From MISNA by Fr. Claudio Codenotti, s.x.March 15, 2011
Dearest Friends, I decide only now to put together some lines and thoughts after
and “during” the terrible moments experienced by the people of Japan, whose
experiences I am asked to share.
As written in the title, there are sentiments that come and go, intertwining and contrasting, depending on the news and direct events I witness, certainly not without emotion.
Though in the dramatic footage it is difficult to see tears and if so they are composed, in moments of solitude and reflection I cannot stop mine. Not certainly a sign of weakness or even one-way, in other words grief, but also of hope and gratitude – proud to be in this country especially in these moments. There are many reasons, in each occasion, that reinforce the love, solidarity and sharing.
Sentiments of grief: the news is always more critical… the 2-thousand confirmed victims and 15-thousand missing. The situation of the 450-thousand displaced, out in the cold, sick, weak and helpless. The uncertainty and certainly the concern of what the next months will bring. Personally, there is also the fact of being far and not being able to share in the suffering anymore.
Sentiments of hope: small scenes of solidarity, joy, heroism that go beyond family or personal ties, but touch all indistinctly. Though it would be difficult to sit and write about all of them, they will forever stay in my memory and in the future I will tell you of them in conversation.
Sentiments of pride: I feel proud to be among these wonderful people, as also part of that birth nation that continues to pour out solidarity and affection. From both fronts I always receive lessons of life and faith that go beyond limits of race, culture and religion.
For this reason, in the midst of so much suffering I thank the Lord for having given me the grace to be a missionary in this land, and especially to feel close to my Xaverian brothers, who in different ways share the same sentiments in dramatic situations, in Africa, Asia and the Americas. I ask and pray to the Lord that in making us feel so close and united it is always more moments of joy and not grief that prevail. I also urge all friends to reinforce the sensitivity, without waiting for such occasions, such as this terrible experience of the Japanese population.
We are all children of the same Father, and let a few extra tears, tied to some gesture or style of daily life, be our distinctive trait and testimony of a more fraternal world.