The experience of Jenny López, director of the Chiara Lubich Centre for the Elderly, in Lámud in the Peruvian Amazon. The story of her meeting with L. 

One morning, I was  working in my office in the Council Buildings when I received a file asking for help in authorising the admission of an elderly woman to our centre. The file only carried the name of the person, L., and the document number. I asked for a more complete report and an updated diagnosis of the person’s state of health. I was told that that the elderly woman had been a victim of domestic violence and physical abuse caused by members of her family. She, a vulnerable person, had bruised arms, was unable to move and was in a state of total abandonment. It was prudent that she be removed from her home and country. I was the person in charge of  Casa Hogar, that is the ‘Chiara Lubich’ Centre, and I asked the local authorities to speed up the paperwork for this case because I felt it was  urgent. The court needed to make a ruling to permit the elderly lady to leave her home but the judge was on holiday. At that point, I decided to assume all reponsibility for the case and to offer to admit the lady immediately. It took us seven hours to reach her on the bumpy roads. We found her alone in her little house, asleep, almost dying. I approached her and called her name but she did not answer. I immediately signed the document that allowed us to move her from her home.  We spent that night in a hostel. I could not sleep, my mind and soul were focused on what might happen. I got up early and offered all my fears to God in prayer.

The next day I asked for the assistance of a social worker to take over from me so that I could return home to my husband, my children and my elderly parents, but no one was available at that time.

It was difficult to decide what to do but I felt inside that I should not give up. L.’s life, hanging by a thread, depended entirely upon our little efforts.. And so another day passed.

I whispered to L.: ‘You are suffering like Jesus on the cross and I am here with you. If you have to go to heaven, you will not be alone, I will accompany you’. I spent the night with her, then, the next morning, the doctors arrived.  They took care of her and gave her fluids: only then could we transfer her to the Hogar where everyone welcomed her with great affection.

However, 23 doses of a very strong medicine were needed. I made the rounds of many pharmacies and, finally, one seemed to have some but the assistant doubted that they had sufficient. However, when he looked in the box, there were indeed 23. He was very surprised: ‘That’s how it is when you walk with God,’ I told him happily.

After that long journey, L. was able to rest. A few days ago God called her to himself, surrounded by the love and prayers of us all, and having received the anointing of the sick. Inspite of the sadness we feel,  everyone is left with a sense of joy because they have loved  this dear old lady who suffered so much, but who leaves a trail of love and prayers from people all over the world. Her brief presence among us came as a gift that we felt we needed to approach “on tiptoe” but also with a renewed trust in God.
Jenny López Arévalo (Lámud, Amazon, Perù)

Interviewed by Gustavo E. Clariá


  • Grazie!
    Mi ha toccato il cuore e Dio mi ha parlato : fai cosí anche tu – dona la tua vita ha chi ha bisogno ed è vicino a te.
    Apri gli occhi

  • What a beautiful intervention God gave through you Jenny. Her last days on earth were filled with God’s love and her suffering was finally over. Very moved by your esperience. It is amazing what happens when we put all our TRUST in God. Go well.

  • Cada ser humano tiene un compromiso social de ayudar al más necesitado, si cada uno hiciera su parte como lo hizo Jenny Lopez Arevalo, el mundo fuera mejor y pudieramos diminuir tanto dolor en la humanidad. Mientras que las personas decide en cumprir su compromiso social, yo haré como Jenny, asegurarme de cumplir el mio.

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