Adriana Mascagni

Adriana Mascagni: The spark of the beginning at Sant'Ambrogio

Peppino Zola, the husband of Adriana Mascagni, recounts his wife's funeral: "The Event happened again."

How great is the Holy Mother Church when faced with life's dramatic circumstances, with her tender and essential liturgy, capable of giving meaning to everything! How fascinating are Christians when, united, they recognize the greatness of Christ and sing His praises! How beautiful is our movement when it is caught up, like a child, in the beauty of its songs and the evidence of truth! How sweet and joyful it is to love one another all as brothers, recites Psalm 132 at compline! These are all evidences that I carry in my heart after the Holy Mass with which we said goodbye to Adriana in the beautiful basilica of Sant'Ambrogio in Milan on December 23. A friend wrote this to me, "The Event truly happened again at Sant'Ambrogio, and we experienced again the spark of the first encounter, which is forever." Whenever we are as simple as children in the face of what the Lord makes happen, we see the Event happen again, which makes us understand and experience the evidence of truth, even when flooded with tears. At Sant'Ambrogio, conscientiously singing Adriana's wonderful hymns and listening to Bishop Massimo's tender and intelligent words, we saw the unity of a whole people, consisting of different generations, give witness to the truth and beauty of Christ and His Church in a way otherwise impossible to experience and in a world that no longer wants to look into the merciful face of the God among us.

Personally, I can say that I have seen a unity that immeasurably surpasses all differences of opinion and all existential difficulties. Countless people have told me and my children and grandchildren that Adriana's songs have helped them on their journey of faith. That is why they wanted to be there, thus testifying to their adherence to Christ, which inevitably makes a people united. We are living a particularly intense moment: I dare say that the Event in Rome on October 15 (with the Pope's invitation to be united and to return to mission) and the Event that happened in Sant'Ambrogio are clear signs that the Lord, confronting us with the ultimate truth of our experience, is asking us for a qualitative leap in our personal and communal maturity, one that will make us overcome all doubts and resistance.
The songs we sang so nicely in Sant'Ambrogio (the choir and all the soloists were stupendous) made it clear to us that we have a great responsibility to bear witness everywhere and in every circumstance to the unity we experienced there (wasting no more time on secondary things), the fruit of following Fr. Giussani's extraordinary charism, which prompted a young girl like Adriana to give voice to the common spirit that invested us.

Read also - Message for the death of Adriana Mascagni

Even our Archbishop of Milan stressed the importance of the gift given to Adriana, emphasizing that the best way not to waste it is to live "a deeper communion and a more joyful wisdom." The death of such a brilliant and beloved person forces us to face life's real problems, abandoning those that are only ideological, and cannot help but make us fall in love again with a fundamental word of Christian experience, which is the word "friendship," spoken by Jesus in the Gospel and taken up in a powerful way by Fr. Giussani. Thus we can only be grateful for all that has happened to us in our now long history, even if tears, I repeat, are inevitable companions these days.

Peppino Zola