Short hair, unkempt beard, lively eyes and a decidedly alternative clothing, simple but unconventional dictated by fashion and society. He has a lively chatter and listening him you feel as you are facing those orators from ancient Greece who with zeal and passion fascinated squares with their knowledge. This art, that today is often associated with the political class with a negative connotation,Short hair, unkempt beard, lively eyes and a decidedly alternative clothing, simple but unconventional dictated by fashion and society. It has a lively chatter and in listening seems to be faced with those speakers of ancient Greece who with zeal and passion fascinated squares with their knowledge. This art, unlike today that the political class is often saddled with a negative connotation, was a real craft and Maurizio Elia Spezia, 34, could be one of those rhetoricians who along the way of knowledge has made a real change of direction.
At 21 he decided to live on his own, working as engineering and editing the blog “The indomitable ratty”, a name that shows his lively and energetic temperament. In those years, fascinated by the world of politics, of modern ideologies and in how the media propose themselves as “absolute truth”, Maurizio departs from the Church beginning to nurture a real hatred for it. “I thought there was no good, on the contrary I was sure it was a bad institution, that God was an invention and Jesus just a character that had nothing to do with my story.”
So while the questions in his life were multiplying and responses decreasing, in 2010 he decided to make a concrete gesture to finally take distance from the Church. Through internet he managed to obtain the forms by which you can ask to be “debaptised”; it’s basically a bureaucratic procedure that cannot take the sacrament away but that allows people to claim their “atheism” back.
As soon as he received the confirmation of the success of this procedure, it became more and more urgent the need to deepen the desire for truth that has alway animated him and that clashed constantly with a ruthless rationalism, not always able to satisfy his sense yearning. Meanwhile, with some peers he was carrying on the group “Lo Sai” (“You know”) a space dedicated to current issues that had and has the sole objective of informing. And then it happened what Maurizio called a “logic conversion”, a slap to those who believe that faith is just a matter of rosaries and prayers; certainly part of it, but the religiosity involves man in his totality, touching not only the heart but also the mind. Preparing an issue that would have to deal with his friends, he felt that he was facing a profound and radical choice. “I had to choose which side was best for me, what path to take, if that was good or bad.”
The encounter with the Lord for Maurizio took place in the intimacy of conscience: God was waiting for him at a crossroads, that decision that is at the root of the story, of the man and his existence. One option apparently trivial but powerful in its effects. So something in him began to move and gradually awakened in his heart the desire to return to the Church, the same that he had fought with force but that now looked like a place where the good, the highest good, originated.
In the Archdiocese of Milan he meets Don Piero, a priest who will accompany him and his girlfriend in a process of re-admission to the Catholic Church. This route will culminate on September 13, 2012, when Maurizio again receives baptism, and just as in the parable of the Prodigal Son comes home to the Father that he had let him take his share of the inheritance: the talents of intelligence and wisdom with which somehow he has sought happiness. But demonstrating that on his own he was unable to find it fully, so Maurizio, with the stride of someone who knows how to come back, goes “home”.
That day is just the beginning of a conversion that is renewed every day and that, as he says “will never end”. He began setting aside the pride of those who believe they have understood everything, and took the form of entrusting their lives in the hands of Someone else. The hope, Maurizio says, “is the ability to imitate Christ” who knew how to love fully, for ever.
Translation provided by Maria Rosaria Mastropaolo