Jan 16th - Joseph Vaz
In the shifting winds of political change, it is rarely the people at the top who suffer, but the marginalized. When politics and religion intertwine then it is even worse, because political loyalty become confused with religious belief. Add in the native populations who are not even considered within the purview of colonizers and triumph of the Devil becomes evident.
But there also exists people who transcend politics and practice their Faith amidst hardship and opposition as well as those who devote their lives to it.
When we so perfectly devote our lives to God then the miracles never cease. We are as great a conduit for the love and power of God as we allow ourselves.
What are my excuses? Which ones are legitimate and which ones do I hide behind?
Let it known to all who see this "Letter of Bondage", angels, human beings and all creatures, that I, Fr. Joseph Vaz, sell and offer myself as a perpetual slave of the Virgin Mother of God. This I do through a free, spontaneous and perfect act of devotion which in law is known as an irrevocable act among the living. I give myself and all that I possess so that She, as my true Mistress and Mother, may dispose of me and my possessions as She wills. And because I consider myself unworthy of such an honor, I beseech my Guardian Angel and the glorious Patriarch St. Joseph, the most blessed Spouse of this Sovereign Lady and the Saint whose name I bear, as well as all the citizens of heaven that they may obtain from Her this favor to be included among the number of Her slaves. I confirm this and seal it with my name. I would have liked to sign it with my heart's blood. Written in the Church of Sancoale, at the foot of the altar of the same Virgin Mary Mother of God, Our Lady of Health, on this day the 5th of August, the feast of Our Lady of Snows, in the year 1677.
-- Letter of Bondage
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