilization of a people and his own piety they are measured - even before the advent of Christianity - on the basis of the care taken towards the weak, the children, seniors, the sick and the dying.

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THE PROTECTION OF TERMINAL SICKS AND THE PROHIBITION OF KILLING

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It is necessary at all costs to protect the terminally ill avoiding turning the last days of their earthly life into some sort of political battle either, even worse, in a sort of social claim made by the usual familiar faces that, coincidentally, they are more attached than ever to their earthly existence. And yes, because among the many contradictions of modern secular thought, advocates of legal euthanasia wish for themselves a long life expectancy and think like perfect hypochondriacs in an attempt to ward off and exorcise diseases and health interventions. The same is true for the proponents of abortion who are born into the world thanks to mothers who are not ashamed to choose life for them, rejecting the very civil and responsible voluntary termination of pregnancy (Abortion). This alone would be enough to highlight the unreasonableness and illogicality of certain characters whose line of thinking tries to earn a prominent place in the great arena of national and foreign public opinion but which would be better set aside for the good of all.

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Leaving aside these secular contradictions, we begin to reason according to a solid Christian thought. going to the source which is the Holy Scripture that admonishes:

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"Son, do not neglect yourself in sickness, but pray to the Lord and he will heal you " [Sir 38, 9].

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This is the invitation of Sirach which is by no means a blind fideism as some might think. To say "do not neglect yourself in sickness" means two essential things: become aware of the care of one's body given freely by the Lord; take part in an action of care that is expressed within a journey of faith in the God of life and resurrection, with sacramental signs that are also therapeutic and within an active charitable action that accompanies the sick person as a traveling companion, especially when this is oriented towards the terminal phase of existence.

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Our body does not belong to us, it was given to us by God for a mission and is carried out with the collaboration of parents in the generative work. As a reality that has been granted borrowed, the body needs to be guarded and preserved from all those adverse events that threaten its integrity and physical and spiritual safety. And this does not apply only to the case of the disease but above all to the desperate euthanasia attempts which are themselves pathogenic events., before which it is necessary to question oneself starting from that fifth commandment of the Decalogue that he says: "You will not kill" [cf.. Is 20, 13].

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The commandment that forbids killing it is part of both divine and natural law. It is immutable and mandatory and no human legislator can repeal it without falling into an offense of authority and of power. This is what the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has clearly explained when it says:

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"Nobody, under any circumstances, can claim the right to directly destroy an innocent human being " [Instruction The gift of life, n. 5].

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Therefore, no human being innocent can be violated with the death procured both when it is in the womb and when it is in a sick bed. The innocence and innocence of the fetus, like that of the terminally dying person make all acts of abortion, eugenics and euthanasia pregnant with that blood of Abel that cries from the ground again vengeance before the throne of the divine judge [See. GN 4, 10].

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It would be interesting to point out, to the secularists who support euthanasia, that thanks to the work Of Crimes and Punishments of the illuminist Cesare Beccaria is beginning to be abolished, already in 1786, the death penalty by the judicial system of some states and kingdoms. Today, in the name of that same Enlightenment thought, the death penalty is reintroduced as a conquest of science and imposed as a merciful remedy no longer on public offenders but on innocent publics.

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RIGHT TO LIFE AND RIGHT TO DEATH

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Faced with these painful considerations it is necessary to reflect and leave in order to formulate a new idea of ​​quality of life, health and care. Logic has it that if the body becomes a personal possession, an item, it can also be (away)used in a selfish and despotic way, also from third parties, until its complete exhaustion, including death. Just as there cannot be a despotic and arbitrary "right to life" at any cost and at any price, there cannot even exist a "right to death" that includes euthanasia even if they are very rare and sporadic. The right to life follows the providential disposition that God predisposes, which does not intend to give life to man as an object that can be arbitrarily disposed of. Life is oriented towards an end towards which man has the responsibility to direct himself: one's personal perfection according to God's plan and call [See. Pontifical Council One heart for human and Christian promotion, Document In the framework of, n. 2.1.1.]. This is the Christian approach to life which is based on the fact that

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"Man is called to a fullness of life that goes far beyond the dimensions of his earthly existence, since it consists in participation in the very life of God " [See. Gospel of Life n. 2].

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This supernatural call-vocation beyond God constitutes the greatness and preciousness of human existence even in its terminal phase which for the believer can never be considered as an "ultimate" reality, but if anything "penultimate" because on the way to that eschatological dimension that opens up to full life in which God will be all in all [cf.. 1Color 15,20-28]. For this reason, appears evident, how the life of each individual is a sacred reality that is entrusted to us so that we guard it with a sense of responsibility and bring it to perfection in love and in the gift of ourselves to God and to our brothers: from the recognition of piety to the care and from the care to the piety.

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THE GOOD SAMARITAN AND THE HOSPITAL CHURCH

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This is why the Church in its two-thousand-year tradition has always implemented, on the escort of Christ the Good Samaritan [cf.. LC 10, 29-37], all those corporal and spiritual works of mercy that have served to help man during his earthly pilgrimage. Man who, most of the time, he finds himself having to deal with his native frailty which involves both physical and soul evils. The Good Samaritan is the icon of the custody of life and the merciful exercise of care to the end. It does not judge man's assailants but works to ensure that these do not perish, although others have already given up assisting him and giving him a hope of survival. The Samaritan takes charge of the wounded man and delivers him in turn, so that others in his stead will care for him. He is not what we today would call a caregiver, he does not operate alone but within a healing community to which the image of the inn refers. Thus we introduce a clear ecclesiological image in which the community of faith, the church, he welcomes the wounded from the hands of the Samaritan to lead him towards a timeless accompaniment: "Take care of him ... until ... my return" [LC 10, 35]. And this eschatological return is not only that of the Son of God in his glory but also the eschatological encounter in which man, ended his earthly life, it is reunited with the Creator.

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This ecclesiological vision is undoubtedly interesting that also the reigning Pontiff in his first interview with the magazine Catholic Civilization [you see WHO; WHO], recalls, defining and presenting the Church as a field hospital after a battle. This similarity which has sadly fallen away, in eight years of pontificate, within a series of clichés. By depriving this beautiful image of its original meaning, the paroxysm has been pushed by including markedly Christian terms - such as hospitality, welcome and care - within a hermeneutics emptied of the ecclesiological sense in favor of the socio-political and socio-political one. It is no coincidence that today we are surrounded by slogan that praise hospitality, to care for and take care of the abandoned, But, at the same time, we see the multiplication of slogan on euthanasia. Faced with this illogicality of thought, it becomes impossible and hypocritical to speak of unreserved acceptance, of loving and disinterested care to end up in the hospitality of the heart that claims to break down the dividing walls. It is not difficult to understand that all these things are praised for propaganda purposes and only for exclusive and certain categories of people. Impossible, therefore, the conciliation of opposites, of those who on the one hand fight for the weakest but in the name of those same weak ones are ready to propose death when the weakness of the disease makes any recovery impossible.

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TOWARDS TWO GOALS: "NO COMPASSION" AND "TAKEN CARE OF HIM" [LC 10,33-34].

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After these considerations and analyzes it seems necessary and urgent to return to the unique and true example of the Good Samaritan, which is Christ the Lord, who teaches his disciples to take care of the whole of the wounded man by introducing him to that field hospital inn which is the mother Church who, just as it generates life from the baptismal font, thus he immerses the dying person in the grace of mercy. I like to give two ideas for work that have the task of averting the temptation to euthanasia in Christians, they are not as a practice in itself but above all as an ethical vision of the end of life.

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To escape euthanasia we must have the compassion of the Good Samaritan which cannot be explained in other terms except as that maternal love that allows itself to be wounded. The Samaritan lets himself be vulnerable by that unfortunate person who appears on his way, the wounds of that man hit by the brigands are imprinted in his bowels in a kind of pitiful transverberation of the heart. He even goes so far as to risk losing his business in order to help those in front of him. There is an urgent need that leads him to with-suffer the weakness and suffering of the wounded man, just as there is a will to stay there in that moment of suffering and the cross, as we see in the example of Mary Most Holy on Golgotha. We are faced with a moral imperative that also becomes an imperative of assistance that creates a profound sensitivity towards those who are weak or injured, with the active desire to really alleviate their pains. True compassion and true compassionate take concrete actions and solutions with which it is possible to intervene and help the sick [cf.. B. Moriconi (1997), Compassion, In Dictionary of Pastoral Healthcare Theology, pp. 227-234, Ed. Camillians].

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We understand well that as Christians our pause in front of the terminally ill it can only be that of whoever wants with-suffer the natural conclusion of a human existence in which God revealed himself. If the terminal condition of the sick person does not hurt our bowels so much as to take on its weight, we will never feel the compassion of the Good Samaritan who opens up to effective human and spiritual assistance.. Aware that

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"There comes a time when there is nothing but recognizing the impossibility of intervening with specific therapies on a disease, which in a short time presents itself as mortal " [Letter Good Samaritan, I]

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The Christian begins to take charge of the dying with that maternal care which is closeness, removal of fear and abandonment, encouragement and trust in the risen Lord who conquers all mortal anguish. Only in this way will the sick feel surrounded by a loving presence, maternal, human and Christian and does not give in to the depression and anguish of those who feel abandoned to their destiny of suffering and death ask to put an end to it [Pontifical Council for Healthcare Workers, New Charter of Healthcare Professionals, n. 170].

