On March 13, 2020, Luigi Brugnaro, the Mayor of Venice, visited the Basilica of Madonna della Salute, which was built by Baldassarre Longhena in memory of the heavenly relief provided by the Mother of God during the plague of 1630.
The photography is eloquent: Luigi Brugnaro, clutching the tricolor scarf, kneeling on the steps of the altar above which is enthroned the icon of the protective Virgin of the city of the Doges.
The mayor recited the prayer to the Virgin composed by the Patriarch of Venice, Bishop Francesco Moraglia, and proceeded with the consecration of the city, in his position as mayor.
An initiative that is not isolated: the previous day, it was the mayor of Sassuolo, Gianfrancesco Menani, who also consecrated his city in the presence of several priests.
But perhaps because he is a member of the Northern League, the mayor of Sassuolo has been attacked by his political rivals, who cried scandal on the grounds that the mayor had not respected ... safe distances with the priests during the ceremony! This is what the Gospel calls “straining out a gnat” (Mt 23:24).
Honor those mayors who rediscovered a sense of priority. As Fr. Davide Pagliarani, Superior General of the Society of St. Pius X, writes in his Letter to the faithful during this time of epidemic: “Providence still teaches us through events even in our days. Humanity—and each one of us—has this historic occasion to return to reality, to what is real and not to a virtual reality made up of dreams, myths, and illusions.” Our help lies in the Lord.