The apostles together with all Jesus’ disciples are sent out as “witnesses”. Each Christian when they discover through Jesus what it means to be a child of God, discovers that they too are sent. Our vocation and our identity as children of God become a reality in the mission, in reaching out towards others as brothers and sisters.
I work freelance so have no fixed salary. One day, just as I was about to go to my work studio without any money, I found a wallet on the ground. I picked it up and went to work. It contained a lot of money that I could really have used, especially because I had a child who is not well. For a moment I was tempted to keep it but then decided to look for its owner. To my surprise, I discovered it belonged to a neighbour of mine. As I stood in front of his door I was once again tempted to keep the wallet but then I rang the bell. He thanked me and I went to sleep at peace. The following day, completely unexpectedly, a considerable amount of money arrived at the studio!
(N. – Egypt)
At first, I thought it was all just symptoms of ageing but when we received the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s I started to become really anxious. The wonderful man I had married, the invidious father of our children, had become someone to be pitied. As the disease progressed, something was destroyed in me too: it was as if everything I did for my husband disappeared in the wind. Even the children, with their families and their problems, seemed distant to me. A priest advised me not to make comparisons with the past but to start life today. Something began to stir within me and my husband seemed to become more serene which the children felt when they came to visit us. After his death, the youngest hugged me and said: “You have always been our models, but especially in the last period”.
(S.Q. – Portugal)
Two hundred and thirty refugees arrived in our city, some with only the clothes they were wearing. Saddened by this situation, we decided to collaborate with Caritas, investing time and energy. Little by little we made friends with them and some of the mothers started to visit our homes. One day Pasa, a Muslim, saw how worried we were about our daughter who was seriously ill and promised to pray every day to Allah for her. It all reconfirmed to us how fraternity goes beyond cultural differences and religious faith.
(U.R.J. – Germany)
In our country, sole-traders, pedal-operated taxi drivers, teachers and government employees, because of their low salaries, are obliged to borrow money from moneylenders at very high interest rates. One day, a group of us decided to set up a credit union to fight this economic crisis. Our house became the official headquarters. We tried to live the Gospel as our only rule, listening carefully to every member to help solve their problems. We involved very wealthy people from the surrounding area, and thanks to their help the drivers of pedal-operated taxis have been able to buy their vehicles, many young people have been able to continue their studies and sick people have been able to pay for treatment. Some families have received help to build a house, others have managed to save money to go to work abroad. The wealthiest families became aware of everyone else’s needs and the poor overcame their sense of inferiority. The Gospel really teaches us how to live as a community.
(M.T. – Philippines)
On the bus
A group of lads were sitting on the back seats of the bus playing their rap music very loudly and bellowing at the top of their voices. The other passengers would turn and look at them disapprovingly but it only made them shout even louder. At a certain point a middle-aged woman, smiling broadly, went up to the lads and invited them to sing more clearly so that the other passengers could hear the words of the songs better. After an embarrassing silence, a choir began. The boys began to smile, the words were understood and people began to applaud. The atmosphere in the bus had completely changed.
(W.K. – England)
edited by Chiara Favotti