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After having the right compassion for the dying you need to get busy with taking care of him, in fact it is always possible to cure even when it is no longer possible to heal. It is good to differentiate the skills and fields of assistance of specialist personnel, of the family and the ecclesial community. From a medical point of view, the facilities where the terminally ill are treated, the hospice, Nursing homes, they must be able to guarantee that essential medical care, palliatives that exclude any form of persistence. Same thing when the terminally ill is still in his home, doctors and specialists must be able to take action to ensure the necessary medical-nursing assistance by limiting all those conditions of pain and suffering that are connected with the terminal states of a disease. Anyway, both in healthcare facilities and in private homes, palliative care represents the best response of assistance to the physical needs of the patient and in fact avoids the euthanasia choice that reformulates the concept of care in an anticipated and medically assisted death [cf.. Pontifical Council for Healthcare Workers, New Charter of Healthcare Professionals, n. 147; John Paul II, Speech to the participants in the International Conference on Assistance to the Dying (17 March 1992), n. 5].

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Caring for the terminally ill it includes not only medical but psychological and spiritual needs, something that the Christian community must be able to do with solicitude and concern. Proclaiming the Gospel to the dying is fundamental to open to that hope that does not disappoint. Administer the sacraments of the Anointing of the Sick in time, to which the absolution of sins is annexed with a plenary indulgence, and the administration of the Holy Viaticum is the ordinary way in which a baptized Christian takes leave of this world to awaken in God.

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The exercise of charity towards the terminally ill it is realized by seeing in him the face of the suffering and dying Christ. This leads the ecclesial community to pray for the dying and ask for him, to the Eternal Father, the mercy of forgiveness and the grace of reconciliation of the whole life. It is a strong moment in which it is essential to let go of the faults of the past, the sins, the knots that have accumulated is a way to seek and give peace to each other. By forgiving the dying person's debts and allowing him to forgive ours, that mutual communion of charity is created that we all need to recognize ourselves as Christians and children of the Father who is in heaven., in which the perfection that does not operate by virtue of that logic not devoid of interests of those who do not know God becomes visible [See. Mt 5, 43-48].

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The family of the terminally ill is undoubtedly the most exposed, but also the one on which the greatest expectations of the dying fall. Dying surrounded by those we loved and who shared existence with us is an endless grace. In the same way, to be close in death to those we have loved as a parent, son, brother, friend is the most perfect form of communion of love that we can humanly realize in our earthly experience. This is why the presence of the family close to the dying person must be constant and privileged, no one can take the place of it. Despite this, the family needs to be intelligently supported in order not to succumb to the fatigue of separation from their loved one and the agony following the loss. The Christian community, as a healing community - healing community , stand side by side discreetly with these tried families, supporting them in all respects so as to imitate the solicitude of the Cyrene who helps to carry for a while the weight of the cross of Christ when he collapses to the ground. The Christian community is Servant and Healer, he is attentively present in suffering but acts in the care that is the diaconate of charity to favor integral health (salvation) of people.

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We Fathers de The Island of Patmos, on a human and priestly level we fraternally share and keep in our hearts the tender memory of numerous terminally ill patients, or of elderly people who were gradually dying out like candles that have come to an end. This is because we also share another element: anyone who really wants to do theology or deepen certain particular branches of study and research, he must always do this starting from prayer and from human material. We are Priests of Christ instituted and consecrated doctors to cure the souls of men. The youngest among us, Father Gabriele, has been dealing with issues of life and disabilities since he was a novice in the Order of Preachers. The writer of these lines has spent years of his life in the wards of a large hospital. father ariel, who has never carried out the ministry of parish priest and who has always dedicated himself to other tasks, he administered more anointings of the sick and was seated at the bedside of the sick more than often do parish priests of parishes in 10.000 baptized, if anything, because… engaged in meetings of the parish council. And when we enter a confessional, we often get out of it after hours, making up for the "lack of time" of various parish priests who, engaged in unspecified "pastoral activities", they don't have time to confess, forget that we have been consecrated priests to celebrate the Eucharistic Sacrifice, preach the Holy Gospel, to forgive sins and assist the sick and dying, everything else takes a back seat, from the meetings of the parish council to the highest theological speculations. It is on this basis that we can explain to all those who think of escaping the pain of death with euthanasia, that often in pain and suffering is contained that great wisdom which makes us better men. Solve everything by fleeing sickness and pain with a "sweet death", it means not having understood why one was born, what is worth living for and why, one day, you have to die, if anything, even suffering.

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It is not easy to talk about the salvific element of pain and suffering to this now degenerate society, but if we don't, even at the cost of not being understood, or more easily at the risk of being misunderstood, we will betray in the worst way the mission entrusted to us by Christ who defeated death and made us sharers in his resurrection.

Laconi, 25 September 2021

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Two weeks of silence and an eye saved by Grazia Pertile at the Sacred Heart of Negrar, while as theologian I meditated: what a lack of humility can cause in men of science?

- pastoral care of health -

TWO WEEKS OF SILENCE AND AN EYE SAVED BY PERTILE GRACE TO THE SACRED HEART OF NEGRAR, WHILE I MEDITATED AS THEOLOGIST: WHAT CAN CAUSE THE LACK OF HUMILITY IN THE MEN OF SCIENCE?

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For this I thank God as a man of faith, priest and theologian: making me experience directly on my skin how high the virtue of Christian humility truly is. I understood this while I was memorizing the Roman Missal in Italian and Latin, scared that, even if a similar pathology had arisen in the healthy eye, the two beloved cats of Jorge Facio Lince and mine, Hypatia and Bruno, who live in the house with us, they should have learned to live with a German shepherd, who would wear a headband with a red cross, carrying me around the street with a white cane.

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Father Ariel S.. Levi di Gualdo at the entrance to the Sacred Heart Hospital of Negrar in front of the mosaic depicting San Giovanni Calabria, founder of the work

This article I could have owned it: Reflections on my skin. Basically the best, because it is one thing to contemplate with surreal fideism a beautiful ivory crucifix that makes art and useless emotional tenderness, an account to end up participating, even to a small extent, to the crucifixion of Christ, the only way to live the true faith, which is not emotional sentimentality, it would be enough to understand the words of the Divine Master who teaches: "If anyone wants to come after me, disown yourself, take up his cross every day and follow me " (LC 9, 23).

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In the last two years I was active on all fronts: I have written many articles on The Island of Patmos, published new books (cf.. WHO), video-conferencing product, teacher's lessons (cf.. WHO), participated in television programs on the Mediaset networks. Last in series order White area the 19 May led by Giuseppe Brindisi (see WHO by the minute 01:35 following), where I will be a guest again on 9 June. but yet, behind all this hyper activity, there was something serious, to the point of inducing me to think that I had to produce as much as possible, because maybe one day I would no longer be able to do certain jobs. I even memorized the entire Roman Missal in two languages, Italian and Latin, in case one day I wasn't able to read anymore ...

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What happened? This: in July of 2019 an injury to the retina of my right eye appears. It would have been necessary to intervene with an immediate "cerclage", but believing they were doing me good they practiced a mending with laser. After a month there is a total detachment of the retina and the eye remains completely blind. The retina is then surgically reattached, after the recommended and chosen surgeon informed me: «On a risk scale from zero to ten, she is at risk eleven ".

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the surgeon and retinal researcher Grazia Pertile, director of the ophthalmology department of the Sacred Heart Hospital in Negrar, San Giovanni Calabria Foundation

The intervention is successful, even if performed - which I will discover a year later - with an outdated technique, but not for this ineffective. Even today I am grateful to the surgeon who glued my retina back on. Of course, despite having done it privately using my health insurance policy, I was operated on a kind of "chair" with local anesthesia practiced through a puncture in the eye that I do not wish even for a smuggler who transports human beings from Africa to the Italian coasts with serious risk to the lives of women and children. So I thought it worked, to the point that I didn't bother to ask: … But in this splendid five-star hotel-style private clinic, you don't even have a shred of anesthetist? Money, you spend them all in the interior furnishings to throw smoke in the eyes of the Ladies and Gentlemen of the beautiful society who come to get the cosmetic surgery touch-ups?

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The fact is illustrated in broad lines, it is useless to detail the clinical procedure, because I intend to talk about something else. I only specify that everything was aggravated by a haemorrhage in the eye that occurred due to natural causes during the operating session, which caused the damage to the photoreceptors, ie the cells of the retina that allow focusing. With the right eye, with which I saw only crooked shadows, I couldn't read and write. All made worse by an "extensive membrane" that formed a few months later on the retina.

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The surgeon who operated on me and reattached the retina, undoubtedly saving my eye from total blindness, he took care not to expose my state, which for nearly two years I ignored, after being liquidated with a verdict on which I had made a good reason: "More than this the eye will not be able to recover".

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the surgeon and retinal researcher Grazia Pertile, director of the ophthalmology department of the Sacred Heart Hospital in Negrar, San Giovanni Calabria Foundation

A very dear friend, one of several Roman clinicians with whom they are in close friendship, man of great science and experience, he himself accompanied me to an authentic international authority in the field of retinal surgery. After a series of in-depth examinations, the eminent clinician examined my eye with the manual lens for about half an hour and calmly and mercilessly gave me the whole story: from the mending laser to be avoided until the intervention is carried out well, the haemorrhage that had been silenced and so on. Concluded the great expert in retinal surgery: "Personally, in this already very treated eye, I would not put my hand to it, because the less you touch the better, But …".

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Needless to say: an eminent scholar of the retina and a great leader, he could tell me in front of a couple of his student surgeons that someone else might be able to do what they would not have dared to do out of understandable prudence? That simple "but ..." was enough to let me indirectly understand what cannot always be said directly. However, I am also a student of a long-time diplomat in the service of the Holy See, who in the field of diplomacy has educated me properly in long years of filial relationship.

