Day of the Camillian martyrs of charity: Message of the Superior General

Dear confreres,

Peace and joy in the Risen Lord!

The Easter period we are experiencing reminds us that Jesus has conquered death. This good news that has revolutionized the world and gives us all hope of eternal life, transforms us in such a way that our entire existence becomes an Easter experience to the praise and glory of our Risen Lord Jesus.

Our Camillian ministry is also an expression of the Easter experience: when pain and suffering abound, we become faithful companions on the journey and humble witnesses of hope.

Strong in our fourth vow, “to serve the sick even at the risk of our own lives,” we do our best to open the hearts of men and women to the Easter light. Our Institute is, as St. Camillus said, a foundation “very necessary to Christianity, very much in line with the holy Gospel and the doctrine of Christ our Lord; he underlines this mission so much in the Old as in the New Testament also with the example of his most holy life spent caring for the sick and healing every kind of disease” (Testament Letter).

Therefore, blessed is the one who will consume their life in this holy service. It is not merit but only pure grace that has fascinated many of our predecessors whom we commemorate on every May 25th as martyrs of charity. In fact, the charism recognized by the Church in St. Camillus and which we profess with that special vow, carries within it that special grace to assist the suffering neighbour even to the point of giving one’s life.

Since the beginning of our history, Camillus and his companions have distinguished themselves not only by serving the sick but above all by serving them in difficult and prohibitive circumstances such as in plagues. With great courage, many of them lost their lives translating that fourth vow into action. Throughout the history that has been passed down to us, the Camillians, in the Church and in the world, have always held in honour that “so precious talent that our Lord has placed in our hands” and that we also profess and live as one of the most important treasures of our Order.

It must be guarded and transmitted with the necessary enrichments specific to our time, just as we have received it. This belongs to the conviction, responsibility, and generous testimony of each of us who, “moved by the Spirit and believing in the love of God, embrace the charism of mercy towards the sick,” according to our formula of profession.

Dear confreres, on the anniversary of the birth of our founder and the commemoration of our martyrs of charity, my personal gratitude and that of the entire Consulta go to each of you for your Camillian consecration and for the daily commitment you undertake for the holy service of the sick.

To each of you, to the lay collaborators, and to the young people who continue to embrace our charism, St. Camillus continues to send his “thousand blessings.” May his intercession and the protection of the Virgin Mary, health of the sick, sustain in you the strength and joy of being simply and convincingly Camillians.

Fr. Pedro Tramontin MI

Superior General