Wednesday, 01 March 2017 21:00

My Dominant Defect is Sadness

valeria con amigas colegio 800 390

 Our Lord and Our Mother made me see that I was not studying for God’s glory and honor. They are both so good!

On August 21, 2015, Valeria gathered up the courage to write Father Rafael, Founder of the Home of the Mother, for the first time. She opens her heart to him and tells him about her difficulties in her studies and the graces she received on her fifteenth birthday. Moreover, with a surprising maturity, she describes how she discovered her dominant defect, sadness, and the battle she experiences as she conquers the temptation that moves her toward discouragement. Who would have imagined that the smile that always lit up her face was the fruit of a constant and persevering struggle against sadness? Surely it is for this reason that those who knew her say that Valeria’s smile gave so much peace: it was the result of her victory against the Evil One.

Below is part of that letter. Valeria had just turned fifteen years old. It was two months before her entrance as aspirant of the Servant Sisters of the Home of the Mother, October 17, 2015, and eight months before her death on April 16, 2016.

Dear Father,

Hi Father! How are you? I hope you are doing very well. This is Valeria, from the Home of the Mother at Playa Prieta.

Well, I am writing because I want to tell you about so many things, now that I finally gathered the courage to write to you. One of the things that I want to tell you is that my fifteenth birthday was May 14. It was a day filled with graces and joy in my heart. Before that day, I was not doing well at all. Sometimes I really disappoint myself. During Spiritual Exercises and when you were in Ecuador [Valeria refers to the days in which Fr. Rafael and M. Ana, Superior General of the Servant Sisters of the Home of the Mother, had been in Ecuador a short time before], I was doing very well. After that, my torment began, or rather God’s torment.

You and the Sisters always tell me that I have to be a good student, because I am not excellent. And since we had just started classes, I fell into despair. I am not going to say that I did not study, because I did study, and quite a lot! I began to worry more about my studies than God. Luckily, I did not leave off anything, neither prayer nor Mass... But I continued to despair a great deal. They were very difficult moments of temptation to leave everything and dedicate myself to studies alone. Thanks be to God, I have very good people around me who always helped me, and while I did not want to show what was happening to me, some of them noticed. Weeks went by, and the more I studied, the worse my grades were... Our Lord and Our Mother made me see that I was not studying for God’s glory and honor. They are both so good!

Hermana Megan y Valeria con su hábito rosa por sus 15 años

Ok, continuing with my birthday. The whole day was a grace after grace. After school, I invited the girls for lunch at my house. Mass was at 6:00pm, and afterwards they had a surprise prepared for me! In brief, my dress was a pink Servant Sisters’ habit. I cannot deny that when I saw it tears came to my eyes upon seeing how good the Servant Sisters of the Home of the Mother are. The girls and candidates put in on me. Then a special celebration was waiting for me in the assembly hall... I do not know how to thank the Lord for what He does for me.

That happiness did not last long, because I went back to being sad and tired... Now you understand that it was because I am disappointed in myself. I tried to act like I was fine, but I could not. And if I could, it lasted maybe two or three days. About three weeks ago, we had a retreat with the girls in Playa Prieta. That retreat also did a lot of good to my soul. I needed it. My batteries were recharged. Once again, the Devil tried to get in the way, but he was not able to like he planned... I spoke with my spiritual guide and she helped me discover many things, one of them being my dominant defect, which is sadness. She told me several things, including that when the Devil tried to bother me again, to remember everything that He [Our Lord] had given me and done for me, how He has helped me and how He continues to help me. That defect no longer conquers me like it used to. When a sad thought comes to me, I cut it off.

[...]

Thank so very much for everything. Say hello to the Sisters and to Mother. Tomorrow I am going to Puyo for the first time.
Pray for my family and me.

Oh! And forgive my spelling mistakes and poor expression.

Valeria

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If you have any favors, memories or stories about Sr. Clare or any of the 5 postulants who died in Ecuador, please send us an email: sisterclare@homeofthemother.org

In addition to your stories, please indicate where you are from, which of the six Sisters you are speaking about and how you met her. We are also thankful for videos and pictures.