She made the way from Italy to Jasna Gora by walking
Emma Morosini, 85-year-old Italian, walked 45 days to reach Jasna Gora. She started from Castiglioni Siviere (province of Mantova) and walked over 1,300 km. It was not the first time for Emma Morosini to make such efforts and it was not her first visit to Jasna Gora. ‘The idea to make a pilgrimage to Jasna Gora originated some 17 or 18 years ago when I was seriously ill and the doctors told me that there was no hope for me, only dedication to God the Father’, Emma Morosini recollects. ‘In such circumstances I promised the Mother of God that if I recovered I would have go to Lourdes. After two years it occurred that I was well again and I wanted to keep my word, and I walked to Lourdes. I had no experiences but I quickly became enthusiastic about making pilgrimages because the people I met understood my love for the Mother of God. I very often experienced people’s kindness: they invited me, gave me whatever food they had; I experienced goodness although I faced negative attitudes; some thought I was a Gypsy, a tramp, a vagabond, a con-woman or even insane. This first pilgrimage of thanksgiving made Emma Morosini desire to make other walking pilgrimages to the Mother of God. Throughout the year she helped the sick in hospitals but when summer came she began taking the pilgrims’ routes. She has already been to Fatima and Guadalupe, and in 2002 she visited Jasna Gora. ‘I am living a pilgrim’s life out of love for Our Lady, Mother of God’, the Italian stresses. ‘On the other hand, I must say that my pilgrimages are some kind of catechisation. The people living in small villages, where priests can serve from time to time, can see me praying the rosary and they rejoice that they can meet a believer, someone who keeps praying. I can see that this is some grace for them.’ Emma Morosini is impressed by the Polish religiousness that she has had the chance to get to know on her pilgrim’s trails, and especially she has been astonished to see so many people wanting to confess their sins. ‘I admire the faith of those praying at Jasna Gora, which I cannot see in my own country. People queuing to confessionals, waiting so long to receive this sacrament – something extraordinary. Jasna Gora is one of its kind. You can only compare it with Guadalupe’, Emma Morosini says. The biggest problems she has faced during her pilgrimages include: the lack of knowledge of the local language and consequently, not being able to communicate, blisters on her heels, the weather and problems with finding accommodation. ‘I had troubles to find accommodation almost every day’, the pilgrim recollects. ‘I did not have much money and what I had I saved for Saturday and Sunday. On Saturday I usually found a small hotel, I rented a room and on Monday I set out again. I never walked on Sunday. I dedicated the Lord’s Day to prayers and of course, I rested. And on other days I slept in the open air, on bus stops, benches in parks. But rain was the most difficult problem. How often I got wet, how many thunder storms and hail I experienced but I reached my destination luckily.’
Interview made for the Press Office of Jasna Gora and for Radio Jasna Gora on 27 August 2009.
Translated by Fr. Jan Pach, OSPPE