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Time ago my dentist's husband had spoken to me in tones of wonder about Doctor Grazia Pertile, director of the ophthalmology department of the Sacred Heart Hospital in Negrar, San Giovanni Calabria Foundation, in the province of Verona (cf.. WHO). This distinguished specialist and well-known researcher of European fame, had saved his eye later 7 surgery performed in a disastrous way by renowned surgeons, or at least of fame on the cards… political. And the damage that was caused to him was such that from evening to morning he operated on it urgently, while the eye was now about to go into necrosis. My decision, jump in the car and in June of 2020 I go to Negrar where I pay a visit with Doctor Mauro Sartore, who reveals himself to me as an angel of God and who after all the necessary tests tells me that the damage to the photoreceptors is currently irreversible, but by removing the extensive retinal membrane and correcting the previous surgery, vision can significantly improve. In October, I am visited by Doctor Grazia Pertile who reaffirms the diagnosis of her collaborator and offers me the intervention, also because otherwise, the eye, it would have been doomed to total blindness within a few years or more.

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Mauro Sartore, retinal surgeon of the staff of Grazia Pertile, ophthalmology department of the Sacred Heart Hospital of Negrar, San Giovanni Calabria Foundation

The 24 May I made the pre-admission, the 25 I was operated on and the 26 resigned. I then went to Lake Maggiore with my friends de The Island of Patmos Enrico and Liliana, who gave me days of splendid convalescence in their villa. I write this article today, in my hotel room in Valpolicella, after having carried out the post-operative check-up this morning with Doctor Mauro Sartore.

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When I walked into the operating room to Negrar, before my eyes one appeared team fully composed of several people, with all due respect to the no-roast smoke of a private clinic that in the outer frame looked like a five-star hotel, where, however, they shot me a puncture in the eye to give me a local anesthesia. A completely different story at the Sacred Heart of Negrar, where lying on the cot, not on some kind of armchair, no one approached me wild pointer, but the anesthetist who gave me total anesthesia, during which I was also intubated. I remember falling asleep while acting: I thank God Almighty and you, brothers, because I have sinned exceedingly in thought, verb, works, and omissions (I confess to almighty God and to you brothers, that I have sinned much in thoughts, words, works and omissions ...) and that I woke up saying "Jesus Christ be praised» (Praised be Jesus Christ). And a few days later I fully understood how much I had to praise Jesus Christ.

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A few days after surgery, with the eye still clouded, I already see all the perfectly straight lines and outlines. I distinguish and read the characters of the large letters, those of the billboards, signs and book covers, that before I did not see or read.

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The Doctor Grazia Pertile she is a very reserved woman, pronounces a few words. His is a job that is not done with words, useful and indispensable for other kinds of scientific practices. It's a job, his, of pure action, an authentic operating room monster with a more unique than rare dexterity. It is I who have always been in close contact with the most delicate spheres of the human being, I immediately understood the kind of blue-eyed angel I was in front of. So I just played on his name, pulling out of theAve Maria only two but incisive words: «Full of Grace» (full of grace). Yup, I greet you Woman full of grace, able to truly put to good use the extraordinary grace that God has placed in your hands.

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Entrance to the Sacred Heart Hospital of Negrar with the statue of San Giovanni Calabria

Lours Patmos Island hasn't published any articles in the last few weeks because it coincides with me, our Capuchin editor Father Ivano Liguori also had health problems that led to fifteen days of hospitalization. A month and a half ago he suffered from right migraine pain with ipsilateral tingling paresthesias and ptosis in the right eye, who required hospitalization in neurology for thorough investigations, having been a patient with two autoimmune diseases for about four years, one to the kidneys (an interstitial nephritis) and one to the liver (a primary biliary cholangitis). Like this, Father Ivano and me, from one end of Italy to the other we have been absorbed by health events. Meanwhile, Father Ivano continued neurological tests for days to keep ptosis in his right eye under control, improved but not fully resolved yet, I was about to carry out surgery on the retina of my right eye, occurred through a hospitalization of only two and a half days, which, however, involved preparation and convalescence. This has been our situation for the past few weeks, we make it public today to clarify our silence, adding to the whole a very positive fact: in the month of May dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, eighty million visits to our magazine were exceeded during the last four years of publishing and publishing activity. Even more so, do not think that the Devil had to somehow put a hand in it?

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Telling this story of mine it almost involved a violence exerted on myself. Each of us has the right to their own privacy. However, this story of mine is the paradigm of a very ancient human drama that we all have to deal with ever since Adam and Eve committed original sin., which I remember was a sin of pride, so serious as to alter the perfect balance of the world created by God, but above all of man himself, made in the image and likeness of the Divine Creator, who previously did not know about physical decay, the illness, pain, old age and death, all consequences of that great sin of rebellion, of that pride of which the lack of humility has always been the favorite daughter.

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research on the artificial retina conducted by Grazia Pertile

From bricklayer to designer, from the plumber to the carpenter, from the manager at the chef and go on to follow, when man is faced with something he is unable to do, often begins by saying: "It is not possible, It can not be done". I do not say almost always or of practice, but often those who respond in this way know very well that certain things are possible to do. But for no reason would he admit that others are capable of doing what he is unable to do. Of course, however serious they may be, the damages or incapacities of certain craftsmen and technicians are almost always limited. However, when attitudes of similar pride generating blind lack of humility are put in place by an oncologist or a surgeon, what can happen? Our Capuchin editor Father Ivano Liguori, specialist in health pastoral care, who for years served as a chaplain in a large hospital, our young Dominican editor Father Gabriele Giordano M. Scardocci, great scholar on the theological and ecclesiological level of the problem of disabilities, how many cases that resulted in the disaster have they known? I'll take it too, who as a priest have always been close to and dedicated to assisting the terminally ill and disabled, reiterating at every turn that we priests who have tried their hand at research studies and high theological speculations must have more to do with human material than ever, except to otherwise generate monsters of inhumanity that live in the hyperuranium of ecclesiastical universities, drowned in the world of the unreal and in the spasmodic search for career successes and self-affirmation.

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When we talk about the virtue of Christian humility, we priests and theologians certainly do not mean the beguine or the wrong-necked dream Catholic who pretends not to feel worthy or up to par. Humility is quite another: it is the virtue of the great. Only adults can confront their human limitations every day, thus fleeing the most harmful forms of inhumanity, those who carry their egocentrism or their hypertrophic narcissism above the very value of human life. Here then is the heart surgeon who, despite knowing perfectly the existence of a particularly good colleague who has specialized for years in that specific heart malformation, prefers to say "you can't do anything else ... you can't do more than this ... get over it ...", not to say that the patient could be saved by other hands. The same is true for certain oncologists, or for certain retinal surgery specialists and so on.

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the ophthalmology staff of Grazia Pertile, Sacred Heart Hospital of Negrar

And we want to talk of clinical barons which usually surround themselves with half notches, having to shine with its own light? Or forget as many half notches placed as assistants to distinguished clinicians at the suggestion of companies and banks that finance foundations and research institutes? What happens next, to the sick attracted by the mirage of the great luminary, when they go to his ward where they end up being operated on by some of his mediocre assistants? The world of the clinic is quite different, of the surgery and research of Doctor Grazia Pertile, who does not fear shadows on the star that she is but who has formed a staff of surgeons who are all very good. Another world, in the midst of so many clinical things from the other world that often take you away from the life of this earthly world decades in advance.

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For this I thank God as a man of faith, priest and theologian: making me experience directly on my skin how high the virtue of Christian humility truly is. I understood this while I was memorizing the Roman Missal in Italian and Latin, scared that, even if a similar pathology had arisen in the healthy eye, the two beloved cats of Jorge Facio Lince and mine, Hypatia and Bruno, who live in the house with us, they should have learned to live with a German shepherd, who would wear a headband with a red cross, carrying me around the street with a white cane.

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On my path, between so much scientific and omissive arrogance and pride, but I have known mine Ave Maria, the Woman full of grace, the Doctor and researcher on retinal surgery Grazia Pertile. And I fully understood the theological and salvific value of Christian humility, the one that makes you great and that saves your soul from eternal damnation.

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from Negrar in Valpolicella, 3 June 2021

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THANKS PERTILE EXPLAINS THE AVANT-GARDE TREATMENTS FOR RETINA PATHOLOGIES

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Quantum theory and the miracle of the Eucharist, walking between science and faith in the company of Niel Bohr and St. Thomas Aquinas

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THE QUANTUM THEORY AND THE MIRACLE OF THE EUCHARIST, WALKING BETWEEN SCIENCE AND FAITH IN THE COMPANY OF NIEL BOHR AND SAN TOMMASO D’AQUINO

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God is the God who enters into relationship with us and who listens to us, he sees us, scrutinizes us, it tastes us and touches us. What this happens for us through the miracle of the altar, also called miracle of miracles: the Most Holy Eucharist, in which Jesus Christ is present in the body, blood, soul and divinity. And if it is really present, substantially and truly, in his Eucharistic moment he enters into a relationship with us.

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Author:
Gabriele Giordano M. Scardocci, o.p.

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A few days ago, while I was preparing articles, a friend introduced a new discussion on an ancient theme, but always full of reflections: science and faith. I have already spoken about it at various times with reference to the topic of vaccines. My friend gave me a nice article written by the Jesuit Paolo Beltrame the 4 March and titled: If the quanta shed light on theology. Featured on La Civiltà Cattolica with the title Maybe God plays dice?

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I was very pleased read this article, which also reminded me of my university years when I too studied the subject of philosophy of science for about a year, studying the beautiful text of Werner Heisenberg, Physics and Philosophy, to then study quantum theory in depth, although he did not go into mathematical terminology [N.d.R. Before joining the Order of Friars Preachers, Father Gabriel attended the degree courses in philosophy at the University of Rome La Sapienzaa]. The Jesuit Paolo Beltrame offers a reflection-bridge between quantum theory and Trinitarian theology. I leave you the full reading of the article which does not require excessive skills in either physics or philosophy.

