Talking about a private and intimate subject, like helping others, is not easy. Helping fellow human beings is a privilege that each one of us should use with discretion and modesty, according to his or her own possibilities.
This is what I did until now, realizing that my actions were a drop of water in the sea but with the certainty of having a moral duty to do all I could for the well-being of people less blessed than I. Experience taught me that if we pass on generosity, if we share the happiness and the goodness that is in each one of us, we will get it all back, and multiplied. “In the kingdom of love – an Irish theologist wrote – there is no competition, no possessiveness, no control: the more love we give the more we receive.
” When I was a boy I asked for help too, I knew the condition of being in need too, I looked for support, for assistance from my close friends and family. After that, I had the chance, or better the joy, to be able to give back: a growing desire to help, becoming a responsibility, a binding priority, and an ethical duty.
The soul needs love as much as the body needs air. Love, as Dante teaches us, is the hidden rhythm of the universe (and “moves the sun and the other stars”): as soon as we see the sparkle of love, it is essential to offer its warmth, like a blessing, to those who are hungry, confined to a or in need, prisoners of hardship. Over the years, I tried to make myself useful in the best ways I could. But I had the feeling that it was not enough.
That’s why I decided to commit fully in this venture, giving up the privacy that charitable deeds usually demand.
That is why I created a foundation to put all our strengths together, to make sure that my actions are not “a drop in the sea” but unite with all other drops – as Mother Theresa teaches us – to become an Ocean. To my friends, to those who for artistic or professional reasons had the opportunity to know – and hopefully to appreciate – my work as a singer and the intellectual integrity throughout my career, I ask for a tangible support. I ask you to join me in the battle against poverty in developing countries, I ask you to respond to significant challenges in the social field and scientific research.
The A.B.F. bears my name: it is not a sign of vanity; it is a way to write in stone a commitment, and taking on a responsibility. I commit myself to monitor and to guarantee the quality and transparency of each phase of each project. Professionally, I am dedicated to my biggest passion, music. Life, after all, has been very generous with me in my professional career as well as in my private life, and I have to give back to others. What many people think is my first problem in life, is actually the last on my list; the challenge is not to invent a face or a sunset, but to find a way amongst hundreds of daily difficulties (that money and success don’t help diminish) with a strong will not to give in to compromise, not to lose coherence (and the serenity that goes with it), and not to lose myself. I invite all my friends to give in to the temptation of love, contributing and supporting the Foundation. When one loves, and when we let ourselves be loved, the fear becomes boldness and the emptiness becomes fulfillment; as Saint Paul reminds us: “love is patient, love is good; it does not envy, it does not boast (…) Love always protects, it always trusts, it always hopes, it always perseveres.”
If you are still in doubt, try to close your eyes. You will be able to look far, to think without distraction in the intimacy of your conscience about what we are and what is the eternal aspect in the secret of each of our existences. I am sure you will then agree with my modest thought that sparked the project of the foundation and that has become its mission: Our faith in love and justice calls upon us to build a better world than the one we found; it calls upon us to give back to the community all the good things that we have received, so that the less fortunate or the most vulnerable members of our society will have a chance to achieve a life full of opportunities and beauty, so that those who take up the challenge will find the energy and real possibilities to thrive in their lives.