One common element in Dona Lucilia’s interventions is the desire to instil in hearts the certainty of the help that she will obtain for all those who turn confidently to her intercession
As time goes on, Dona Lucilia has been obtaining more and more surprising favours for those who, regardless of the situation in which they find themselves, turn to her with true faith and confidence in her intercession.
An unexpected problem
This is what happened to Luciana da Silva, a resident of Mairiporã (Brazil). Various car problems and a change of residence had resulted in expenses that left her in great financial straits. These were gradually being overcome, but just when she thought the worst was over, a new setback came knocking at her door…
“One day,” she recounts, “I went to the christening of my friend’s son and, when I started the car to return home, all the dashboard lights came on. Worried, I immediately asked Dona Lucilia that it be just a false alarm and that there would be no serious problem with the car, since I had just had it repaired and was spending a lot on some necessary jobs in the new house just then.”
Soon after arriving home, Luciana sent a video of the dashboard with the warning lights on to an employee of the car dealership, explaining what had happened. He cautioned her that the car should not be driven in that condition, and that it was necessary to have it towed there to be inspected.
She continues: “When the vehicle arrived at the dealership, an employee called me. I asked if he could just give me an estimate, as I was on a tight budget and, above all, I was praying that it was just a false alarm. Hours later he called me and said: ‘Luciana, I have a report on your car. There is both good and bad news.’ I asked him: ‘Can’t it just be good news?’ Then he informed me that it would be necessary to change several expensive parts of the car, including the fuel pump, and that the total cost would be six thousand reals [$1050 US].”
Dona Lucilia’s deft intervention
It is not difficult to imagine what this news meant for Luciana… “At that moment, I almost broke down in tears; I told him that I did not have that kind of money and, therefore, I could not repair the vehicle. But he urged me to remain calm and continued to explain: ‘The good news is that I will subsidize the parts…’ Disconcerted, I asked him what he meant, as my vehicle was an older model and no longer under warranty.”
What a surprise when she heard the employee explain: “I have been voted the best employee of my company in Brazil. For this reason, I receive ten thousand reals each year for the benefit of whomever I please, and I chose you, because I saw that you have a little statue of Our Lady of Graces on the dashboard of your car and you seem to be a person of great faith! Always remain that way! So, your cost will be only five hundred reals for the labour.”
Luciana was so perplexed that she could not even thank him at that moment; she could only weep to see how Dona Lucilia had solved the problem with such generosity and deftness: she had made up for the lack of financial resources and made sure that the car was returned to her in better condition than before.
When she went to pick up the car at the dealership, Luciana narrated the story to the employee, who was deeply moved. She then gave him a photo of Dona Lucilia, which he kissed and placed in his wallet.
Thus, we see how this kind lady always attends to those who come to her with their anxiety and problems, but demands from them some drops of confidence in the midst of perplexity, to “earn” the merit of a greater faith in her intercession
Another resident of Mairiporã, Melissa Cunha, writes to tell us how Dona Lucilia came to her aid.
Being unemployed, and in a position of having to help her mother pay off several debts and cover the expenses of the house, Melissa daily prayed the Rosary asking Dona Lucilia for the grace of getting a certain job.
Every day her hope grew in the help of this kind lady, who did not let her down. After some time, she received a message notifying her that she was being granted the desired job. Beaming with joy, Melissa began once again to pray to her benefactress, this time to thank her for the favour received.
Since then, she started to consider Dona Lucilia as a kind godmother who would be willing to help her in any situation. Accordingly, when her niece became ill and did not respond to any remedy, Melissa knew who to turn to… She promised to pray in front of a portrait of her “godmother” if the child recovered, and the result was not long in coming: The next day, her sister called to let her know that the little girl was in perfect health.
A serious and sudden illness
Fernando Waldemar Palencia, from Guatemala, tells us how Dona Lucilia sweetly and effectively intervened in his life at a time when his health was unexpectedly shaken.
A retired colonel from the Guatemalan Army, he had been doing the triathlon for over fifteen years, a sport which requires a great deal of stamina and willpower, since it consists of three Olympic events: swimming about 1,500 metres, running ten kilometres and cycling for forty kilometres.
One day, while training on his bicycle for a competition to be held in the north of the country, he was unable to finish the exercise because he unexpectedly began to feel strong back pain.
At first he thought it was just a minor muscular problem, but the following Sunday, as he was receiving the Holy Eucharist at Mass, the pain appeared again, this time aggravated by difficulty in breathing. With great effort he walked to his car and, feeling unable to drive, asked his eldest son for help. The latter called for medical assistance, which soon brought him to Our Lady of the Pillar Hospital, where he was treated in the emergency room by a doctor friend; given the intensity of the pain, this doctor and some other specialists suspected that it was a vesicular disorder.
