Log-book: July 1999
In the country of the Catarrhs
Some Christians are used to inviting me to meet them, to listen to them, to share and celebrate. I am happy to be back in this country so full of history and opposition to external powers. Quickly I understood that these Christians have suffered by the Church. If they keep their distance from her, they never get away from her, neither abandon her. This suffering gave them a spiritual maturity that I much appreciate. Their faith in Christ is more personal and deep. They know that they are made free. The message from the Gospel gives them the desire to be themselves. Jesus has become a ferment for their human life. His words like a seed have grown into them.
I thank God for this new upcoming. The Church experiments the difficulties and the joys of a birth. Thanks to these Christians, the Church goes back to what she is: a call to be free, a seed of life, a seed of humanity.
Save Aspe valley
It is a delight to discover this valley at the heart of the western Pyrenees. It is a remarkable place to live. Nature spread out yet without restriction. After ten years of struggle I came to a final meeting to contest the building through the valley of an international highway for trucks. After the Mont-Blanc tunnel catastrophe, the mood has changed. Now many think that a railroad can be reset instead after 30 years of standby on the French side. But money still controls the choices: like every where, what counts is financial benefit. Those who made the choices will they again be influenced by the sacred goal of profit making ?
I noticed the great number of young people who came from every where, they feel concerned by this issue so characteristic of this end of the century.
We made a long chain of several kilometers between us, in the heart of the valley, at the very same spot where 3 000 people from France and elsewhere bought as co-ownership this land to prevent the building of the highway. I had forgotten that I was also a co-owner, nice surprise!
PS: Partenia some figures, 1998
Total number of pages presented in seven laguages on the WEB last year: 66 430
Total number of visitors last year: 114 000
Increase of visitors last year: 22'000
Month average of visitors: 9 500
Number of e-mail messages received by Bishop Jacques Gaillot: 2 500
Number of e-mail messages received by the Webmaster: 1 460
Active Forum members form October 1 to December 31, 1998: 393