How two parents from the north of Peru dealt with their daughter’s illness, sustained by the love of God and a large extended family.
“One evening while we were having dinner I noticed a big lump on our youngest daughter’s throat,” said Marisela, the mother. “The doctor examined her, and a scan revealed a 5 cm tumour. He advised us to see an endocrinologist for further investigations. The specialist ordered a biopsy which unfortunately confirmed the presence of a malignant tumour with metastases which needed to be operated immediately. It was shocking news that none of us was expecting. When I got home, I shut myself in the bathroom to give vent to my feelings and through my tears, I asked God – Why this suffering?”
“It was an extremely challenging time for me. The operation was very expensive,” continued Luis, the father, “but I didn’t want Marisela to worry about money. We would have asked for a loan to have the operation carried out in the capital, Lima, but where would we stay during and after the operation? We got in touch with the people responsible for the Focolare Movement to which we belong. Our Centre was already occupied by a number of Venezuelan families who had immigrated to Peru because of the difficult situation in their own country. However a member of a religious order from the Movement happened to be offering accommodation to guests of the congregation. Being welcomed in this way really made up feel God’s closeness. In Lima the neoplastic specialist ordered a second biopsy and further tests to be carried out, just to be sure, but the diagnosis was confirmed so this last hope was also dashed. Our daughter burst into tears but the doctor consoled her by assuring her that everything would be fine.”
The community of Lima,” said Marisela, “did everything it could to raise enough money for us to pay for the operation, while a raffle organised by our eldest daughter covered other expenses. The day before the operation, Father Nacho came to see us, administered the anointing of the sick to our daughter and accompanied us to the clinic. During the operation, an army of people were praying for the operation to be successful. And it was!”
“The doctor decided that radioactive iodine therapy would be needed,” explained Luis. “Even that was too expensive for us! But faith can move mountains and heal the sick, we told ourselves. The doctor helped us to register our daughter with the SIS (Integral Health System) and in checking her details, discovered that she had already been registered. Unbeknown to us, someone had been paying her medical insurance for three months. It was such a surprise for us! It meant that she could have all the medical examinations and treatment she needed for free”.
“Once again,” concluded Marisela, “we have seen the power of prayer, and we are so grateful to this great Focolare family for the love they have shown us in so many ways and for not leaving us alone during this very difficult time.
Edited by Gustavo E. Clariá