18 August

Aug 18, 2018 | Claret mit dir

“They have owed me since September and you since April of this year. I am sorry to put the complaint to Her Majesty, because I am sure it will upset her and, undoubtedly, would cause some employees to lose their jobs on seeing the injustice done to me […]. I am providing a service more important and more exposed, because as you already know, on the 22nd of last month, how they did not cut my throat was a miracle, and this for being at the side of Her Majesty”
Letter to Manuel José Miura, July 23 1866, in EC II, p. 1030


Claret shows in this passage a great realism and exquisite social sensitivity, along with the awareness of his mission and the desire to be faithful to it. Indeed, on the one hand, in touch with reality, he is aware of certain injustices: to Mr Miura – his great collaborator in Santiago de Cuba – and to himself as they have often not been paid what was theirs. But, with his insight, he sees that, if he denounces the fact, the ineptitude of some officials will be evident and may be dismissed from their jobs (today we understand this with more clarity). His known compassion leads him, besides, to avoid giving displeasure to Queen Isabel II, since Claret knows how serious she takes it when it affects him or the Church.
Seeing it all, he almost prefers to suffer the injustice: once again he shows us his openness of heart. And he speaks of his fidelity to something greater: to his mission as confessor to the Queen, although he is running the risk of death. A real hierarchy of values that we could cite for this order, also perfectly valid today, that does not override any of the values in question: fidelity to the apostolic mission received, social justice and the delicacy of not hurting people.
In the soul of Claret, the perspective of martyrdom was particularly present in his years in Madrid; but this was nothing new, as it had already been so in Cuba, and before that in his native Catalonia: “Many times the word went out that I had been murdered, and good souls were already having Masses said for me” (Aut 464): a life always accompanied by the cross: the cross of work, the cross of his duty as a missionary, the intimate cross of his configuration with the crucified Jesus for keeping a watch on the sins of the world.
Do I feel the problems of the society in which I find myself? Do I live them in fidelity to the mission that God has entrusted to me, whatever it might be?



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