Mercy towards the weak, the sick, the defeated and the suffering, in the eyes of a pagan could seem like weakness. Instead, in the eyes of Mary, love and therefore compassion, heroic charity, indulgence, and renunciation out of love for our brother, were gestures of magnanimous strength, and values, meaning to say generosity which surpasses every earthly measure. And vile, weak and defeated is whoever does not have compassion, does not help his brother in need, and does not cry with him, sharing in his trials. And vile is the person who, in the face of the injured man on the road, runs away, and escapes in the face of human and divine duties. If someone slaps you, and you respond in the same way, it means you were unable to dominate yourself, and you did not have the strength to break the spiral of inhumanity. Instead, if you check yourself and do not take revenge, you are implementing an ideal of superior strength, which socially brings a benefit whereas revenge spurs a sequence of evil doings.
Igino Giordani, The only love, New City, Roma, 1974, p. 68
God exists because there is love. Love exists because there is God. God in fact is love. He lives because he gives life. You breathe: you have a physical existence. You love: you have a spiritual existence. If you don’t love, it would be as if you don’t breathe: you are dead in your soul. But – they say – we can’t see God. That’s true. We cannot see him with the eyes of the body because he is a pure spirit. However, once he became man in Christ, he appeared to a whole population. But we contemplate him with the eyes of the spirit, because he is love and love is a spirit, and we experience him as such. The experience is prolonged by our relationship with people purified. When we are with children, their eyes issue a light which resembles that of the other constellations. Likewise when we approach apostles, servers of humanity, priests who live only of their ideal, and virgins totally dedicated to God, and workers of every type driven by the sense of integrity, another atmosphere issues, enveloping the material world. In it we easily meet creatures linked to the other type of love, which prolongs the innocence of Mary and the sacrifice of Christ.
Igino Giordani, The only love, New City, Rome, 1974, p. 9
The dark night
God’s revelation to the soul resembles the education with which parents raise their sons, using caresses and scolding, amid smiles and tears. This is what the Eternal Father does. Intimacy with him grows, if the purification grows in us. We feel him according to how much we love him. In this experience, some mystics at the height of the consolations, passed through phases of desolation: the dark night. It happens often during the period of existence in which we expect more comprehension. And instead, it is precisely then that man is confused and fears that he is misunderstood. It is the purification, due to which the relationship becomes a crystalline divine gift. And it results in a serene certainty of one who coexists with Love incarnate, from which a happiness ensues and which not even the most bitter earthly betrayal can upset.
«When we start to dialogue again with people of the past, the first question we ask is: why do we do this? Every life conceals a mystery and something unresolved that would never allow us to say the word, “end,” if negligence does not intervene. It is the daily experience with those we care for most, so one can imagine how natural the oblivion is of the unknown who now belongs to history. (This is what Giovanni Santambrogio wrote about Igino Giordani in the newspaper, “Corriere della Sera.”) These are thoughts that are very touching for those who have known Igino Giordani, and had spoken to him; those who met him daily in his writings – always perceived his lively presence up to the point of observing with admiration, that with each passing day Igino Giordani was really not subject to that merciless law of “oblivion” like the other companions of his: Fr. Luigi Sturzo, Alcide De Gasperi, Giorgio La Pira, and Giuseppe Donati. And history punctually offers us various occasions in which to discover the traces he left in the life of the Church, of Italy, of Politics.... Like that on 16 March 1949.
Speech of Igino Giordani in the Parliamentary session of 16 March 1949
In April 1949, 12 European countries stipulated the Atlantic Pact, an agreement for mutual defense in case one of the signing countries is attacked from outside. What urged this Atlantic Pact were the fears of a possible military action of the Soviet Union in Europe. The discussions, therefore, naturally assumed a strong ideological characteristic. Also in Italy the Parliament was a stage of vehement political oppositions. Let us recall the speech of Igino Giordani with regard to the Atlantic Pact and the war, which even got to the point of conceiving a completely new idea like the “International Europe” – worthy to be revived and studied – and which could have undertaken the role of being a source of unity. «I would start from a principle: every war is failure of Christians … you very well wrote on the walls of the offices of the Italian Prime Minister: “no to war.” And we agree with this. And you also wrote: “land, not war.” We perfectly agree to this too. Too much land has already been assigned as war cemeteries: it would be good to save it and give it to our workers as farmland.
Getting to know the places in the Gospel is a way of getting closer to the evangelizer, and acquiring a deeper understanding of the allusions of his discourses and the geographic and historical ambience in which his drama came about. And Bishop Piero Rossano acknowledged, in commenting on the book of Wolfango E. Pax, “Where He passed”: «the reader is put in the condition of becoming a contemporary of Jesus and tracing his earthly life step by step». One reviews and better understands Jerusalem, the city of David, perpetual centre of peace and war, with its alleys and streets pulsing with masses, as when Jesus mixed with the people to free it. Diggings, ruins, new buildings, Christian temples, and ancient walls help to revive the Messiah’s mission in modern times. All around are signs of the destructions of war and struggling reconstructions, amid which people who have come from afar (if we thought of the Crusades and their varieties and succession) recall the existence of the Saviour in the external aspects of cities and countrysides, so much so that he reappears not only in the event that culminated in Calvary, but also in the history of the centuries which confirmed “the sign of contradiction.”
Since he is love, God is a trinity, that is, he has generated a person worthy and able to love in the same way, and who is infinite: he generated a Son, binding himself to him with a third person, who is the Holy Spirit. If God was exclusively Strength, Honour, or Awe, he would have remained a sole person and would not have generated a Son, or accomplished a creation. He would be closed in himself and would not have opened up. But Christian love is Trinitarian. It is a circle which postulates three points: Father, Son and Holy Spirit; I – my brother – God, and Father – Mother – Son.
Aldous Huxley wrote - even civil progress is a progress in love, and that is, a progress towards God, a climb from the earth to heaven. It is an endeavour to give a divine soul to society, making the members participate in the divine nature. We progress inasmuch as we love, that is, life grows, freeing us from deadly bonds. All of the «new» commandments are enclosed here, very simple, yet very difficult. Now this love operates like a fire that cleanses the soul of all the debris and liberates the divine in it, in order to rise like an antenna to capture in the universe, God. Sanctity sought in this manner is proportional to our capacity to receive the Spirit of the Lord and retransmit it to mankind.
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