Don’t lose faith

The wave of violence that is affecting various regions in the world, including Brazil, is terrorizing populations more and more. The massacre that occurred last Friday, 12/14, in a school in Newtown, in the State of Connecticut/USA, has dismayed us all. After killing his mother at home, a young 20-year old man invaded the school and killed 26 people, 20 of whom were children. He then committed suicide. We earnestly pray to God and ask Him to bring spiritual comfort to the families of the victims as they come to terms with such a huge drama.

We seek answers that can throw some light on why we have reached such a point of madness. If we analyze in depth the causes that lead to this type of brutality, to hunger and to so many other misfortunes, we shall note that this is mainly due to the emotional instability of people.

Pari passu with public policies dealing with security, access to quality education for everyone and programs that eradicate poverty, it is essential that we look after the Souls. Take care of the Spirit, reform the human beings. And everything will be transformed for the better.


When Robbie Parker, the father of Emilie, a 6-year-old little girl, and one of the victims in the tragic episode in the North American school, addressed the media, he courageously showed us the example that should be guiding all of us. Brimming over with emotion, he found the strength to offer support to all families affected by the massacre, including that of the gunman: "As we move on from what happened here, what happened to so many people, let it not turn into something that defines us, but something that inspires us to be better, to be more compassionate and more humble people."

Tela: Peter Paul Rubens


Despite the troubled times we are living through we must not lose Faith, as shown above, and we must fight for the triumph of Good. To those who perhaps have not yet managed to share this belief, I dedicate to them a reflection I wrote in my book Cartilha de Reeducação Espiritual [Spiritual Re-education Booklet]: “Little by little, the selfish organization of society shook the collection of traditions that had been brought together by all those who struggled and suffered to construct the people of the Earth. All this is being shaken and it may seem to many that we are entering a collision path we cannot deviate from and that the whole of Mankind will disintegrate once and for all. But this will not happen, however bad things may appear. What will collide and be destroyed is the civilization of evil. (...) As the Apostle Peter wrote in his Second Epistle 3:13: ‘We are looking forward to a new heaven and a new Earth, where righteousness dwells.’”


Arquivo BV

Alziro Zarur

Francis of Assisi

I invite my reader friends to offer up with me a touching prayer by Francis of Assisi (1181-1226), the Patron Saint of the Legion of Good Will. He loved little children very much. This is based on the Portuguese version by Alziro Zarur (1914-1979):

“Lord, make me an instrument of Your Peace;/ Where there is hate, allow me to spread Love;/ Forgiveness, where there is wrong;/ Faith, where there is doubt;/ Truth, where there is lie;/ Hope, where there is despair;/ Light, where there is darkness;/ Union, where there is disharmony;/ Joy, where there is sadness.

“Oh Divine Master!/ Grant that I may not so much seek/ To be consoled as to console;/ To be understood as to understand;/ To be loved as to love;/ For it is in giving that we receive;/ It is in forgiving that we are forgiven;/ And it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.”

P.S.: As for the "end of the world", which according to the Mayan Calendar will take place on December 21, we can sleep peacefully, because our struggling planet is going to continue. In fact, we’re the ones who may put an end to it (Isaiah 24:5 and 6).

José de Paiva Netto is a writer, journalist, radio broadcaster, composer, and poet. He is the President of the Legion of Good Will (LGW), effective member of the Brazilian Press Association (ABI) and of the Brazilian International Press Association (ABI-Inter). Affiliated to the National Federation of Journalists (FENAJ), the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the Union of Professional Journalists of the State of Rio de Janeiro, the Union of Writers of Rio de Janeiro, the Union of Radio Broadcasters of Rio de Janeiro, and the Brazilian Union of Composers (UBC). He is also a member of the Academy of Letters of Central Brazil. He is an author of international reference in the concept and defense of the cause of Ecumenical Citizenship and Spirituality which, according to him, constitute “the cradle of the most generous values that are born of the Soul, the dwelling of the emotions and of the reasoning enlightened by intuition, the atmosphere that embraces everything that transcends the ordinary field of matter and comes from the elevated human sensitivity, such as Truth, Justice, Mercy, Ethics, Honesty, Generosity, and Fraternal Love.”