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This quote struck me in the article attributed to the Danish physicist Niehl's Bohr Nobel Prize in 1922 for studies on the atom, who said:

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«[…] the phenomena exist as observed and as they enter into a relationship with the measurement apparatus ".

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Perhaps it will seem far from our perspective. Perhaps it will seem like a philosophical concept. But in fact this is also a fact of ordinary experience. Whenever we know something, from knowing the amount of money to pay at the supermarket to get groceries, at the times of Holy Masses, then coming to the great life choices, how to know if we can trust that person or not, there is always a relationship between us and the known object. The known object closes itself to us because it is observed by our senses that measure it. It becomes evident to us and to all who observe and measure it. Of course, not all reality is a measurable and calculable phenomenon. Man is not a mere meter. But the whole reality is still studied, learned, including because it is related to us. St. Thomas Aquinas said that then the truth of a certain datum is an adjustment between the mind that knows that datum and the datum itself, that is, adjustment between the intellect and reality.

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Because therefore I feel I can share the thoughts of Father Paolo Beltrame about the links of this theory with theology and faith? In fact, the Jesuit writes that the whole Trinity is relationship. A Classical Doctrine for Scholastic Theology:

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«The Trinity is relationship in itself, relationship with the universe, and relationship with all living beings, sentient or not ".

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This also opens up our way of faith and prayer. God is the God who enters into relationship with us and who listens to us, he sees us, scrutinizes us, it tastes us and touches us. What this happens for us through the miracle of the altar, also called miracle of miracles: the Most Holy Eucharist, in which Jesus Christ is present in the body, blood, soul and divinity. And if it is really present, substantially and truly, in his Eucharistic moment he enters into a relationship with us.

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Think also of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, when Jesus is present in Person Christi in the priest and says at that moment «Take and eat […] take and drink ". And when we take on the Eucharistic species, to touch us first, relationally, is Christ God. While little by little we are transformed into Him.

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Let's think about moments of doubt and darkness for which some great miracles have brought priests and faithful back to the Eucharistic faith, as the Eucharistic miracle of Bolsena, which is by no means "presumed" and "reproducible in the laboratory", as yesterday our Father Ariel S denied with pain and embarrassment. Levi di Gualdo in a note - yes we Fathers of The Island of Patmos fully shared - replying to an unfortunate post published by a priest from Palermo on Facebook. It's still: think of Eucharistic adoration, how silent, majestic and tremendous is the God Christ who is there to listen to us. It is we who enter his sacramental "field of vision". We can give him all our fears, all our hopes, all our dreams. We can rest them on his Eucharistic heart, his Sacred Heart and He listens to us in His Silence.

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Perhaps we had never thought about all this. But ultimately Lent is also a deepening and a return to these certainties of faith. Let's take advantage of it to rediscover these treasures of faith, thanking both Bohr and Aquinas for helping us rediscover the beauty of the relational uniqueness between God and the miracle of miracles: the Most Holy Eucharist, which is a miracle of "Christ's reality", not "alleged miracle".

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Rome, 8 March 2021

John of God, Saint of Charity

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That light that pervades and disintegrates all limits in this society in which the culture of death tries to prevail over life: Paolo Palumbo and his history of S.L.A.. changed to "Only Light Around". And in line the extraordinary band of "Thieves of wheelchairs"

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THAT LIGHT THAT PERVIVES AND THAT DISINNS EVERY LIMITS IN THIS SOCIETY IN WHICH THE CULTURE OF DEATH TRIES TO PREVAIL OVER LIFE: PAOLO PALUMBO AND HIS HISTORY OF S.L.A.. MUTED IN "ONLY LIGHT AROUND". AND IN LINE THE EXTRAORDINARY BAND OF "WHEELCHAIR THIEVES"

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The red tape to get what is a right of the disabled, such as a wheelchair or stairlift, invalidity and accompanying pensions so low that they do not in any way cover the health costs they have to bear, they are all realities with which disabled people and their families have to live together every day, as they sing us the rock music the mythical ones Wheelchair thieves.

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Author:
Gabriele Giordano M. Scardocci, o.p.

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Paolo Palumbo, sick of S.L.A.. (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) guest at the Sanremo Festival in the season 2017

Incredible as the opening words of John's Gospel both dense with theological and spiritual meanings and at the same time how these meanings continue to illuminate our lives of faith interwoven with a daily uncertainty. Basically it was what the Apostle John wanted, when he composed his Gospel: show that the Incarnation was a true fact, concrete, real, so that this reality could break into our lives to change them once and for all:

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True light came into the world,
the one that enlightens every man.
It was in the world
and the world was made through him;
yet the world did not recognize him (GV 1, 9-10).

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This is the true encounter of faith, with those who transmit the data of the faith of the Incarnation, the one we celebrate every Christmas, even if we forget it too often. Because the Incarnation is the revealed mystery of a Light that pervades humanity in the darkest night. In the darkness of the soul, the torch of the Light of Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Word, it comes to burn and give clarity and warmth in the glacial cold that has reached the point of division of the soul.

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There are obviously those who did not want this Light. He turned away. There are those who therefore rejected Jesus and sentenced him to death. It happened in the history of you and it continues to happen. Even today that Christ's action continues in His Church, there are those who prefer to plot in the shadow of sin, of selfishness, of violence and murder, as I have already spoken through the case of Willy Monteiro in a previous article of mine [see WHO]. but yet, unlike many who have not recognized it, however, there is someone who wanted to take the Light of the Incarnate Word. Although for the perfectionist and materialistic mentality of the world Jesus Christ, today, would be considered a loser.

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Paolo Palumbo, believer and sufferer of ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), he wanted to tell his story in a wonderful book entitled: My eyes are enough to fly.

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In front of Paul who lives with this ugly disease since he had 18 year old, I can already imagine the supercazzole of some adult Catholic who is wondering why he didn't immediately ask for euthanasia, because after all «what life would that be?», «Because all those sufferings?», «Why deny him an act of freedom?». Yet Paul's whole life is a response to this immense and inhuman sea of ​​nonsense dictated by the culture of death.. Who reads his posts, it not only comes out of Hitler's euthanasia schemes, but he finds himself catapulted into a positive reality, full of joy and so much faith that makes you reflect and question several times, a reality entirely filled with the Light of the Risen One.

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But let's go in order and start from the beginning: the 10 September 2016, when Paolo was eighteen he was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, a progressive neurodegenerative disease affecting motor neurons, or the nerve cells of the brain and spinal cord capable of regulating the contraction activity of the voluntary muscles. When they hear the news, family members fall into a state of shock. In fact, Paolo appears to be the youngest individual affected by this disease, the parents and the brother do not know how to face this very hard test to which they are called. But in the meantime he amazes them all right away by showing incredible strength and positivity. Its strength lies above all in an optimism generated by the grace of God and by the light of Christ that shines in the darkness, who have not won it (cf.. GV 1,5). And so did Paul, his illness abbreviated with the acronym ALS, it goes so far as to rename it: Only Light Around!

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It's hard not to fall in love with Paolo after reading his words, because it is a true force of nature elevated by grace, a concentrate of vitality and stubbornness. In every word of the book you can see how strong his personality is. May, he let himself be overwhelmed by the disease, indeed, with his life he defeats her every day. Nothing is impossible for him, because he began to live from the perspective of memory resurrection, in that dimension of life that overcomes and defeats every death. And so, filled with Trinitarian Light, Paul offers us a masterful lesson on how to deal with our weaknesses. In fact, he himself writes that we are the only ones who impose limits on us, because they are only in our head. Suffice it to say that Paolo took the stage in Sanremo, who met the Supreme Pontiff Francis, the President of the United States of America Barack Obama and the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella to talk to him about the harsh reality with which disabled people live. Paolo guided a drone through his eyes and invented a way to make people like him feel the flavors of food, due to dysphagia, he can no longer have the pleasure of doing it. And these are just a few of the many things he has done since that fateful one 10 September, when his diagnosis was formulated as a final sentence.

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Paolo Palumbo is an extraordinary person, a true gift of God to humanity, perhaps the only one who is not yet fully aware of it is he, animated by such a great faith that every day gives him the courage to face the many difficulties that his serious illness, but above all society, they place in front of him, moving forward without fear, moved by the culture of life, not from the culture of death.

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Then, if in the story of this radiant life we want to look for a dark out of tune, which, however, completely disregards Paul's illness, the social impact is usual, because that's where there are a lot of things to fix. The reality that should bring help to the disabled, unfortunately it hasn't changed for thirty years.

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The red tape to get what is a right of the disabled, such as a wheelchair or stairlift, invalidity and accompanying pensions so low that they do not in any way cover the health costs they have to bear, they are all realities with which disabled people and their families have to live together every day. And even at this juncture, Paolo never pulled back, together with his inseparable brother Rosario he faced many battles with a "hard face" to assert his rights and those of all the disabled. It's a pity that, as usual, many made promises to him and then abandoned him. Or as Paul says: "The limits are only and only those that we ourselves impose". Therefore, dear friends of The island of Patmos, we draw from the story of Paolo Palumbo the courage to ask God for his Trinitarian Light, that pervades and disintegrates all our limits and all our pride. And for us too, the era of the Only Light Around will begin, the era in which we will become men alive and strong in faith, with the Life and Joy of the Risen One.

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Rome, 3 March 2021

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(With the collaboration of Alessandra Fusco, author of Theological club)

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THE MYTHICAL THIEVES OF WHEELCHAIRS IN "DISTROFICHETTO"

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The soothsayer Tiresias and Christianity: the reality of disability, between joy and hope

— Theologica —

THE SOOTER TIRESIA AND CHRISTIANITY: THE REALITY OF DISABILITY, BETWEEN HOPE AND JOY

The disability, certainly falls within the theme of suffering, of those who are afflicted and who will be comforted, according to the evangelical beatitude. Persons affected by disabilities are fully included in those who are welcomed into the bosom of Trinitarian love. The world of culture, of philosophical and anthropological reflection has always been fascinated and at the same time shaken by this theme.

