9 September: Feast of St. Peter Claver, a Spanish
Jesuit who for 38 years dedicated himself to the spiritual and material
well-being of enslaved Africans in Cartagena, Colombia.
At the beginning of the 16th century, the Spanish
Jesuit Peter Claver gave himself heart and soul to the service of enslaved
Africans in Colombia. Following his example, let us ask the Lord to give us the
desire to serve our brothers and sisters, especially the most rejected.
Even today, multitudes of men, women and children
still live like slaves. For all these people, for all those who work for their
liberation and dignity, let us pray to the Lord through the intercession of St
Peter Claver, who became the slave of the slaves.
Let us also ask the Lord to give us the strength to
commit ourselves also to the liberation of those who suffer from various forms
of slavery even today.
Peter Claver wrote to his superior in 1627, he recounted the arrival of a slave
ship in the port of Cartagena, “So we addressed them, not with words, but with
our hands and our assistance.”