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February 16, 2024

Damien of Molokai: We Lepers

February 16, 2024
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Becoming One with the Outcasts

The author Robert Louis Stevenson described him as the “father of all who love goodness.” What did Damien do to deserve such praise?

He offered his own life to the outcasts of society in Hawai’i. He left his life in Belgium and traveled to Hawai’i to serve the lepers. There were no priests on the island, so he had to shout his confession to priests on boats passing by!

The journey of Joseph de Veuster, who would become Saint Damien, from a young boy lost at a church fair in Tremelo to a selfless servant among the lepers of Molokai, is a story of extraordinary faith and compassion. 

Brand New Audio Drama

The new audio drama series "Damien of Molokai" from The Merry Beggars brings this remarkable story to life, capturing the essence of Damien's mission through vivid storytelling.

Joseph de Veuster was born in the small Belgian town of Tremlo in 1840. But Damien was destined for a life far beyond the fields of Belgium. Driven by a burning love for Christ, he joined the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary. Little did he know, his path would lead him to the shores of Hawaii, and eventually, to the leper colony of Molokai—a place that would become both his mission and his legacy.

Setting Sail for Hawaii

In 1864, Damien set sail for Hawaii, stepping into a world that was on the verge of a crisis. The Hawaiian islands were grappling with an epidemic of leprosy, a disease that ravaged communities and left its victims in exile on the island of Molokai. It was here, among the outcasts and the forgotten, that Damien found his calling.

Damien of Molokai after contracting leprosy

With unwavering determination, he worked to transform the lives of the people of Molokai. Providing the sacraments, building houses, providing medical care, and bringing the faith to a place mired in despair, Damien helped transform the island from a colony of outcasts to a community of faith.

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