PARAGUAY, Rolando José Benítez Velázquez •
I lost my mother two years ago; it was a very powerful experience for me as I greatly depended upon her. I believe it is something that I will never overcome. I distanced myself from religion, I distanced myself from God, and I felt empty until a very special person in my life showed me a road that I never thought I would take: she invited me to the missions.
With many doubts and not much desire, I accepted that invitation without knowing what awaited me. I began attending the meetings, and I asked myself if it was worthwhile, if this was truly going to help me, sometimes I asked myself what am I doing here? I did not understand the call that I was receiving and that it stayed that way until the day of departure. Strangely that day I felt an emotion upon arriving at the town, I noticed a lot of desire and a rare feeling that united all of us. The first day we did not go on mission, but I felt something was about to happen. On the second day, when it was my turn to go on mission, I did not understand what it was about, but I felt a certain hope.
Of course my group took the most difficult and unpleasant road possible of those we could to go on mission, and I believe that that it was one of the best decisions that we made. We arrived at the first home; I almost did not speak. I just listened and I tried to understand what I was supposed to do, this was my first time to go on mission, and I didn’t know what I was going to say!
Finally it was my turn to speak at someone’s home, a small house that was somewhat remote, where this lady lived alone. I began my conversation with her, and I introduced her to the Blessed Mother. Somewhat tearfully she commented that her mother had died, and that she could not overcome that loss since they were very close, this truly surprised me greatly, and when I asked her when she had died, she told me two years, two years!
Could this be true?? It was the same amount of time my mother has been in heaven. I had a lump in my throat until I could say these words: “Lady, sometimes life is not just, but God always has something for us, sometimes we do not understand his commandments, but we must have faith and go forward, to go forward in memory of our mothers, who surely expect this of us instead of crying because they have gone to heaven.”
I firmly believe that this experience changed my life; it helped me to overcome myself, and to understand that even in small things, one can accomplish great things. By giving what is upsetting us to the Blessed Mother, Mother Mary, she can give you a lot. Furthermore being a young man, who perhaps is not worth much and who may not be the best example, but with a little bit of will, I can do so much for someone else. After seeing the light of hope in my neighbor’s eyes, a person can be affected, can be filled and have the strong conviction that SHE really works miracles.
Source: Tuparenda Magazine, September 2015
Original: Spanish. Translation: Celina M. Garza, San Antonio, TX USA – Edit: Melissa Peña-Janknegt, Elgin, TX USA