domenica 24 maggio 2015

Dialogue with a friend

Imagine a scene similar to the one you can find in the Book of Job, where the so called friends are challenging the patience of Job.
Today I have been visited by a friend who was full of questions and apparently wanted me to have some reality check about Chaaria.
He was so concerned about the fact that Chaaria is becoming too big and therefore difficult to manage; he kept repeating me that I must think of the future and of a plan for the continuity of the hospital after me. He was also very concerned about our finances, and how we can cope with all the growing financial burdens, while keeping the prices so low. 
Actually I was not surprised about such concerns, which have been there from the beginning. Prophets of doom have never lacked in our short history in Chaaria.
Those are questions I hear very often; sometimes they are asked by people seriously concerned and really trying to help me avoid a failure. Some other times I may feel in them just a bit of jealousy.
But the answer to the above questions can be found very easily in the life of our founder. Even to him a minister of the king told that there were concerns in the government about the size and the costs of the new institution founded by Cottolengo. 

But the answer given to the Earl of Castagnetto followed a logic which is not the human one: “dear sir, the reason why Divine Providence is late in providing is because I do not have enough faith and I have two free beds. I am going to fill them immediately with new patients and Divine Providence will come to our help”.
The Earl was completely confused and impressed by the unbounded faith of Cottolengo and wrote to the King: “his majesty, I have understood from that priest that, in order to cover a debt, you must increase the expenses.
I believe that this is the same idea which must lead us: if we are generous and spend our lives completely in the service of the poor, Divine Providence will give us the money. The money will delay and lack only if we are lazy and not committed.
I have told my friend today that I am not concerned about the future because I believe that the future is in the hands of God. He will decide who will continue the service in Cottolengo Mission Hospital when I am not able any more. 
And on top of that, I reckon to be very wrong if we put limitations to the good we can do today for fear of not being able to do it any more in the future. A life saved today has an immense value, and I must not stop helping people in need today, simply because I am not sure of the continuity in the future. 
Thinking again of the life of Cottolengo it is enough to consider that when epidemics of cholera or typhus were killing brothers, sisters and priests, our founder wanted them to continue serving the poor; he has never prevented them from the service of the poor out of fear of being exposed to the disease. Cottolengo himself died while assisting people affected by typhus. I believe that we must spend ourselves totally, up to when God gives us strength, and then we must leave the future to Him, who is a Good Father.
I am sure even the finances will be okay, if we are totally generous to God and to the poor.
Cottolengo was very clear on that. For us the money is simply the means, the instrument we use to help the others. When we keep the money apart, when we accumulate it in a bank to cool down our fears for the future, it becomes a disgrace. So the money is to be used generously and completely for the poor if we wish Divine Providence to send it again. 

Bro Beppe

Nessun commento:

Chaaria è un sogno da realizzare giorno per giorno.

Un luogo in cui vorrei che tutti i poveri e gli ammalati venissero accolti e curati.

Vorrei poter fare di più per questa gente, che non ha nulla e soffre per malattie facilmente curabili, se solo ci fossero i mezzi.

Vorrei smetterla di dire “vai altrove, perché non possiamo curarti”.

Anche perché andare altrove, qui, vuol dire aggiungere altra fatica, altro sudore, altro dolore, per uomini, donne e bambini che hanno già camminato per giorni interi.

E poi, andare dove?

Gli ospedali pubblici hanno poche medicine, quelli privati sono troppo costosi.

Ecco perché penso, ostinatamente, che il nostro ospedale sia un segno di speranza per questa gente. Non ci sarà tutto, ma facciamo il possibile. Anzi, l’impossibile.

Quello che mi muove, che ci muove, è la carità verso l’altro, verso tutti. Nessuno escluso.

Gesù ci ha detto di essere presenti nel più piccolo e nel più diseredato.

Questo è quello che facciamo, ogni giorno.

Fratel Beppe Gaido

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