Father Damien Of Molokai-Suffering Saint

Father Damien Canonization: October 11, 2009

Father Damien Canonization: October 11, 2009

“Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.  John 15:13

Stauros USA  is most pleased to celebrate the life of Father Damien. Father Damien’s efforts, his vocation, his dedication to a life of selfless service is very much aligned with the mission of Stauros USA and International.

We share a great message: What Would Fr Damien be Doing Today…..

From the Hawaii Catholic Herald  (With Permission)

 Journey to a Canonization: April 3, 2009

This is one of an ongoing series of articles related to Blessed Damien who will reach the ranks of sainthood on Oct. 11 Damien’s work continues in India By Patrick Downes | Hawaii Catholic Herald Question: If Father Damien were alive today, where would he be? Answer: Perhaps in India, where Hansen’s disease has stubbornly stepped into the 21st century despite the drugs that should have halted it decades ago. The saint-to-be actually does reside in spirit in the eastern Indian city of Bhubaneswar at the Damien Social Development Institute. There leprosy and its savage effects are combated with standing and mobile medical clinics, rehabilitation programs, nutrition programs, housing projects, vocational training and education. The institute’s stated vision is “To eliminate human sufferings in order to revive and enhance the spirit of equality and dignity.” It also participates in the worldwide campaign to eliminate Hansen’s disease. The institute was opened as the “Damien Institute” in 1979 by Sacred Hearts Father William Petrie, an American whose priestly vocation was inspired by a biography of Father Damien he read as a boy. Father Petrie came to India in 1975 to work with Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity at a Hansen’s disease facility in Shantinagar, west of Bengal. Mother Teresa asked the priest to turn his attention to those with the disease, particularly the impoverished, in Bhubaneswar where he started his program. The Damien Clinic, the institute’s main medical clinic, treats hundreds with a team of doctors, a pharmacist, a lab technician and others. Mobile clinics two or three times a month bring services to a number of leprosy communities and houses, and to dozens of slum areas. Rehabilitation programs deliver wheelchairs, crutches, hearing aids, and walking sticks for the blind to those that need them in surrounding villages. A nutrition program provides school children in one leprosy community, many whose parents provide for their families by begging, one balanced, nutritious meal a day. The Damien Social Development Institute helps young men and women gain vocational training as tailors, mechanics, paramedicals, drivers, weavers and electricians and also runs an interfaith hostel which provides food and board for male students attending a local college. The institute is a project of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts, Father Damien’s congregation, and many of its department supervisors are priests of that order.

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2 Responses to “Father Damien Of Molokai-Suffering Saint”

  1. Mozlink Says:

    For more info on Damien see http://www.leperpriest.blogspot.com

  2. Dr James Paul Pandarakalam Says:

    Gandhiji said about Fr Damien,”The world of politics and of the press knows few comparable to Fr. Damien of Molokai.It would be very worthwile to discover the source inspiring so much heroism”.Not only Mahatma Gandhi got inspiration from Fr Damien,he has been a guiding star for millions of people working in the health profession.Dr Ganapati’s proposal to bring out a stamp to mark the occasion of canonisation of Fr Damien is to be taken seriosly as Fr Damien could be a role model for the younger generation who has not heard about him.

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