CHILE, José Manuel Velasco Jouanne / María Fernanda Barreiros •
Humbly and gratefully, in this testimony we want to reflect on the generosity of Divine Providence, which used every tool at the right time so that we could all act together in favor of the Campaign, whose goal was to bring warmth and hope to 25 families who lost everything in the fires last February in Santa Juana. —
As the Family Movement of Montahue, we were on the scene after the fires and were ready to help the local pastor, Ricardo Valencia, with whatever he needed. At that time, we were able to provide the necessary assistance to meet the needs of the moment, such as water tanks, hoses, clothing, tools, etc.
When winter came, the needs were different, as rain and cold made their presence felt greatly.
Many felt desolate and needed warmth and hope.
100 roofs for Santa Juana
The parish priest’s campaign was called “100 Roofs for Santa Juana,” and we as a Family Movement set out to bring warmth and hope by raising the necessary funds and donating 25 wood stoves, since wood is the only fuel available in the countryside.
The task was difficult given the unexpectedly high cost of each stove and the urgency to help as soon as possible, before the end of winter.
With affordable costs in mind, we looked for artisans who could help us with this task, but they had the difficulty of producing within the planned time (1 or 2 pieces per week).
Discussing this problem within the family movement, we contacted the commercial manager of Estufas Bosca, a large producer of stoves.
A covenant of solidarity
When we contacted him, he asked us to send him a letter with more information about the objective of our campaign, in order to be able to handle it with the company’s board of directors, which we immediately accepted, and he proposed the modality of 1 x 1, that is, for every stove we bought from him (at a very low price), the company would add another one for free.
The news spread quickly and the enthusiasm of the community was general, allowing us to reach the proposed goal within a month and a half.
This meant that the number of ovens was doubled: It was no longer 25, but 50 stoves that would be delivered to the needy families!
On July 19, an official handover took place in the parish of Santa Juana in the presence of the pastor, the mayor, the Bosca manager, Fernando Martinez, who had come especially for the occasion, representatives of the Family Movement of Montahue, our advisors Father Juan Ignacio Hormazábal, José Aravena, Sister Amelia and the beneficiary families.
It was a wonderful day in which we were all very happy and grateful for so much generosity. We presented a stove along with a picture of the Blessed Mother and the prayer of confidence, and we received smiles and a touching embrace.
But the Blessed Mother had another surprise in store for us: Fernando Martinez announced that Bosca, grateful for the invitation to participate in this action and in view of the need in the region, would donate 50 more stoves. This meant that the number of stoves to be delivered doubled once again, because now it was no longer 50, but 100 stoves that would be delivered to the families.
On Saturday, July 22, we went to Santa Juana again to deliver a second shipment, making a total of 75 stoves. The rest will follow!
Every instrument in its place
Still moved, we are grateful to the Blessed Mother for making us instruments of this wonderful action in which Divine Providence has worked in abundance.
The motto “Nothing without you, nothing without us” was reflected in everyone: in Father Ricardo who asked for help, in our leaders Susan and Leonardo who involved us in the mission, in our group “Children of Mary, Messengers of the Father” who gave shape and continuity to the Campaign, in those who prayed for its success, in those who spread the word in their surroundings, in those who helped economically and in the Bosca Company for their great generosity.
Thanks to the precious participation of all, the motto of our Branch, decided at the meeting last May, became a reality: “Family, let us be foundation of unity and mission”.
Original: Spanish. Translation: Maria Fischer @schoenstatt.org