Cuaresma con Damián

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Acabamos de recibir con inmenso gozo la noticia de la canonización de nuestro querido Beato Damián, el próximo 11 de Octubre, en la Plaza de San Pedro del Vaticano, en una solemne ceremonia que presidirá el Papa Benedicto XVI. El P. Damián se convierte así en modelo para la Iglesia universal. Esta buena noticia nos llega días previos al inicio del tiempo cuaresmal. Parece como si la vida de Damián se nos propusiera como ejemplo que nos oriente en este camino hacia la Pascua.

En una de sus cartas, el P. Damián nos da la clave de la preparación cuaresmal:

Recordemos que Jesucristo, el divino misionero, precedió su predicación con la penitencia y la oración. Así, queridos amigos, comenzad vuestro apostolado muriendo a vosotros mismos y orando por los pecadores, especialmente por los leprosos.

 

Esta práctica de la penitencia y de la oración, ayudan a Damián a mostrar a su comunidad de enfermos que, en el centro de su vida, está el Corazón de Dios. Para que Dios reine en él, cuida la oración y la penitencia, el desprendimiento de sí, la atención a los enfermos, deja su yo para pronunciar el nosotros, los leprosos. Damián nunca actúa en singular, entona con convicción el nosotros; se sabe parte de una Comunidad, de la Congregación, de la Iglesia.

 

Hay, por un lado, miradas catastrofistas, alarmistas, pesimistas sobre la realidad; en el extremo, podemos hallar pasividad, análisis ingenuos, falta de compromiso… La vida de Damián está caracterizada por su realismo esperanzado, que le brota de la fe. Su esperanza le lleva al consuelo. Sabe que la realidad es “repulsiva”, pero al mismo tiempo su mirada, con los ojos puestos en Jesús, se confunde con la de Dios:

“Resulta repulsivo verlos, sin duda, pero tienen un alma rescatada al precio de la sangre del Salvador. También El, en su misericordia, consoló a los leprosos. Si yo no puedo curarlos, sí que dispongo de los medios para consolarlos. Confío en que muchos, purificados de la lepra del alma por los sacramentos, sean dignos, un día, del cielo”.

 

¡Cuántas situaciones de enfermedad, dificultades, desaliento nos encontramos a nuestro alrededor! Situémonos por un momento en el paisaje humano que le tocó vivir a Damián en Molokai. Él trató de vivir su Calvario sin hacer ruido, confiado en Aquél que sostuvo siempre su existencia. Así lo expresa en la última carta antes de su muerte, dirigida a su amigo Edward Clifford:

 

Hago lo que puedo, sin quejarme demasiado y pensando en la santificación de mi alma, por soportar las miserias de la enfermedad, que la Divina Providencia está empleando para desasir mi corazón de todo afecto terreno y, al mismo tiempo, para incentivar el deseo de toda alma cristiana por estar unida lo más pronto posible con Él que es su vida única. Buen viaje, mi querido amigo, hasta que nos veamos en el cielo.

 

     Afirmaba José Dutton, laico compañero de Damián, que “Un Molokai puede existir en cualquier parte”. Nosotros estamos llamados a que ese Molokai que puede estar cerca de nosotros pase del Calvario a la Gloria, de la Cuaresma a la Pascua. Eso sí que será hacer memoria, amar a Damián y amar a Cristo.

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