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Author:
Gabriele Giordano M. Scardocci, o.p.

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Ulysses and the soothsayer Tiresias

One of the strong themes which involve a lot on an emotional and intellectual level every faithful, by the individual believer, to the priest, from the man of culture to the theologian, it is certainly the issue of disability. To be precise, there is no disability in the abstract, but there are people with physical or mental disabilities, which can be congenital, innate or acquired.

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I would like to sketch biblical-theological reflections on the theme of disability. I am aware, together with the whole Christian tradition, that the mystery of human evil and suffering remains a mystery and can never be fully disclosed. But it can be contemplated, scrutinized with an eye of faith, hope and charity and be placed in the highest and greatest plan of God's Plan.

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In this article first of all we will make some historical considerations on one of the most famous and oldest disabled people in history, the soothsayer Tiresias. Subsequently, we will move on to the theme of suffering in the Christian sphere.

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A DISABLED PERSON KNOWN TO ANTIQUITY. TIRESIA, BLIND SOOTER.

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The disability, certainly falls within the theme of suffering, of those who are afflicted and who will be comforted, according to the evangelical beatitude. Persons affected by disabilities are fully included in those who are welcomed into the bosom of Trinitarian love. The world of culture, of philosophical and anthropological reflection has always been fascinated and at the same time shaken by this theme. So much so that she has recently allowed herself to be questioned by disability, trying to build a reflection. First of all I would like to point out the text by Gian Antonio Stella: SeveralThe long battle of the disabled to change history, recently published by the well-known journalist of Corriere della Sera. With a journalistic slant, Stella tries to do a excursus starting from different historical figures of people with disabilities who have really proposed their innovative experience for the time of history in which they lived. I would not like to dwell on this text though [1].

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For some time the Sicilian culture it has lost one of its most fruitful writers, Andrea Camilleri. Almost like a testament, along with some books now out, the author of Porto Empedocle, known for creating the character of Inspector Montalbano, has published a text entitled Conversations about Tiresia. It is a small booklet that faithfully reproduces the text of the homonymous show staged last June 2018 and played by Camilleri himself.

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The central theme of the text, as the title says, is the figure of the soothsayer Tiresias. Legendary figure, of which little is known. Of course, of him, it is known that he is originally from Thebes, has a daughter named Manto, she guesses too, but above all that he is blind, or as we would say today: blind. The play is a small one excursus from irony, mockery and a few digs at today's world, how this figure has been described, mocked and at the same time loved and respected over the centuries. notoriously, Greek antiquity produced a series of sources on Tiresias. The most interesting thing to note is that in a pre-Christian antiquity, who had a very difficult relationship with the disabled, a physically disabled figure such as Tiresias has instead remained alive in the writing of these authors. Of course, the figure of the Theban soothsayer, it is especially interesting for a cultural reflection on disability.

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The Pseudo Apollodorus he tried to explain where Tiresias' blindness originated. So he reported three narratives, in its Library; the second and third narratives are particularly interesting[2], also told theatrically in Camilleri's text. In the second narrative, the one according to Apollodorus, Tiresia is the son of Evereo and the Nymph Cariclo: the blindness comes from the punishment of Athena that Tiresias saw naked taking a bath; then Cariclo intervened and asked for mercy for his son. Athena did not remove the blindness of the wretch see, but joined in the ability to be a soothsayer. The third narrative Apollodorus takes it up from the Greek poet Hesiod, and it is the most complex, because it inserts other elements. Tiresias meditated while walking on Mount Citerone: here he saw two snakes in the act of sexual union and then in disgust he decided to trample and kill the female. As soon as the lustful asp was crushed, magically Tiresias changed from man to woman. This image, it induces Camilleri to put in the mouth of Tiresias a theological consideration linked to snakes:

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“As a teenager, I loved taking long solitary walks on the Citerone and one day, suddenly, while I was sitting on a stone, I saw two large coiled snakes rushing towards me in the act of reproduction. I was lost in thought, for this I reacted as I never should have. Why with snakes, on Citerone, one had to be careful. In order to possess Persephone, Zeus changed into a serpent and Cadmus also "asserted himself" for his escapades. So in those reptiles a god could hide "[3].

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We will come back to this detail shortly. We observe how Tiresias is truly wise: that is, he is able to go beyond the material aspect and grasp the divine nature of even such an animalistic act as sexual union. However, proceeding with the narration, we know that later the Theban soothsayer became a man again, but his misfortune was not over. Indeed, in an indefinite period, Zeus and Hera quarreled and often found themselves divided by a controversy: if in the act of intercourse the man or the woman felt more pleasure. They could not come to any conclusions because in fact the two main positions confronted each other strongly: Zeus, in fact he claimed it was the woman, while Era was the man. To settle the dispute they decided to turn to Tiresias, considered the only one who could have solved it since he had tested both the male and female nature. Perhaps it would have been better if Tiresias had followed the old adage of not putting a finger between husband and wife[4]. Ma, for that time, he was not careful about this. So, once summoned by the two quarrelsome gods to resolve the overrun problem, replied that sexual pleasure consists of ten parts: the man only tries one and the woman nine, therefore a woman feels a pleasure nine times greater than that of a man. Tiresias thought of answering thus doing Hera a favor, believing that the goddess had answered according to her own reasoning. The goddess, instead, she was furious that Tiresias had revealed that secret: and so it blinded him. Instead Zeus, contrary to his wife's reaction, he decided to repair the damage suffered, and empowered Tiresias to foresee the future and the gift of living for seven generations. And this, in the Greek perspective, it implied having a practically eternal life.

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Here then are the three elements highlighted in Tiresias' disability: blindness follows the punishment of knowing a deep secret of man. Tiresia, a bit like Prometheus, he is to blame for having ventured to guess and reason, get beyond the achievable: therefore of having entered the highest spheres of the intimacy of man and woman. Of having been able to dissolve the very secret of the total donation of man to woman and vice versa, therefore of their profound identity. At the same time, Tiresias entered the deep secret of bodily pleasure and the origin of life. He really couldn't stand this affront. Like this, he thinks he is displeasing Tiresias, blinding him: but doing so actually takes it away from the view of material things and leaves it forever to the view of information, higher notions and concepts. I dare say that Tiresias can be the slave in the Platonic cave who, freed from the snares of material visions, finally sees the light of Ideas., in the eternity of timeless truth. However, I do not want to enter into a platonic analysis.

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Returning instead to the disability of Tiresias is added, with the action of Zeus, the gift of foresight and eternal life. The anthropological masterpiece of Tiresias the Theban is definitively finished. The disability, so condemned, so stigmatized in the Greek world, and instead, in Tiresia, loaded with a set of extraordinary gifts donated by the gods[5]. So the lack of light on everyday things matters little.

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Tiresias knows the fact present in her most intimate secrets. The same applies to future events: knows what is deeper, what is most sought after by every Greek man, philosopher, mathematician, astronomer or historian. The scholar Paolo Scarpi writes about this:

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«[…] Tiresias' blindness is actually the condition for him to fulfill his role as a soothsayer […] The three reasons presented in the Library, […], in reality they appear connected by a common denominator represented by the optical code on which the story is built. […] sight enters directly into question, configuring itself as a transgression of a code of behavior enunciated by Callimaco […] (the laws of Cronus thus establish who sees an immortal against his will, will pay a great price for this view)»[6]

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In confirmation of this it seems interesting to note what the Odyssey of the Theban diviner. Homer offers an important task to Tiresias, in fact in the tenth canto we read:

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"To ask the soul of the Theban Tiresias,

the blind soothsayer, whose precordi are firm:

to him only Persephone gave even when he was dead,

the faculty to be wise; the others are wandering shadows "[7]

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Ulisse, nell’Ade, he is forced to look for Tiresias, to find out about the way back to Ithaca. In the verses of the Homeric poem, we read between the lines that only Tiresias are granted the extraordinary gifts that make him so wise. I add a couple more elements: in Tebaide, the poet Stazio describes that Tiresias, deaf-mute and blind at the same time, retains its extraordinary powers. Who, physical disability, it is even more pronounced, nevertheless wisdom and prophecy remain. And they will have a dramatic role in Sophocles.

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Nell’Oedipus Re, Tiresias is called prophesying also the famous incest between Oedipus and Jocasta and the killing of Laius: in this tragedy the prophecy of the blind is even an element of help in the discovery of a moral action condemned by time. The contribution of Tiresias becomes fundamental in the dissolution of the Oedipus drama.

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Returning and concluding the reading of Camilleri's text, I find a splendid poem dedicated to Tiresias by the poet Thomas Sterne Elliott

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«I Tiresias, although blind, button between two screws,

old man with withered female breasts, I can see

at the purple hour, the hour of the evening that comes

on the way back, and bring the sailor home from the sea,

I can see the typist at home at tea time, clears breakfast,

turns on the stove and takes out canned food.

Outside the window dangerously hung out to dry

Its combinations touched by the last rays of the sun,

on the sofa (his bed at night) they are crowded

socks, slippers, shirts and corsets.

I Tiresias, old man with shriveled boobs,

you perceive the scene, and predicted the rest -

I too expected the expected guest.

His, the pustular young man, he arrives,

employee of a small rental agency, with a single glance

baldanzoso,

one of the people to whom the security is

like a top hat to an enriched peasant.

The time is now right, as he conjectures,

lunch is over, she is bored and tired,

try to engage her in caresses

which are not rejected, even if unwanted.

