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 published: 2009-06-02

"Child, where are you going? Don’t forget I’m your mother!"

I realised that my Mother was there to tell me that nothing can happen to me if she is present in my life. A testimony by Marta Pomata in Paraguay

 

Hier bin ich. Hier war ich die ganze Zeit.

Marta Romero con su familia

Marta Romero with her family

Marta Romero mit ihrer Familie

Das Hausheiligtum

El Santuario Hogar

The Home Shrine

Das Hausheiligtum

Fotos: Pomata © 2009

It all happened back in March as I was travelling home. Before I leave home, I usually pause by our home shrine and repeat the usual prayer: "I place everything in your hands, Mother." I took the route I always take to fetch Manu, my youngest son to his day care centre, but he wasn’t with me that day because he was sick.

That morning, I travelled down Artigas Avenue from the centre of town at the normal speed, perhaps even slower than usual. I was accompanied by my secretary, Rodrigo, and as we approached the intersection between Venezuela and Artigas Avenues, I saw a large truck coming down Venezuela Avenue, which runs perpendicular to Artigas and has a steep slope. I was certain it would stop when it reached the corner, since the traffic light had already turned red.

My car, a single cab van, was the only vehicle travelling down Artigas Avenue at the time and the traffic light was green for me.

I soon realised the truck had lost its brakes

My co-driver and secretary gave a loud and terse shout of "CAREFUL!" forcing me to brake abruptly, with my foot flat on the brake pedal. I soon realised the truck had lost its brakes and was travelling down the slope in reverse towards me, scattering its load of stones everywhere, the smallest of which was the size of my van’s wheels.

One of them landed in front of my car and the truck, moving at the speed its load allowed, hurtled down the slope towards my car and was half a metre away when it made an abrupt turn and started ziz-zagging down Artigas Avenue in reverse. My heart nearly burst and could only watch as the other vehicles, motorcycles and pedestrians jumped out of the truck’s path.

All this happened in a matter of seconds and I could only watch open-mouthed, astonished and unable to move from the middle of the avenue as the truck driver tried to gain control of his vehicle just before it ended up in the opposite lane along which many vehicles were travelling.

At a time when I repeatedly asked the Blessed Mother where she was that I did not feel her presence

As I tried to catch my breath between my tears, I could only say over and over: My God, my God. I arrived home, when to my home shrine and decided to pull out a Father Telephone card. And there she was, saying: "My child, where are you going? Don’t forget I’m your Mother."

I began to cry but I was no longer inconsolable because I realised that my Mother was there to tell me that nothing can happen to me if she is present in my life.

This happened at a time when I wasting all the opportunities in my life, including time; at a time when I repeatedly asked the Blessed Mother where she was that I did not feel her presence, at a time when I often complained to Mary about her lack of help in my many problems, which for me, were the worst of problems.

Here I am! I was always here!

An avalanche of thoughts crossed my mind that I even felt a cold chill down my spine. What if my four-year old Manu, who never wears a seatbelt and always travels standing up in between the seats of my van, had been with me on his way from the day care centre since this happened at the time and on the road we always took? What if I had crossed the intersection half a second earlier just as the truck entered the avenue? What if instead of slamming on the brake, I had pressed the accelerator in that moment of fright? What if there had been nobody next to me to shout "CAREFUL! And what if I had continued without braking? What if the large stones that fell everywhere had hit my car and what if I had lost control and had hit another car or a house?

Mary shook me saying: "Here I am! I was always here!" Once again she sheltered me, held mw her arms…and I…I was reminded once again of what is really important in life.

Translation: Sarah-Leah Pimentel, South Africa

 


 

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