I don’t normally do this on my blog, but I want to share something I read on a friend’s FaceBook page recently. I don’t know where she found it; there was no reference for it, I’m sorry to say. But, it filled me with hope even as it filled my eyes with tears. Italy is having the worst time, it seems, with the coronavirus, God help them. So many sick, so very many who have passed on. It is so upsetting and we pray for them daily. But here’s a story that moved me so much that I felt prompted to post it here. I pray you find it inspiring and that you will be praying for all the dedicated, selfless medical professionals who are fighting for the lives of their patients every hour even as they put their own in danger. And let us pray for an end to this virus, for the healing of the sick, and the repose of the souls of those who have succumbed to it.
Thirty-eight-year-old Luliane Urban from Italy who was infected with Covid-19,
witnessed the extraordinary testimony from a doctor, Lombardy: “I was an atheist, but
now I’m returning to God.” “What we have seen and done in our hospital for the past
three weeks has been nothing but a nightmare. First a small stream, then growing, like a
large river; A dozen, and then hundreds, have flowed. Now we are not doctors but
selectmen. It is the selectors who decide who should live and who should be sent home to
die… Until two weeks ago, we and many of my colleagues were atheists. One hundred
percent believed that science excludes God because we are doctors.
I used to look at my parents at church and mock them. A 75-year-old clergyman arrived
here nine days ago. A poor man. He was struggling to breathe. But he always had a Bible
in his hand. He reads it to the patients who are dying and reads them quickly. He places
the Bible in the hands of some and we looked at it intently.
Two of my colleagues have passed away. Some are sick. In total despair. We have been
mentally and physically whole. We see this at this point. Now we agree. As human
beings, we have reached our limits. There is nothing we can do except increase the death
toll of the people we care about. We began to notice his work. We begin to feel that God
begins where man ends. Slowly we approached the priest; We started talking slowly.
Truth be told, we who were atheists until yesterday, now pray to God for peace. Pray for
us to help care for the sick. The courage that was supposed to be lost has somehow
returned. We are more energetic now. Yesterday, that seventy-five-year-old priest died.
That means 120 deaths in three weeks. He helped to give us the peace we never expected
in just nine days, when all hope was shattered. Remembering that we were helped by his
weakness…the good shepherd went to the Lord. …Now I realize I am nothing on this
earth. But I will live like that priest until my last breath for others. I am happy to have
returned to my God when my loved ones were suffering and dying around me.”
Sometimes we must sink to the depths but God is there, too. He is everywhere. That 75 year old priest was the face of Jesus for those doctors. What a transformation. Praise God from whom all blessings flow! Beati pauperes spiritu.