Lifelong CatechesisForming Catholic identity across generations
The sound of Alleluias fills the 50 days of Easter Sunday to Pentecost as we give thanks for the gift of our salvation. The Easter Triduum recalls the passion and resurrection of Christ in the sacred journey from Holy Thursday to Easter Vigil. "Dying he destroyed our death. Rising he restored our life."
Joseph De Veuster was born in Belgium in January 1840. As a boy, Joseph worked on his father’s farm where he learned not only farming skills but carpentry and, from his devout mother, a love for God. All of this knowledge would be put to good use in his later life. He entered a religious community and became a priest. Eventually he was sent to Hawaii as a missionary, where he began his work among the lepers who were exiled to Molokai. Recognizing that Catholics in the colony had no priest except for an occasional visitor, the bishop brought the problem to his priests. It was suggested that several priests rotate to the island, each staying a few weeks or months at a time. Fr. Damien volunteered to be the first.
Leprosy (Hanson’s Disease) is curable and no longer the scourge that it was in the nineteenth century. Today, there are other sufferings that afflict the human race: hostilities, hunger, and, in our country, homelessness, to name but a few. Each of us is called upon to do whatever we can do to alleviate the pain of others.