Excited and determined, he attacks all of a sudden;

exploring hands meet no defense;

his vanity requires no answer

and takes indifference as a welcome.

(And I Tiresias have pre-offered everything

What was done on this same sofa or bed;

I who sat under the walls of Thebes

and I walked among the humblest dead).

[…]

Then I came to Carthage

Burning burning Burning burning

O Lord You take me

O Lord You seize

Burning[8]

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The analysis of Tiresias' disability it therefore shows how disability has a contradictory value in the pre-Christian world: in which a relationship of damnation is highlighted, stigma, removal e, on the other, almost instead a state of elevation to higher knowledge. The theme of disability, for the Greeks it therefore called for a sapiential knowledge of the present, a prophetic knowledge of the future, a call to eternal life (certainly not of the same characteristics as the Christian Kingdom of God). Obviously, the aspect totally absent in Tiresias' disability, as indeed to all Greek reflection before the coming of Christ, it is obviously the link between divine and human activity: that relationship between grace and nature that will only subsequently be probed by Catholic theology.

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In fact, Tiresias suffers from disability in his human nature as a punishment: it is not explained by the Greek myths in what way, after obtaining the disability, his person is brought, through disability, to a path of improvement and moral elevation with the help of the Gods. The disability, in Tiresia, in short, it is a special epistemological methodology but not one of sanctification. A special way of knowing but not of raising oneself to a relationship with the sacred. On the other hand, it is completely different in character, the sense of physical suffering, and therefore also a visual impairment, since the advent of Jesus Christ: all disabilities are part of the affliction and suffering love of Christ. They can therefore be grouped under the great category of suffering.

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AFFLICT BUT INTIMALLY UNITED IN THE SUFFERING LOVE OF JESUS

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One thing is certain. About Christianity, it is founded by Jesus and it is a religion of joy; indeed, Christianity, it started with a joyful imperative. «Kaire / Rejoice Maria!» [9] so the archangel Gabriel greeted the adolescent Mary. We certainly recognize with Joseph Ratzinger that "Christianity is therefore the faith of joy"[10]. but yet, within the path of a Catholic faith that is joyful, it does not escape some particularly delicate issues such as suffering, penance and pain. Let us think for a moment that in the journey of the Catholic Church there is a great period of penance and asceticism: Lent. This is because Lent is above all a time of conversion, but also a time of desert and reflection. In that period there is an invitation to linger, in our personal prayer or meditation, on those issues that are ordinarily difficult to assimilate and deal with, like sin, the death, the illness, pain. Suffering is a very sensitive issue. Above all it is delicate because it is experienced by men and women. Theme that we have all touched firsthand. These men are suffering. Therefore they are afflicted. In fact, one of the themes that the Old Testament also speaks to us about is suffering. Let's think, for example, of the story in the book of Job. Uright omo, today we will say a pious, a decent and very devoted person. The Lord, At that time, it allows the devil to be tried in moral suffering, we remember in fact that all his children were killed; so, material, we remember that he lost all his possessions; finally physics, we remember that he fell seriously ill with leprosy and was isolated from everyone, except from four friends.

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In Job, according to the exegetes, we find four typically human reactions. The first is acceptance (cf.. Gb 1,22). He peacefully accepts that all this comes from God. At the same time, he also demands from him a kind of return in the future. The second reaction, it is rebellion (cf.. Gb 3, 1). He will even wish to die. It is also a typical reaction of today's sick people: it is a desire for tranquility and peace. The third reaction is custody (cf.. Gb 40). Job entrusts himself to God recognizing his littleness, one's being created creature, with respect to God the uncreated creator. So he truly relies on the Creator because he recognizes that he was proud and pretentious towards him. Fourth reaction, the unearthly reward (Gb 42,7). Job is given back all that he had lost in a double way [11].

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Job is an afflicted one. God after a journey of conversion, of purification and growth is consoled by God. I was very impressed when I too hear the voice of an afflicted one. An afflicted one a few years ago: but that in his today, as today it has been abandoned by all. For this I would like now let you hear the voice of that kind of afflicted that, unlike Job, He did not make it.

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"I lived (male) for thirty years, someone will say that it is too little. That someone is not able to determine what the limits of tolerance are, because they are subjective, not objective. I tried to be a good person, I've made a lot of mistakes, I have made many attempts, I tried to make sense and purpose using my resources, to make an art of discomfort. But the questions never end, and I'm tired of hearing it. And I'm sick of pormene too. I'm sick of making efforts without getting results, fed up with criticism, fed up with job interviews like unnecessary graphic designer, tired of wasting feelings and desires for the other gender (who obviously doesn't need me), tired of envying, sick of wondering what it's like to win, of having to justify my existence without having determined it, fed up with having to meet everyone's expectations without ever having met mine, tired of putting a good face on bad luck, to feign interest, to delude myself, to be made fun of, of being pushed aside and being told that sensitivity is a great quality. […] Nothing can be expected from this reality. You can't expect a job, one cannot expect to be loved, recognition cannot be expected, you cannot expect to expect security, a stable environment cannot be expected. […] I entered this world as a free person, and as a free person I got out of it, because I didn't like it even a little. Enough with the hypocrisies. […] I know this seems crazy to you, but it is not. It's just disappointment. The urge has passed: not here and not now. I cannot impose my essence, but my absence does, and absolute nothingness is always better than a whole where you cannot be happy doing your destiny. […] Forgive me, mum and dad, if you can, but now I'm home again. I'm fine"[12].

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It is terrible to read such lines. It is almost impossible to empathize with the pain of a young person who wants to take his own life. It is absolutely impossible to understand the pain of those parents who have lost a child in this way. but yet, this young man was an afflicted one. An afflicted one left alone by all: abandoned to the mentality and fashion of the world, who believes and inculcates everyone that suicide is the only way to live their freedom. This is the freedom that today's world wants to convince us Catholics too that it is the one to live: a freedom that is not true freedom. That freedom that would be expressed in assisted suicide and euthanasia techniques, as happened for the case, rose to the fore of the news, by Dj Fabio. Dj Fabio was also a sufferer, one that we will biblically call afflicted[13]. The world, instead of giving him true freedom, he has abandoned him for good. The rule of law even offers him reason and jurisprudence to found the belief that one can only get out of suffering by committing suicide. As if suicide were the maximum expression of a "freedom"[14]. That freedom that eliminates suffering and affliction. Because a suffering and afflicted life has no value, then it is eliminated. It is taken and thrown away. And everything is disguised with the magic word: li-ber-Ta. Three syllables with which today we ride the wave and allow everything.

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"We live in an era in which we are entitled to live only if they are perfect. Any insufficiency, any weakness, every fragility seems banished "[15]

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There is only one answer to this terrible conviction of today's culture. The real answer that each of us can give is this: the joy of Jesus Christ. It responds to a logic of death, of throwaway culture, of necroculture simply by showing the joy and love that Jesus had for the afflicted. Because Jesus Christ himself often met with suffering. That is, Jesus met suffering and afflicted people: who in the body and who in the spirit. And he put himself at the service of them and their relatives and friends. For this he was able to relegate a special place in the Beatitudes to the suffering: "Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted"[16].

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If we take a look at the Gospel of the resurrection of Lazarus, let's see immediately how Jesus relates to the death of his dear friend Lazarus. Jesus himself cries. He is afflicted, and lives this moment together with other afflicted ones. Let's try to follow the Gospel text closely:

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«Jesus loved him very much (agapan = loved with mercy) to Marta, to his sister [Maria] and to Lazarus. Marta then, as he knew that Jesus was coming, went to meet him; Maria, on the other hand, was sitting in the house. Martha said to Jesus: "Man, if you had been here, my brother would not have died! But even now I know that whatever you will ask of God, God will give you ". Jesus told her: "Your brother will rise again". Marta answered him: "I know he will rise again on the last day". Jesus told her: «I am the resurrection and the life; who believes in me, even if it dies, will live; whoever lives and believes in me, will not die forever. You believe this?». She answered him: "Yup, o Lord, I believe you are the Christ, the Son of God who must come into the world " (= peepisteuka, the Greek verb expresses a strong leap of faith) Then Jesus saw her weeping and the Jews who had come with her also weep, he was deeply moved (embryonic masts = to get angry), he was upset and said: "Where have you placed it?”. They told him: "Man, come and see!”. Jesus burst into tears. Then the Jews said: “See how she loved him!”. After placing the stone in which Lazarus was placed, Jesus then raised his eyes and said: "Dad, thank you that you listened to me. I knew you always listen to me, but I said it for the people around me, so that they believe that you sent me ". E, said this, he shouted loudly: "Lazarus, come outside!”. The dead man came out, with his feet and hands wrapped in bandages, and the face covered with a shroud. Jesus said to them,: "Untie it and let it go" "[17].

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Let's try to read the text analytically. In verse 5 we see first of all that Jesus performs the action ofagapan that is, he loved Marta deeply, Maria and Lazzaro. agapao is the Greek verb from which it comes agape, that we precisely translate with Mercy. So he loved them with mercy. Also to the verses 20 – 27 Jesus is rebuked by Martha, later also by Maria, of not having been present at the time of Lazarus' death. He gets from them an act of faith in eternal life that happens through His Presence: the presence of Jesus, Son of God in the world. Subsequently (cf.. V.33) when he later learns of Lazarus's death, Jesus is moved: he has an angry movement of passion (so does the Greek verb embryonic masts), of aversion towards death which is one of the effects caused by original sin in turn generated by the devil. Jesus himself, so, expresses aversion and hostility towards death. Commenting on the verses 41 – 42, the exegete Brown writes:

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"Through the exercise of the power of Jesus, which is the power of the Father, they will know the Father and thus will receive life themselves. Jesus will get nothing for himself, he only wants his listeners to know the Father who sent him. […] The crucial thing is that Jesus gave physical life as a sign of his power to give eternal life on this earth and as a promise that on the last day he will raise the dead "[18].

