Some serious problems had arisen in a family of benefactors due to misunderstandings.
Don Orione, ill and suffering, (as we can see from the date of the letter, he had only a few more days to live...) forgot his own problems and became a mediator of peace. With great tact and strength. He had performed so many works of charity during his life. But helping people to live in peace once again was not among the least of them. It was certainly one of the most difficult.
It was also one of the most useful, because, it is true to say, "peace is worth more than anything."
Tortona, 16 January 1940.
Peace! Peace! Peace!
Dear Messrs. G. and A., my distinguished benefactors.
May the Lord be always with us!
At this time I am praying especially that peace, which is Christ's gift, will be a source of benefit for your good selves and for your distinguished Families.
With this in mind, but without anyone knowing, I have arranged a day of prayer for my patients with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament for tomorrow, Wednesday.
And today I make bold to write this letter because I would like, with Divine help, to prevent the scandal that is about to happen...
- And I would like to write with holy freedom as a priest
... and, if you allow me, as a friend and a sincere one also. I beg and urge you, in the holy name of God, to make peace among yourselves. If you go any further along the road you are travelling it will become less and less possible.
You know that the longer the differences go on between relatives, the more the hearts are hardened.
Are you waiting for death to come? But death would be even more terrible without peace! You must therefore make peace, and do it now. If not, there will be no more time!
- Thinking of your deceased parents and children.
You yourselves must make every sacrifice with the greatest and best will in the holy memory of your Mother and your Father. Then everything will turn out right.
You will then leave a good example to your Children! I understand that, in order to reach the peace that is hoped for, you will have to overcome a good bit of self-esteem; you will have to surmount many not inconsiderable difficulties, but everything can succeed where there is good will.
For peace and harmony you have to leave aside all other interests. No sacrifice is too great for peace; with good will everything is possible: peace is worth more than anything!
I tell you in the name of the Lord that, if there is reconciliation in your souls, a great light of grace in the peace of the Holy Spirit will extend over your Houses. Your health, and that of your Dear Ones, will be better and your lives will be longer and more serene.
Please excuse me if any words may have come out which could have displeased you; it was certainly not my intention. You have known Don Orione for many years; you know the respect and the affection that I have for you. You must look at the reasons for which I have written; you must look at the spirit and not at the words.
I remain always your most humble and faithful Servant in Jesus Christ.
Fr. L. Orione
"I leave you peace, I give you my peace."
(Jn 14. 27)