«There is only one reason why the Angels envy men: because they can’t offer God any suffering in order to show Him their love» (St. Pio of Pietralcina) «Life and death are fighting a prodigious duel…» and in this dramatic moment of the history of humanity it seems that death is prevailing. The civilization of death is overflowing its banks, from before the birth of man to before his end: abortion and euthanasia are being proclaimed as the greatest progress of civilization. In reality, it is the greatest progress of the selfishness of man who, swallowed up by widespread materialism, has lost the light of the spirit and lives only with regard to an inferior hedonism. The result is that suffering is considered as the greatest evil to be exorcized in any way, including murder
(To St Pio of Pietrelcina)
« Father, how shall we call the organization for the sick?» He closed his eyes, remained absorbed in his thoughts for a few seconds and then pronounced clearly: «Assistance to suffering humanity».
«Father, will the organization care for only a few types of illnesses, for example paraplegics, or must it embrace all kinds of suffering?»
As before, he closed his eyes and remained in silence for a while. Then he raised his hands to heaven and almost shouted, with an increasing tone of voice: «Everyone, my son, everyone, everyone….»
«Father, I would like to do something for the sick…» «Why do you want to do this?» «So that so much suffering won’t go to waste», I answered without ever having thought it before. «Do you know what to expect?» He asked me staring at me, as if he was almost examining my true intentions…
After coming out of his cell, I met an acquaintance in the square who, without me having mentioned to him at all about the encounter I had a few minutes beforehand, said to me: «You know, last year, at the end of my Confession, Padre Pio said to me: Do something for the sick, don’t let so much suffering go to waste! »
We devote these pages to many children who are tried by suffering, children who are most dear to the Heart of the Father, so that they may find in the example of other little brothers and sisters the strength to offer their crucified innocence:
Theo Mosh.«I met Theo for the first time along the road to the Capuchins, at San Giovanni Rotondo. It was a strange encounter, filled only with smiles…»
Nennolina Meo. «Pain is like cloth: the stronger it is, the more value it has» On the lips of a 5-year-old this kind of expression is sufficient to express what a long way she has come…
Laurita Degan. «During the night between the 9th and 10th of September we heard you talking in a whisper. You were saying: «Yes, O.K, I understand, O.K». To mother who asked who you were talking to, you answered that Baby Jesus and Mother Mary were sitting next to you and they were caressing your forehead, because you were in so much pain…»
Memena Cetrullo. «Mommy, I thought dying was so awful, instead it’s so beautiful», were her last words…
Stephen Tacconelli. «Stephen, offer your suffering to Jesus!» «Mommy, how can I offer Jesus even my suffering when He already suffered so much for us? »
Padre Pio’s smile
“The Lord loves those who give with joy”. How can we combine joy with the utmost suffering in which at times we are immersed? St. Pio of Pietralcina – the man who more than any other has embodied suffering in continuous union with Jesus, the Man of sorrows – has always been the expression of a fullness of joy that manifested itself in constant witticism filled with a profound sense of humour.