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Sunday, August 23, 2015

It's raining, but isn’t everything…

It's raining, but isn’t everything…
While the rainy season is at its peak, the activities continue. During this period of tension and frailty, some problems emerge in an impressive way. Among them, the accusations of witchcraft! If a person becomes ill or dies, they search for the "guilty ones", meaning someone who has caused with its "magical" abilities the disease or the death. The victims of these accusations are always the weak and fragile (elderly, widows, children) who are often tortured and beaten, forced to drink poison in order to see if they are innocent (if after the poison they don’t die) or guilty (if after being poisoned they die). This attitude goes so far as to bury someone alive! In the past days they had reported this problem as being present in the village of Bokongo, 13 km from Bozoum. On Sunday Fr. Enrico went over there, and Thursday all the accused together with the young and the elders of the village have come here to Bozoum to discuss and resolve the situation, which ended "only" with the get-away of a threatened family,  which managed successfully to return to the village. The work of human promotion and evangelization is a never ending one, but it is true that we are all called to the Freedom of the Sons of God. The Association of Rice Producers of Bozoum was ready with the product (rice) to be sold to WFP and distribute it in the schools, instead of importing from Asia. The quality is very good, and the humidity is within the limits. Children can eat good rice, at low cost, while at the same time will grow the economy and the local production.

Sunday was the birthday of Hyppolite: 18!
Here are the latest updates by Alessandra from Savona: 
Saturday, August 15 Hyppolite has turned 18! We felt the need to celebrate and we did it with a nice group of people. We managed to organize a surprise party at the hospital, succeeding. These were the organizers: Emanuela mom, dad Fiorenzo, Alessandra, Marisa, Flavio, Grandmother Teresa, Paul, Fr. David, Antonella, Michi, Gianni and Paola! With an excuse I brought out of the room the birthday boy, saying that they had to clean the room, while others have now entered to set it up!!! Once everything is set, I have taken back Hyppolite in the room. I open the door and.... surprise!!!! A choir of twelve singing "Happy birthday to you" and Hyppolite is amazed! After all the greetings and best wishes with some emotional tears, the party begins: focaccia, pizza, pretzels (thanks Paul!!!), chocolate cake, sparkling wine and many beautiful gifts for Hyppo! Ah, let's not forget the balloon of Minions, which we could not miss! I take this opportunity to thank (also on behalf of Hyppolite) all those who have dedicated some of their time, with a phone call, with a message or being present in such an important day for him, especially now that he is facing a time not easy at all. I'm pretty sure he will be grateful forever.

As for his clinical situation we talked with Dr. Anselmo. He says that with regard of the infection Hyppolite is getting better reacting well to antibiotic therapy. They will do a biopsy to see how deep the infection is and what kind of infection Hyppolite has. Then they’ll decide a possible change of the present therapy. This coming week a plastic surgeon from Santa Corona Hospital will visit him. Incidentally this Surgeon is also following my brother! For now no Cvc. At the most it can happen when he comes home (I think it’s going to take a lot) in case he has to continue the therapy. Finally (sticking point) he is going to face further surgery to "fix" the basin ... The head of the femur is completely eaten by the infection and this has compromised everything.

For those who failed to see the 5 TV Shows about Center Africa, broadcasted by the TG of Tv2000 last week, here is the link (they are all in one video): 

It is on newsstands the number of the Journal de Bozoum

I produttori di riso di Bozoum
la coopérative du Rix de Bozoum

la veranda di Bozoum

discussioni su stregoneria ecc
réunion sur la sorcellerie

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Today is a Feast!

Padri e studenti in formazione a sant Elie, Bouar

August 15. Today is a Feast!
Today is a liturgical holiday! The Assumption! The Virgin Mary, taken up into heaven body and soul, image and reminder to every man and woman, who bears within himself, like her, this longing for what is infinite and real gift. Today, Saturday 15, in Central Africa too is feast. No queuing at toll booths, no beach, but for those who want is a time of prayer. Traditionally we go to Doussa, a village 4 km away from Bozoum, where we celebrate the Eucharist. The week was relatively quiet, at least here. I went to Bouar, Thursday. It’s a 500 km driving round trip, with roads that continue to deteriorate. At Bouar I meet our communities. These days our youth are studying with a French father, Fr. Luc Marie, the writings of St. Teresa of Avila, our foundress. The young students are from Central Africa and Cameroon. A beautiful imagine of hope! In Bouar I take part in some meetings for Caritas, Justice and Peace. I am in charge of these Organizations in the name of the diocese. I make a stop in Baoro to see the Church of Kouisso Baguera, started some years ago by Fr. Renato, built by Enrico Massone, and finished just recently, complete with bell tower and paintings. A long job but now is an area of peace and prayer sown in the roads of this Country

la chiesetta di Kouisso Baguera

strade routes roads....

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

It was a severe week, here in Bozoum.

