Saturday, 22 March 2014

The Elderly Man of the Sacred Heard

Posted in Facebook, on December 6, 2012, by Sergio Poratti. 

ALMOST four years ago, I went to the "Chamber Orchestra Concert" at the Basilica Sacred Heart, here at La Plata City (Buenos Aires Province). It was very good. I know most people do not read long posts, because they also tell me... but hey, this is stronger than me... hehe.

I left house at 6:40 pm., towar the Sacred Heart, arriving at 7:15 pm., fifty minutes before the Mass. They were already starting the third decade of the Rosary. As always, las 7:30 pm. was the Mass, and a little before they asked me if I wanted read the psalm. I said yes. The chapel began to fill after the homily.

When we finished the Mass, we went to sit on the benches of the "central aisle". I think I sat in the fourth bench, counting from front to back. A noisy family was sitting to my right, and on my left there as a place for one person.


It turns out that last Tuesday I went to the conference that the Father Mancuso would dictate in the Catholic Book's exhibition. There I saw Fr Diego, to Bonehead, to Brother George... and other acquaintances. I stayed near them near the bottom. Lo and behold, suddenly I see a venerable old man, tall and thin, wearing a white shirt and dress pants. He also sat alone at the bottom. When Father Mancuso made ​​its appearance (entered by the back door... that is, by the entrance, heh), this man got up and went to greet him. He conveyed me much peace. I thought, "He will be a religious?" I did not think it appropriate to ask him, but I was impressed by his presence, heh.


No, it's a joke! The story continues, for your delight... or your torment. Because now we travel back in time to yesterday. Are you reading, right? Well, it is then that I was sitting on the fourth bench in the central nave of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, and the entire basilica was getting full of people. But the place on my left continued empty. I thought: -Well... why has no one occupied this place, if there are a lot of people here inside? I looked around me. I think there ere over one thousand people.

But suddenly, of the hundreds of people who there were, you know who sat? Exactly!: the mysterious, elderly man. A lady distributed us a pamphlet with the titles of the songs or themes, do not know how to say. The elderly man intrigued me... would he perhaps be a soul from purgatory? I started raving! Who was he? I did not know what to ask him! What should I have asked him? I stayed reading the brochure.

So, wanting almost distract myself, I was trying to guess the meaning of each German word of the booklet. Because the titles of the songs were written in its original German, with its translation into Spanish. On it I was focused when suddenly the venerable old man asks: -Do you know German? 

-Huh? No, no... 
-Oh... and do you study music? 
-No... either... 
He had an accent a little strange ... but it doesn't seemed totally foreign. He adorned his face with a constant smile of affability, transmitting a lot of peace. 
-What is your name? 
-Sergio... and you? 
So he told me his name, but I do not remember. And he spelled its surname: Chłopiec. So this is written, but it is pronounced "shawpee-ehtz". This is Polish... means "child". 
-And your last name, what is? With this I could show my family's knowledge. I took the opportunity. But it did not last. 
Meanwhile, the Basilica was still filling up.


We keep talking, and I asked him if he was from here, if he was born here in La Plata. He was like thinking how he could explain me. "I was born in Italy, he continued, when my parents were passing through there. But I lived here in La Plata, although I am now living in San Luís (I think that province told me.) Now I'm just passing through here, because I'm visiting one of my blood sisters. And, by the way, I take to come to these events, because where I live there is not any (much). I am a priest". There was a brief silence. It was very hard for me, but trying to overcome, hehe, I asked him: -Really? What congregation?

Looking forward, as a film actor, said: -no, I'm diocesan priest...


I asked him about his parents, and he told me that they were captured by the former USSR (Russia). Sorry if I narrate the story with a mistake, forgive my lack of knowledge on these subjects. He explained to me that in the Second World War, back in 1932, Russia and Germany were allied and attacked Poland. Those two countries agreed to divide Poland, half each. Her parents had a two story house. One day (or one night), Russian soldiers entered the house, they took possession of it, and took dads Father as slaves to Russia, where did hard labor. What works? I asked him. They worked the land. As farmers, or something. But another day, I do not know what Germany did, and then Poland and Russia were allied against Germany, a common enemy. In the meantime, his parents let him free and traveled and traveled all the way to Italy. In Italy, thanks to the English government, get to travel to Argentina. There, in Italy, he was born.


Being here in La Plata, at ten years ... Ten years! he enters the Junior Seminary ... back in 1950-something ... but the vicissitudes of life made to continue studies at the seminary in St. Louis. His mother encouraged him to talk to a priest she knew there, so he could continue his studies. He was ordained by around 1970 ... or '72 ... about.


The concert was about to begin.What a blast! The lady who was on my right, already impatient, starts clapping by herself... huh! She started cheering and clapping continued, and applauded... of course, until the entire basilica was a single clap. At least I'm not the only one broken face. Well... I already felt that the chorus would start singing. I told my friend (ah!): -Do you know? I know some Polish names... 'and I told him about the Polish Redemptorists that I knew...
-Zylak...? does it mean anything?
-Zylak... Yeah... It's Polish... but no, I do not know what it may mean...
-I also know the surname "Wrublewski"... and this? Does it mean anything?
- Ah! Wrublewski?? In the town of Berisso there is a family with that last name... well... in Polish "Wróbel" means "sparrow"... Did you know the Pope Polish?

We talked of this Great Holy Father... He said: 'Oh, you did not see it? He came twice to Argentina... I saw it the second time he came-I do not know how you play... and he told me how he got the ticket to enter the theater... forgive the repetition... heh.

THE truly END

If you have come to read all this, I stand and applaud you, haha.

A kiss / Hugs / Blessing.

Choose from three options that you want.

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