During the time I served in Moldova, we were able to move as far as Palanca, on the border with Odessa, where there is a refugee camp that takes in those fleeing the city. Here too, lives hang by a thread. Our commitment for now, focuses on the Don Bosco Centre in Chisinau, where they are housed about forty refugees, mainly women and children, as is true everywhere in this period. A woman in her 70s, a former English teacher in Kyiv, is there with her husband and her daughter. She wakes up in the night with sky-high blood pressure. There is little medicine left in the boxes she has with her. She asks me for more and tells me about her chest pain. She has it when she walks and when her anxieties rise. During the day there is little for them to do. She offers to teach English to the children in the oratory. This distracts her and she feels better.

As family doctors in Italy know well, what patients are looking for is often consolation.  Here that need is extreme, hidden within health problems, that still need appropriate treatment. And, as always, what is most needed as humanity.

Allessandro Mecenero, Cuamm


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