A few days ago, we received from Fr Daniel Rodríguez, the General Delegate of Venezuela, a letter bearing the significant title “Venezuela, a country to mourn”. In it, Fr Daniel informed us of the emergency situation the country is going through at the moment and how the Carmelites are trying to be of help to those who have suffered the most from the crisis.
In the letter, Fr Daniel has highlighted the moral and spiritual foundation of the political and social “night” into which the country has plunged. In our brother’s opinion, the situation can be described as a “voracious anarchy”, in which crime and delinquency are spreading through an increasingly impoverished society, in which no exit is seen from a situation in which so many lack a dignified sustenance, while necessary foods and medicines are scarce, as well as other means for developing a dignified life.
Faced with this bleak panorama, our brothers and sisters try to multiply themselves in order to help others, even when they too have to endure hardships: even the minimum of fuel necessary for cooking is lacking; the outages of electricity are continuous and prolonged causing, for example, our sisters in Maracaibo to suffer temperatures of 42 to 50 degrees centigrade [108 – 122 F] without electric fans.
From the Curia General, as well as from the Teresian Carmelite family of Colombia, Brazil, Panama, the Dominican Republic, Peru, Chile, Spain, Argentina and CITeS (Avila), among others, they receive various kinds of help, that has allowed them to distribute food and medicines to the most disadvantaged. The Secular Carmel keeps open a dining room in Mérida in the “El Salado” slum, but they can only offer one dish of weekly food.
The letter, of which we have made a very short resume, can be read in full in Spanish in the Spanish news section.