We start from one

Publish date 13-05-2021

by Max Laudadio

Do you believe in miracles? We Christians are called to do so because they are part of the complex mechanism that leads to faith. In the Gospels they are presented as normal and have allowed conversions that perhaps would never have occurred. But do miracles keep happening? Many testimonies tell us yes but they seem to tell the life of a select few. But I don't think so!

I do not want to appear neither blasphemous nor pedantic because, as you know, I have learned that faith requires trust and total respect for its doctrine and does not allow personal interpretations that would risk creating parallel currents or false illusions, but I am convinced that miracles do not are so exclusive. I believe that miracles happen every day, on unpredictable occasions of everyday life and when we least expect it. I call them the miracles of the soul.

They are the ones who do not raise the dead or cure the terminally ill, but still manage to upset someone's existence. I am sure of it because I have seen them happen with my own eyes, in ordinary people, and even non-believers. A miracle of the soul is what happened to my adopted daughter Ina, who after losing hope in the love of the family, and responding with wrong actions that have conditioned her youth, listened to her heart to choose the ingredients that they would dial in his future. But a miracle also happened in Stanley, a Nigerian boy who had arrived in Italy for a crime, after abandoning his wife and his four children, but who instead chose the path of honesty, sacrifice, commitment, making him resurface in him the desire to reunite with his affections and the will to take responsibility for their maintenance. I could tell thousands of these miracles of the soul but I would like to emphasize one in particular, the one that took place inside the Opera prison.

A few years ago, my wife and I presented a project that involved the creation of a choir made up of 21 life prisoners, 18 musicians and 40 people from the small mountain village where I live. The goal was to bring this unlikely choir to sing in the cathedral of Milan during the feast of the Immaculate Conception celebrated by Archbishop Mario Delpini. The proposal seemed complex because my villagers had never entered a prison and were very suspicious and judgmental, but also because the inmates had never left the prison. To make the situation even more difficult there was also a considerable safety problem.

For two months we worked with that love that, on occasions like these, manages to overcome every obstacle and the reactions of all the protagonists were not left to wait. I have seen looks of hope replace those of mistrust, those of fear with those of courage, and those of judgment with those of trust. I heard words that moved me and exchanged hugs that broke down distances. I perceived equality, fraternity, and the desire to share as if they were constant chills that marked my skin. We cried, laughed, sang, rejoiced, prayed, joked, and lived as never before, without any expectations but enjoying every second, and every breath that marked the hours. On the day of the Holy Mass we arrived at the Milan Cathedral without knowing what else could have happened and what emotions we could have felt again, but the inmates' eyes responded immediately. They expressed awe, wonder, ecstasy at that unexpected gift. And even my fellow citizens, now changed in their judgments, responded by showing belonging to the group and even seeking physical contact, the proximity of the bodies, as if in search of a human amalgam where only one heart can beat in unison. The musicians have succumbed to emotion, several times and without the shame to show it.

At the end of the song, the archbishop unexpectedly changed the ceremonial of the important anniversary and approached us with humility, to greet and thank everyone, one by one, without exception. The thousands of eyes that had attended the mass told all that love was doing at that moment. The miracle of the soul was performed again, in all present, without exception.

Today I love to think that these miracles, which obviously each of us can help to make it happen, are the means that God has chosen to confirm that we men are important pawns in the complex mechanism that leads to true love, the one that burns everything but does not. it leaves behind despair but great inner peace.
We just have to pray that each of us can become, as soon as possible, a fuse capable of lighting continuous fires of love.

Max Laudadio
NP February 2021

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