Saturday, May 28, 2011

Brazilian adventures

I am finally home after a week of intense work, a very bad trip back (almost 24 hours of travel), a jungle spider bite, but also many blessings.

My work meetings were very succesful and in a beautiful place by the sea, crossed by a river and surrounded by mountains filled with the most beautiful nature possible. I was so sorry that I did not get to enjoy the place more as I had to spend it working from dusk to dawn in my event for 230 persons from over 15 countries plus. I am so very tired, but also so happy from this and my meeting with the bishop.

I left the resort for my meeting with the bishop yesterday at 1:30 p.m Rio time. I was eager with anticipation. This was to be a crucial meeting.

On our way back our bus received a call from the bus that had departed earlier that there had been a very bad traffic accident and that they recommended we reroute.

I had plenty of time still to arrive for the meeting, but I started panicking specially when we went into a unpaved road in the middle of the jungle and very high mountains. We lost phone coverage and it took forever to cross several small villages. It really was out of a movie.

I was really reminded that we were in the Mata Atlantica of Brasil, really the jungle which covers the south of Rio de Janeiro State and goes right into the sea and islands, beautiful, but not something that I needed when the meeting was less than an hour and a half away.

The night before I had been bitten by something (they think it was a spider) and my whole leg couldn´t move and they had to call the doctor in the middle of the last party of the whole sales meeting. My whole anke was swollen, red and the pain was intense. I could not walk, not even a few steps.

There I was without even able to move with my leg up a table on ice with many people around dancing discussing in my very bad Portuguese with a very young doctor who only told me:
we do not know which animal it was. I have no idea really, and but be at peace we have an ambulance here!!!

In the end it got better and now I am home resting and waiting for the inflammation to decrease and see if I will need to see a local doctor.

I thought how in the world will I be able to go see the bishop if I end up in the hospital!

So when we started going into the jungle for the detour I again truly felt in the end of the world and not being able to call when I knew the doctor was already waiting for me.

I knew then these were trials that are normal in this work and that I needed to be at Peace that God would fix everything

But I am a true Martha and I am a worrier. This was really, really hard for me specially after an hour and a half of jungle and my brazilian counterparts saying we are really very far away from Rio at exactly the same time of the meeting.

But then I started to relax and think:

This meeting has been planned by God and if He wants this to take place, no spider, no jungle and no accidents will stop it and if the time is not right, then He will stop it.

Later a person from my company loaned me a Brasilian phone, we did some changes to the settings and in the end I was able to call the doctor that was going to take me to see the bishop. She had been very worried about me and thought I had gotten lost in Rio. I was a whole hour and a half late, but the bishop was very kind and accepted to see us.

As we went into his office I was so very suprised to see this very, very tall man, around 50 plus, with inmense kindness in his eyes and that surprisingly in his office had an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe and St. Anthony.

I knew then that She had arranged all of this and that St Anthony also (my family as I have written here has a very, very special devotion to him)

Here I was many many thousand of kilometers from Mexico and the Virgin he was in his office is the virgin to whom we consecrated this project. The Virgin from my country, instead of Aparecida (the Virgin from Brasil) and I was reminded that the whole continent has been consecrated to Guadalupe. I could not help but smile

We had over an hour to meet and he listened intently, asked many questions and in the end said we need to continue this conversation.
I will keep in touch, this is just the beginning

Then surprisingly he said:

I invite you to present Cr.MS and Napro at the Brazi lian Congress of Natural Fam ily to take place in October in Brasilia (Brazil´s capital) and to organize a congress just to present this with the directors of the Fami.ily and life movements of Rio. A whole congress.

Never in a million years would I have thought he would move so fast.

Then I told him that I did not speak Portuguese and he joked that I had several months to learn ... or that I could to it in slow Spanish and most people would understand with the 2 languages being so similiar.

I asked him then if English would work, thinking about bringing somebody from the US instead for this and he said it would not as most people do not speak it. So we will need to learn Portuguese or find several Spanish speakers willing to help.

Then he mentioned he knew of several possible women and doctors that might be interested.

At the end of the meeting we asked him for his blessing and in Portuguese he blessed again the whole project so it would come to Brasil and to all of Latin America. I had tears in my eyes since it was so so beautiful.

As we went out the doctor asked me to go into the chapel to give thanks and as we went we could hear the 6 o´clock bells from the big Church nearby. Then I see another big portrait of Our Lady of Guadalupe, the only image in the Chapel of Our Lady and the doctor tells me: the bells are tolling at this time since in Brasil is the time of Our Lady. And there I was lookig again at Her image. I still am so very moved by this.

Thank you all so much for your prayers. They truly moved heaven and earth so this meeting could take place.

No spider, no accidents, no bad roads stopped it and again we have a bishops blessing. Such a gift. Now from a doctor who heads the Epis.copal life commission of La.tin America.

I am still so in awe from Our Lady and God


  1. I am glad it was a good trip!! Aside from the bite of course...sorry to hear about that.

  2. You are such a warrior to have such a good attitude and to be able to continue after such a horrible spider bite.......
    I am glad to hear that the trip was a success. That is so exciting that you are spreading napro all over.

  3. You know what-- if you hadn't been so late because of the bus ride, you likely would have missed those 6 pm bells!

  4. This is truly amazing! I am praying for this continued success AND for your healing! Your "bite" sounds agonizing, but the devil will not prevail! Consider that Spiritual Warfare! You are doing great things!

  5. Every pain counts! The graces will be delicious! Be patient my dear, dear friend. I know you´ll see that veeery soon.

  6. You continually amaze me and I look forward to the next installment of this great adventure to bring Napro to Latin America - how blessed are you to be God's great tool in reaching so many!!! Our Lady definitely has you under her mantle and I will be praying for continued blessings! Oh, and that spider bite sounds horrible, I hope everything is okay now!!!!

  7. I heard about your blog through Therese at Hannah's Tears. What a journey! Thank you for sharing your story. This is encouraging, despite the obstacles (or rather, because of the obstacles). The stuff of saints!