ASIA/INDONESIA - A 'big sea' of social charitable activities: the Camillians in Flores after the Covid-19 pandemic

Monday, 20 June 2022


Maumere (Agenzia Fides) - "The long period of the Covid-19 pandemic was experienced in more or less intense forms even in the 17 thousand Indonesian islands. The tourist areas were certainly the most affected with the almost total closure of ports and airports, thus devastating the activities of hotels, hotels and tourist attractions. All this has contributed to creating difficult situations for many families forced to face serious problems of hardship and poverty".
Father Luigi Galvani, a Camillian missionary on the island of Flores briefly summarizes the long period of global pandemic with the consequent increase in needs that the missionaries have tried to cope with.
"Such a harsh and unexpected social situation, on the other hand, has become like a 'big sea' - writes to Fides Fr. Galvani - in which the social charity initiatives of the Camillians have been protagonists in favor of hundreds and hundreds of needy families, of support for dozens of mentally ill patients and of scholastic help for particularly deserving students".
The St. Camillus Social Center in Maumere, on the island of Flores, was the reference point for the various charity initiatives. Each month about 200 families were able to benefit from a substantial food gift package, alleviating, albeit partially, their economic difficulties. The joy, the smiles and the expressions of gratitude were as recharges of new enthusiasm and social commitment for the missionaries".
The missionary also tells of how the construction of special houses for the mentally ill often tied with chains or with a foot stuck between two large woods displayed in open gazebos (see Fides, 15/3/2019), has been seen as a pioneering initiative which has found great appreciation from the families of the sick and from the local authorities. "Seeing many sick people, thanks also to medical care and the availability of specific medicines, recovering in health and re-entering family and community life was very significant and important".
"Furthermore - continues Fr. Galvani - there was school support for several dozen students who were thus able to face school costs and dream of a safe and better future for them, their families and their great country". "In all these charitable initiatives - he concludes - the Missionaries, inspired by their Founder St. Camillus, have always had great faith in Providence and knew how to build wonderful 'bridges of love' with generous distant friends who have often felt proud of being part of their Indonesian Camillian missionary team. Now it will be nice to be able to dream of realizing other new little miracles of good with them, for the years to come". (LG/AP) (Agenzia Fides, 20/6/2022)