It was a severe week, here in Bozoum.
The situation about security is still unstable. The authorities don’t have the courage to oppose violence and crimes. When they are able to capture a criminal, they let him go in few hours, fearing consequences.  Last week, a young man entered in the pre-electoral census rooms and, armed with a knife, threatened the employees and stole a camera! He has been arrested but in few hours he was a free man.
On Tuesday, the same story of violence. A couple of young men stabbed the Prefecture Secretary General (the 2nd main authority of Bozoum State). Also in this case, the official version of the fact is that the perpetrators are unknown. While The truth is that everybody knows them and also where they live and what they do. In all Country the situation remains very unstable. In Bangui, the capital, the U.N. soldiers entered a neighborhood in order to arrest some “warfare leaders”, but they have been attacked in turn, lost a soldier and a tank to the enemy and 3 other tanks went on fire!

On Thursday I left for Bangui, due to some meetings, but most of all to welcome sister Paola of the Mercy Sisters. She is coming from Cameron and will stay few weeks with sister Adolphine, who is from Chad. They come here because the Franciscan Sisters, who are in Bozoum since 2004, are definitively going back to Italy after 11 years of life and work in Bozoum and after 28 years in Central Africa. On Saturday morning, the children of the Orphans Centre “Arc en Ciel” came in large number to greet the sisters. On Sunday morning we continued with a Thanksgiving Mass: the church was full, overflowing! Our people did celebrate with songs, dances and happy gratitude. After the Communion, the awa-dodo (the liturgical dancers) came in procession bringing some small presents for Sister Graziana, Chiara, Solange and Sira. In spite of the emotion and sadness for their departure, we give thanks with joy for their friendly maternal presence during these long years. Despite the many troubles, the war and sicknesses, they faithfully did stay at our side and they have showed us the maternal face of God, especially with the poorest ones, the orphans and the sick ones. 
Thanks Sister Sira, for your work at the dispensary, your attention to the sick people, your grumpy disposition but winning personality! 
Thanks Sister Graziana for your attention to the poor among us, for your joy in teaching the catechism, and.........the lettuce stolen from our garden! 
Thanks Sister Chiara for your work with the children and the orphans and because behind your fragile appearance you hides a motherly courage! 
Thanks Sister Solange for your work and attention to the poor and the orphan ones. We’ll miss your device for the mate!

I conclude with some updates from Savona about Hyppolite, updates just arrived from Alessandra!
Good morning! Hyppolite has been hospitalized on Monday morning for an assumed osteomyelitis, the leg was swollen (probably infected, due to fact that it is on the side of the sore), and they did right away the blood analysis, a tampon and a hydrating infusion. In the afternoon they gave the antibiotic! On Tuesday an echo-cardiogram and echo-Doppler, everything seems all right! On Wednesday afternoon X-ray to the spine and pelvis and this afternoon an echo-graph! Thanks to the antibiotic the leg isn’t swollen anymore and he feels definitely better! There is no fever and he eats like a wolf! Yesterday the dietician stops by to give him a hyper caloric diet! He devours big slices of “focaccia con prosciutto......beside the antibiotic they are giving him vitamins by veins infusion. On Monday morning the anesthetist should insert the Pic, so he could have the therapies done at home, and finally, we hope for the discharge and...................right away to the beach enjoying the Mediterranean sea”.

inondazioni a Bangui
les pluies à Bangui

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Few things ... but really meaningful!

Gauthier, fiero del suo certificato elettorale
Gauthier, avec son certificat electoral

Few things ... but really meaningful!
These days across the country is going on a kind of census: the electoral enrollment to be allowed to vote in October. The all operation alternate deeply different steps: from hope to payments problems affecting personnel, from a very easy organization to the lack of roads in order to reach the registration centers, from hope to the decision to give up.
There is a certain laziness to go to be enrolled, probably due to the fact that the hope to see changes is very little. The lack of hope has root in the politics. Unfortunately the same people present themselves to be elected, and this goes on from decades. The same who can continue to dominate and enrich themselves, without coherence or a positive project focused to the common good. And not only in Central Africa!
These days are visiting us Fr. Davide Sollami along with three journalists (two of TV2000 and one for Teleradiopace, Chiavari). They are here to realize some TV and Radio reports in sight of the Pope's visit to Central Africa, on 29 and 30 November.
With them we take a tour visiting some of the activities of the Mission. A look to the rice fields, a visit to the polling stations, a meeting with Muslim women who have remained with us in Bozoum, and whom we stay close with some material aid.
Monday finally comes the important day of the departure of Hyppolite. I asked to a Dutch “humanitarian” NGO to book a seat on the “humanitarian” plane connecting Bozoum with the capital, but they simply refused.
Anyhow on Monday Hyppolite left with her mom and Fr. Enrico, direction Bangui. The roads are very bad, especially the first 87 km, but after more than 9 hours driving, in the evening they arrived in Bangui, and Tuesday afternoon Hyppolite could take his flight with “Air France” arriving in Genoa on Wednesday, welcomed by friends and a very special family from Savona (mom Emmanuela, dad Fiorenzo, Daniel, Alex and Marta). Hyppolite will be their guest. On afternoon of the same day he have already received the medical attention by a friend, Dr. Anselmo. For Hyppolite is the beginning of his adventure in Italy.

Hyppolite con sua mamma, in partenza da Bozoum
Hyppolite avec sa maman, au départ de Bozoum

le risaie
la rizière

il pollaio quasi finito
les travaux du poulailler sont presque terminés