He who walks straight rarely falls

Roberto Filippini, Vescovo di Pescia

The fact that the path, the way, the journey, represents a symbol of life and human behaviour, is the heritage of all the great narratives: from Gilgamesh’s epic, to Homer’s Odyssey, to the biblical book of Exodus, up to Pinocchio and the unforgettable Red Shadows by J. Ford.

Along the way we are put to the test by travails and obstacles, we come across those who both share and challenge our passage, and our eyes are opened to sudden discoveries and landscapes we have never seen before; when faced with different possibilities we have to choose and discern the right path to take to reach our goal.

On our journey we learn to know ourselves and others, our mystery is gradually revealed as we build alliances and friendships. Sometimes a love is born, and we always grow, mature, and turn into what we are. This is life: it is therefore important to walk straight to avoid falling.

Wisely, inspired writers frequently use the word “way” to indicate the law of the Lord that allows us to walk straight and unfalteringly towards the goal of a successful life “while the way of the wicked leads to ruin” (Psalm 1).

The Gospel according to St. Luke dedicates ten of the twenty-four verses to the journey of Jesus towards Jerusalem (from 9.51 to 19.11) so that almost all His life is stretched into this itinerary, amidst encounters and rejections, successes and setbacks, teachings and revelations.

While the Saviour’s entire journey leads towards Jerusalem where he is to fulfil his mission, that of the Church, in the second book of Luke, the Acts of the Apostles, starts off from the holy city to reach the extremities of the earth and evangelise all humanity. This is a journey that still continues today …

Walking therefore, is a necessity and a great occasion for Christians and all human beings. Even a small stretch like that of Il Leonardino, is filled with wonderful surprises: we can breathe in the air of the genius of Vinci and perhaps sense his noble curiosity about the secrets of the creation, drawing from his love for man and reliving his quest for the infinite … May the Madonna della Neve, bless all those who “walk straight”!

Roberto Filippini