From the first day in hospital, he was administered high doses of morphine. An MRI scan revealed pneumonia with fluid in the right lung, which called for a drainage procedure to be carried out.
The outlook worsens
Fernando was soon transferred to the ICU. It then became very difficult for him to sleep, as, due to the intense pain and respiratory impairment, he could only bear to remain seated. At this stage all decisions regarding his health depended on the family, as on several occasions he lost consciousness.
At dawn on the day after his admission to the ICU, a nurse preparing medication accidentally moved the chest drain, which touched some nerves, causing him terrible pain for two hours. This led the pneumologist to remove the tube, as, in addition to causing discomfort, it had become useless for draining the lung, seeing that the material to be removed had acquired a gelatinous consistency.
Accompanied from the beginning by his sister, – Mrs. Olgui de Ruiz, a Co-operator of the Heralds of the Gospel – Fernando asked her to call a priest and a certain Sister of that association, with whom he had been in contact. The priest immediately attended him and administered the Sacraments of Confession and the Anointing of the Sick, but the Sister was unable to heed his request because she was travelling.
As the days passed, the situation worsened because of the increase of secretion in his lungs, which required a surgical intervention to clean them. However, this could not be done because of Fernando’s precarious state and the persistence of the bacteria causing the illness.
“I spent the night speaking with the lady in the photograph”
This is how Fernando relates the outcome of the case: “In agreement with my family, on the morning of January 20 the doctors decided to operate on me and scheduled the surgical intervention for the following day. On the evening of the 20th, the Sister I wished to speak with arrived in Guatemala, and she went straight from the airport to the hospital to visit me. Besides praying and imploring God for my recovery, she gave me some photographs of Our Lady of Fatima and Dona Lucilia, recommending that I pray to them and make a promise to Dona Lucilia to restore my health. I spent that night speaking with the lady in the photograph and promised her that if she helped me to recover from this I would visit her tomb in Brazil.”
His request was soon granted: although it was a long operation, it took place without complications and his health began to improve. After two days he was released from intensive care and, only five days after the operation, the doctors discharged him.
Having remained at his sister’s house during his convalescence, Fernando made a habit of accompanying her every day to Holy Mass celebrated in the House of the Heralds of the Gospel, despite the fact that the commute was still painful for him. In this way, he came to learn more about the institution, as well as the life of Dr. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira and his mother, Dona Lucilia.
Divine solutions, that science cannot explain…
“Because of the damage to my lung, the medical prognosis was that I would only walk normally again in eight months,” Fernando states. However, to further attest to Dona Lucilia’s help, eight days after leaving the hospital he was already walking well, without oxygen or the help of a walker.
“When the time came for my first appointment after I left the hospital, the doctors asked me: ‘What did you do to get yourself walking in such a short time?’ I answered: ‘It was a miracle of Dona Lucilia…’ They did not understand, but I did.”
His recovery proceeded so rapidly that on February 6, Fernando attended the First Saturday ceremony at the House of the Heralds of the Gospel; on March 22 he made a pilgrimage to the Christ of Esquipulas Shrine, located two hundred and twenty kilometres from the city, accompanied by a friend. On April 24, barely three months after the operation, he resumed his sporting activities, covering eighty kilometres on a racing bicycle; this improvement surprised not only the doctors, but all those who knew about his illness and the sequelae it normally entails. Finally, on April 26, he consecrated himself to Our Lady according to the method of St. Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort.
With the permission of the pneumologist, on June 21, less than six months after his operation, Fernando embarked for Brazil to fulfil the promise made to his heavenly protectress. Arriving in the city of São Paulo, he made his way without delay to Consolação Cemetery, where the mortal remains of Dona Lucilia rest.
And he concludes his account: “This was the first of my visits and, nevertheless, I am still filled with indescribable feelings when I recall my emotion and joy in fulfilling the promise to her who, from Heaven, had helped me to recover the health of my body and, above all, of my soul.”
* * *
Once again, such facts clearly demonstrate Dona Lucilia’s surprising intercession, sometimes immediate, sometimes requiring persistence in prayer, but always thorough and maternal. For each case, she has a different solution, restoring to souls the serenity which the small and big problems of daily life had robbed from them.
However, there is one common element in all these interventions: the desire to engrave in hearts the certainty of the help that she will invariably obtain from the Sacred Heart of Jesus for those who present their afflictions and difficulties to her with confidence. ◊
In the featured photo: Luciana da Silva beside a portrait
of her benefactress