A New Look at the Life of St. Peter Claver: “The elderly who dream and the young who prophesy”

Issue 1802

15 February 2018

When he met with Jesuits during his recent journeys to Colombia and then Myanmar and Bangladesh,[1] Pope Francis referred to St. Peter Claver in a way that invites a new reading of the life of this saint.[2] The expression used by the pope was charism, but he did not so much speak of the charism of Claver, but rather the pope presented the very person of Claver as a charism. Claver made himself the “slave of the slaves,” becoming for them a real Paraclete – a counselor, advocate, intercessor.[3] By his very life he prophetically denounced the social blindness of an era that had introduced the slavery of black people.

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