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March, Maria and Lazzaro are afflicted. Jesus makes him discover, right in affliction, a true and real relationship with God. Suffering then becomes one of the possible "places" to truly encounter the Lord's love and receive consolation from it. As God did with Job and as now Jesus does with Lazarus. Effectively, the affliction, it can generate a sense of isolation: as we have seen so far, the suffering, if on the one hand it is an experience, on the other hand it is at the same time a solitary experience, permitted by God to the individual and only to the individual. In an indirect way it also affects relatives, the friends and neighbors of the afflicted one, but it serves first of all to the single person. These afflicted ones are not that far in time and space from our lives.

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We too can be merciful and show God's love to the afflicted. We can express and communicate the joy and vitality of Jesus through these suffering brothers of ours? Through the exercise of material and corporal works of mercy, it is possible to express the biblical sense of consolation. Here is the connection between consolation and a sense of brotherhood: knowing how to enter into someone's drama and support it. To be truly with - brothers through the Mercy / Agape of God for the other. To live by helping the afflicted is to support them. In being a support then there are three drifts that must absolutely be avoided:

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a) pitying the afflicted one. In other words, there is a risk of creating a victimization. Through this dynamic, the person gets stuck in his own pain and closes himself in a narcissism that prevents him from getting better [19].

b) The narcotic effect. That is, trying to get rid of pain by putting the conscience on it. The person is therefore pushed by society to live as if pain does not exist. This leads to superficiality, which is dangerous because it postpones the problem of pain and aggravates it[20]. In fact, escaping from a problem means aggravating it.

c) Invite the afflicted to see who is worse off than him: there is nothing worse than making existence like a Serie A ranking and saying who is better and who is worse off. It makes no sense to console someone by saying "since there are those who are worse off than you, you have to be fine " [21].

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Let's see', At that time, the work of mercy to console the afflicted in what it really consists of. The words of the presbyter Fabio Rosini who writes will help us:

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Physical pain can be harsh, but if there is a reason, it is supported, the heart is serene; if however, the pain is without explanation then becomes unbearable. Affliction needs a word to fill it, that address you, an indication that guides understanding " [22]

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The same word consolation (in Hebrew nacham), biblically it is rendered with the verbs to rest, stop, find tranquility or even give refuge[23]. This is what we just saw Jesus doing with Lazarus' afflicted relatives. Pacifying a person means giving him that word of fullness, of understanding, sense that pain seems to have stolen from him.

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"Whoever performs the act of consular is capable of putting himself next to the sufferer by showing him what he cannot see and allowing him to open his heart, the look, the spirit to another perspective, an integral depth that gives completeness "[24].

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In a certain sense, all Christians are called to console, remember that it is they who are called to give this completeness. So this is the call to be those who remember that God is above all hope in suffering. Remind the world and today's culture that hoping is a typically human act, but at the same time elevating: because it allows even the worst of the afflicted to rise above their pain. As Fabio Rosini always writes, consular, giving hope basically means, make an act of mercy that "makes eternity present, that reveals the face of God in pain "[25]. This will also allow us to resume first of all hope. And hoping is a typically Christian act. More, to hope is the typically Catholic act! Because the believer is the one who has placed all trust in Jesus. And just like Martha and Maria, he expresses his hope aloud in pain. Always keep this in mind, while you prepare sandwiches for the poor, while you prepare the spinal stretcher, while you rearrange the civil protection facilities. Hoping means first of all kindling the expectation of a God who is the immensely good absolute good.

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Each of us can be a bearer of hope, carriers of joy even to the afflicted of the poorest neighborhoods, to the afflicted one due to grief or depression, or precisely of a disability. Here then is that by relating these reflections to disability, we will say that even the person with disabilities, despite his afflictions and physical pains, he is called to a path of joy and sanctification. There is always a higher plane to which God the Father directs, how he directed the sufferings of Jesus of the Passion, to the joy of the Resurrection. We too will be transported to the joy of consolation. Because when we will console an afflicted one, this will make us truly discover the joy of our life. Our whole life will be knowing how to rediscover the presence of a Trinitarian God, who is with us even in pain. It is by loving who is afflicted, making him rediscover this joy of living, together with the poet Giacomo Leopardi we can say "I have never felt so much living as loving" [26].

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Rome, 4 November 2020

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NOTE

[1] The reader can consult for further information: G. A. Stella, Diverse - The long battle of the disabled to change history, Solferino, 2019, Milan.

[2] Pseudo-Apollodoro, Library, III, 6, 7.

[3] A. Camilleri, Conversations about Tiresia, Sellerio, Palermo, 2019.

[4] A. Camilleri, op.cit.

[5] Along this same line M stands. Schianchi, History of disability - From the punishment of the gods to the welfare crisis, Carocci, Rome, 2012, 40.

[6] Apollodoro, Greek myths, by P. Shoes, translate. at M.G. Ciani, Monadori, Milan, 1996, 55.

[7] Odyssey X, 492 and following, Translation by G. Aurelio Privitera

[8] T.S. Elliott, Wasteland mentioned in A. Cammileri, Conversations about Tiresia, 41 – 42. Check page again.

[9] Luca 1, 26.

[10](J). Ratzinger, Elements of fundamental theology, Morcelliana, Brescia, 69.

[11] S. Pinto, The secrets of Wisdom, Introduction to the wisdom and poetic books , St. Paul, Cinisello Balsamo, 2013, 21 – 23.

[12] Letter from M., a suicide in his thirties, taken from http://messaggeroveneto.gelocal.it/udine/cronaca/2017/02/07/news/non-posso-passare-il-tempo-a-cercare-di-sopravvivere-1.14839837 last access 10/01/20 hours 18.07.

[13] See. http://www.huffingtonpost.it/2017/02/28/fidanzata-dj-fabo-vorrei-notte-non-finisse_n_15055120.html Last Access 23 March 2017 hours 16.43).

[14] https://www.repubblica.it/cronaca/2019/09/25/news/consulta_cappato_dj_fabo_sentenza-236870232/ Last Access 10/01/10 hours 18.16.

[15]A. D’AVENIA, The art of being fragile, 2016, 147.

[16] Mt 5,4

[17] Gospel according to John, chapter 11.

[18] R. E. Brown, Giovanni, 2014, pp 567 – 568

[19] Fabio ROSINI, Only love creates, 2016, p. 121.

[20] In the same place.

[21] Fabio ROSINI, on,cit, p. 122.

[22] Fabio ROSINI, p. 120.

[23] Fabio ROSINI, p. 127.

[24] Fabio ROSINI p. 129.

[25] Fabio ROSINI, p. 129.

[26] (Zibaldone 1819 – 1820.)

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Staff Blog

Father Gabriele

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Visit the pages of our book shop WHO and support our editions by purchasing and distributing our books.

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News from the Dominican Province Roman: visit the official website of the Dominicans, WHO

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"Open Church" (V episode) - The state of emergency in the current health care ministry: the work of chaplains in hospitals during this pandemic coronavirus

- the Fathers of The Patmos Island close to the faithful in this quarantine -

"CHURCH OPEN» (V episode) - PASTORAL CARE IN THE CURRENT STATE EMERGENCY: THE WORKING CAPPELLANI HOSPITALS DURING THIS FROM PANDEMIC CORONAVIRUS

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We offer our readers this third precious videos of our esteemed brother John Zanchi, priest of the Diocese of Arezzo, so that it can also serve as an effective and wise antidote to all those who unfortunately, at this time of extraordinary crisis and emergency, They have nothing better to do than argue, often in harsh and aggressive tone, against decisions taken by our bishops for safety reasons to protect public health: suspend the sacred celebrations and in many cases close the churches. Recall that the Church, during crises and emergencies, It has never been saved by the controversy of those who stand for all time the most faithful among the faithful or to the purest of the pure, but the unit. Someone has written these days that "the bishops are committing suicide the Italian Church". Unfortunately he did not understand anything of the essence of the Catholic faith: the church “if suicidal” attacking the bishops, instead follow them and support them in a moment of so severe test.

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VIDEO SHOOTING AND ASSEMBLY BY THE ISSUER TELESANDOMENICO (AREZZO)

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TEXT OF THE VIDEO

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The texts of Father John Zanchi, director of the Pastoral Center Divine Worship of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Arezzo-Cortona-Sansepolcro, They are not meant as articles but as audio-narrative texts. We proceeded to transcribe audio text for our Readers.

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John Zanchi

Welcome to the fifth episode of Open Church!

In these difficult days Our churches in Italy, made of stones and bricks remain open, as a sign of the Church that remains present and active in the midst of our people (cf Tuscan Episcopal Conference, 14 March 2020); churches remain open, even if no public celebrations take place. Among the churches open there are also internal ones to the hospitals, officiated by hospital chaplains. These priests, together with their collaborators - often volunteers - they have always ensured an indispensable ministry in the places where disease is treated and death is fought; I am the maternal face of the Church which advises, teaches, warns, console, forgives, pray.

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I just pronounced verbs echo the works of spiritual mercy: counsel the doubtful, teach the ignorant, admonish sinners, console the afflicted, forgive offenses, pray to God for the living and the dead. Towards the sick, the commitment of the hospital staff is in some respects similar to the works of corporal mercy.

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In Hospital, next door and together with those who strives for the care of body and mind, There are Chaplains and their collaborators, who devote themselves to the care of the soul immortal. Their mission, more precious, It is particularly important in this time of epidemic, which it is even more urgent to fulfill Jesus' command, synthesized by the Church in the sixth work of corporal mercy: "I was sick and you visited me ... whenever you did this to the least of these my brethren, you did it to me " (Mt 25, 35. 40).

