Visit from Father Rodrigo Miranda (IVE), missionary in Aleppo (Syria) to Zurita (Cantabria - Spain) on May 9, 2016.
On May 9th we had the privilege of getting to know more about the profound experience of faith that our persecuted brothers live daily in Syria with the visit of Fr. Rodrigo Miranda, a chilean priest who belongs to the Institute of the Incarnate Word (IVE) and is a missionary in Aleppo (Syria).
Father Rodrigo Miranda came to Zurita, accompanied by delegates from the Foundation of the Holy See “Aid to the Church in Need” (ACN) located in Cantabria and a volunteer of the same from Madrid, and it was thanks to them that it was possible to welcome this great gift, the visit of this missionary.
Our Mother, who takes care of every one of her children with much detail, wanted to surprise Fr. Rodrigo with the unexpected happy birthday song, sang by all of us in Zurita, and with a thoughtful small gift, since the day before it had been his 40th birthday. We celebrated his birthday in a very simple and familial way all together and during the meal and the dessert, Fr. Rodrigo, shared with the community, his experience as a priest in various places of conflict, such as Bethlehem, Gaza, Egypt, Jordan and Syria.
With much simplicity, he allowed us to ask him questions and made us all participants of the intensity of the love with which the faith is lived in the midst of a horrifying persecution. He was asked if he felt afraid, he replied: 'I really don’t have time to think if I'm afraid ... There is so much to do that if I've had, I have not noticed!'. Father Rodrigo told us about the Syrian Catholic youth and told us: 'There are many vocations, because they really live their faith.'
He gave us the Lord's blessing in Arabic and we sang the Lord's Prayer in Arabic.
Later H.M. Television had the privilege of interviewing him and so he left us all with a few words of strength and authentic giving of ourselves in Jesus Christ. 'What do Christians do in the face of martyrdom, in the face of horror, in the face of suffering, in the face of terror? They gaze intensely at Jesus Christ.'
Let us thank God for bringing us such great and devoted souls like the ones the Lord is allowing us to meet from all these places of conflict and persecution, and let’s unite ourselves through the communion of saints to those who are being authentic witnesses of Christ in the world.
Thank you Blessed Mother for teaching us how we all should give of ourselves every day.