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The work of hospital chaplains reminds all that Hospitals are a Christian invention! The presence and work of hospital chaplains are challenging and even difficult in normal circumstances: not always the sufferers are available to seek the help of God; materialist and scientistic prejudice that corrupts our society devalues ​​the spiritual life and its need; secularism claims to deny the social value of faith and its public expression.

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The presence and work of Chaplains Hospitals are even more demanding and difficult in this dramatic moment, especially in crowded wards infected with the coronavirus: not only for the grueling pace to which are subject all those working in hospitals; not only for the management of clinical urgency and the defense protocols by limiting the possibilities of contagion linger at the bedside of the sick; the presence and the work of hospital chaplains are even more demanding and difficult because of the fact they can not approach the most seriously ill, even those in danger of death. Many of them die unfortunately only, without the comfort of the sacraments and the proximity of loved ones.

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For the conscience of a priest this is a fact very hard to bear! A Cremona Hospital doctor these days declared: "Slowly all these deaths kill us well. More days pass the more I wonder if they are still able to cure people, if my presence here still makes sense '.

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On the spiritual level these words hint at the inner struggle which also can be exposed the priests who carry out their ministry in hospitals in which you deal with the health emergency directly.

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What do chaplains in those hospitals, what are their spiritual weapons in the war against Covid-19? First, they celebrate the Holy Mass in the churches attached to the health resorts, interfering with i malati, the doctors, staff, the volunteers, i moribondi, the dead and the families of all these; sometimes for the departments sick you can watch via a television link. Then the Chaplains and their collaborators assist the less seriously ill with the solace of prayer, of the Sacraments, of spiritual direction. So Chaplains spiritually support the hospital staff, subjected to a superhuman effort.

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We listen to the testimony of a priest missionary in a large hospital in Milan: "My day job right now is primarily to support the doctors … we always do two hours of Eucharistic adoration in church. So people can come in dribs and drabs, and pray a little '. Even the sick who can not come to know that the chapel there is always someone praying for them and remembers them. Although we can not reach patients, they know that we have not abandoned " (Father Giovanni Musazzi, Hospital "Luigi Sacco", Milan).

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Together with the medical staff, Also hospital chaplains and their collaborators are our heroes, committed unsparing of himself on the front of the battle to defeat the great evil epidemic. Medical personnel rightly many people are reaching statements of solidarity and encouragement; Also to hospital chaplains and their collaborators must go public support and public recognition, because our society urgently needs to rediscover the spiritual value of the disease: if the man can not find a meaning to their suffering and their own death, then you can not even find out a way to live in their own health.

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The hospital chaplains and their employees are the face of the Church which remains open, indeed wide open, even in these calamitous times. Whether in open churches made of stone and brick, both in house churches that are our families, these days there rise up the fervent prayer of supplication and intercession for God's ministers working in hospitals and their collaborators, that the Lord will protect them from infection and help them to perform their essential spiritual ministry.

A resent tomorrow for a new installment of Open Church.

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Sansepolcro (Arezzo), 18 March 2020

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«You will know the truth and the truth will set you free» [GV 8,32],
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The terminally ill, the disabled and the priest-physician before a “sister” dreaded: that death to which cries, "O death, where is thy victory?»

- pastoral care of health -

SICK TERMINALS, WITH DISABILITIES AND THE PRIEST-DOCTOR BEFORE AN "SISTER" MUCH FEARED: DEATH THAT WHICH IS CRYING "O DEATH WHERE IS YOUR VICTORY?»

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It is something serious and deeply flawed, When the families of seriously ill or dying avoid calling the priest, claiming that ... "otherwise, seeing the priest scares!». But how can scare, Those whom the seriously ill or dying brings great medicine of God's grace? The truth is that being scared is not seriously ill or dying, but her family who download over him their fears. Perhaps because they have never seen people die in peace with God, nor have they seen the good that gives the seriously ill or dying this grace, this latest medicine that only the blind and wicked men may be denied to those to whom, against the other, say they want well.

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Author:
Gabriele Giordano M. Scardocci, o.p.

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PDF print format article
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representation of St. Francis of Assisi and Sister Death

In a country like Italy, where for four decades births are lower than deaths, we Fathers de The Island of Patmos we can not, as theologians and pastors in charge of souls, omit to give prominence to the phenomenon of aging and physical disability, then the delicate ambit of terminally ill. Let's start from the Gospel of St. John the Apostle where we read:

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"In truth, in verità vi dico: whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me, It has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but it is passed from death to life " [GV 5, 24].

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We all know the beautiful Canticle of the Creatures di San Francesco D’Assisi. The simple beauty of this declaration of love for creation still resonates after more than eight centuries. but yet, There is a passage that seems little shining, indeed some Catholics find it disturbing. Let us try to remember those verses, where at one point the Saint of Assisi writes:

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«praised’ me’ Lord for our sister bodily death, from whom no homo living can escape».

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St. Francis thanked God for the death of the body. Which in itself may seem paradoxical, absurd and almost meaningless. Of all creation, because without thanking the body death? To understand this "sonnet" we must remember that by faith we believe that death is a consequence of original sin. As written by the medieval theologian St. Julian of Toledo, taking in turn San Gregorio Magno:

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"Man established in Paradise received a precept, so was in its nature the power to not die, and the power of death: if it was found obedient to the fulfillment of the vital precept, It would become immortal; if it was found disobedient for his iniquity he would begin to be deadly […]» [Prognostic Forever, The Book, III].

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So this is one of the main themes of our faith. And now, immersed in Lent, We travel together for forty days until the time of death of the body of Jesus as a passage to the resurrection and eternal life. Jesus faced, in its human nature, the event of death and defeated, being the first of the resurrected: in tal modo, It allows us, one day, resurrected him.

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When we get closer to the priests seriously ill, who morenti, Our task is not to give them "the last illusion ', how they think at times some doctors, but give them the medicine that can save their souls forever, for eternity. The priesthood, under certain aspects, It can be considered as the last extreme degree of medicine: the one and only medicine that can save souls. In these cases the priest-doctor, far from illusory manner in comfort, It will give the seriously ill and dying person the certainty of faith that death is a moment of transition. Because of this, along with St. Francis, we can say that this "formidable Lady ', come la chiamavano i sapienti medievali, is our sister.

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Death is a passing event that sooner or later we all have to go, because it is a reality which no human being can escape. At the same time, But, precisely because the death was not an event willed by God or contemplated perfect natural order created by Him, just the thought of it gives us a certain sadness, because death is something “unnatural”, when read in the light of creation. And this is precisely because death is not the work of God, but a consequence of human sin, who is the true creator of death. At the same time, the death, He instills in us a certain fear. Because then we do not know what will be our destination, or because we fear our destination. In the seriously ill and dying, this understandable fear fades, or disappear completely, when with certainty of faith receives from the priest-doctor the great medicine of God's grace.

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Many doctors and specialists engaged in therapies of pain and in the treatment of terminally ill patients, saw patients until prostrate before regaining serenity and fearful, after being treated by the priest-doctor, many doctors and paramedics, between them even nonbelievers, often they are the first to tell the family that perhaps their loved one would need the comfort of a priest.

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With such sensitivity and contemplative spirit, after trying to grasp the great mystery of death, then simply try to pray, to get in tune with this big sister, at the same time feared and almost deliberately forgotten, thinking that with it will be our Passover, our passage to eternal life. Down the existence tunnel there is the absolute vacuum, but the springboard of the "final jump" in the eternal infinite God. After the jump, It is the definitive time. We can then, con Gesù, make our own the verses of the writer and English poet John Donne

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"Death will be no more death. And you, death morrai ».

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It is something serious and deeply flawed, When the families of seriously ill or dying avoid calling the priest, claiming that ... "otherwise, seeing the priest scares!». But how can scare, Those whom the seriously ill or dying brings great medicine of God's grace? The truth is that being scared is not seriously ill or dying, but her family who download over him their fears. Perhaps because they have never seen people die in peace with God, nor have they seen the good that gives the seriously ill or dying this grace, this latest medicine that only the blind and wicked men may be denied to those to whom, against the other, say they want well. A tal punto bene da pensare che, the ultimate comfort in the grace of God that heals the wounds of the soul, may even scare.

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Rome, 4 March 2020

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Staff Blog

Father Gabriele

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Visit the pages of our book shop WHO and support our editions by purchasing and distributing our books

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News from the Dominican Province Roman: visit the official website of the Dominicans, WHO

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«You will know the truth and the truth will set you free» [GV 8,32],
but bring, spread and defend the truth not only of
risks but also the costs. Help us supporting this Island
with your offers through the secure Paypal system:









or you can use the bank account:

payable to Editions The island of Patmos

IBAN IT 74R0503403259000000301118
in this case, send us an email warning, because the bank
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About the Coronavirus: and every plague pandemic in human history has always marked a renaissance: "The above, famine and war libera nos, Dominated"

– health ministry –

ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS: PESTILENCE EACH AND PANDEMIC HAS ALWAYS MARKED THE HISTORY OF MANKIND A RENAISSANCE: «fish, FAME ET BEAUTIFUL FREE NOS, DOMINATED»

 

As we approach di una malattia particolarmente estesa, this would seem to be the Coronavirus, Today we do not discuss more about spreaders, monatti, lazzaretti e crociferi: the Manzoni era ended long ago. The discussion climbs, instead, of land much more rugged and treacherous, that involve the responsibility of the government and ruling classes immigrazioniste and health policies in place to limit the contamination. And in this scene there are plenty of buck, the deniers radicals, the conspiracy theorists, or certain Catholics who advocate the impending Apocalypse, to follow along with the devotees of conspiracy more refined and so to follow.

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Author
Ivano Liguori, Ofm. Capp.

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